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Brown v. Board of Education: Virginia Responds
An Exhibition at the Library of Virginia
Originally Displayed December 2003—June 2004.
Brown v. Board of Education Documents: Virginians Respond — Richmond

Return to Letter from Robert Leon Bacon

[The editors have not corrected the correspondents' spelling and grammar.]

[notation from Governor's Office: "acknowledge"]

516 West Marshall St
Richmond 20, Virginia
December 2, 1955

Governor Stanely
Governor's Mansion
Richmond Virginia

Honorable Thomas B. Stanely;

In viewing the recent doctrine of this great segregation debate. I know that the South can no longer rule with police rule. And intergration is coming whether or not the citizens wont it or not. But I was sorry when I tried to enlist into the Virginia National Guard the sergeant told me that no colored people can join it.

I would like to go to places such as the Hot Shoppe, Clover Room, Wakefield Grill, Ewarts Cafeteria and Coles. I cannot eat in these places because I'm colored. I cannot go to the Raleigh Hotel, King Carter Hotel but instead I have to go to Slaughter's Hotel. I cannot go to the Loew's, Grand or Westhampton theatres.

When I get on a V.T.C. bus in Richmond I have to go in the rear. If I sit up in the front I might get arrested and fine[d] by a local judge.

I can hardly look at a white girl for fear that she'll scream "rape" and she'll have some corny story to tell in court about me. Virginia is no place for a colored citizen like me to live in. I am denied many rights and privileges by law that I should have. Virginia is the home of presidents but it is not the home of democracy. It is the home of white supremacy. The colored people (most of them) can hardly live decently in the South.

I cannot go on Monument Ave. and visit a white girl from fear of being "lynched" or beaten up or arrested or electrocuted. But let some white guy come around on Second Street and nothing is done about it. But this happy regime isn't going to last forever I'm going to chase them back where they live at.

The South have been dead since the Civil War. It's never been like the great North. The South certainly did lose the Civil War. Now is the time for us colored people to rise up and demand our rights and first class privileges as citizens should always have.

I don't think that the Southern States beliefs and ideas on segregation are righteously. But if the South did not have their large police forces, all-white National Guards, and the state's arsenals are ran by the whites. If it would for these things segregation would never have existed in this devasting South.
I'm leaving this rabish and unjustice South very soon. And I'm telling my many friends up North about my experiences in Virginia.

Intergration is coming soon. I know very soon to ease our aching heart for white friends.

Sincerely yours,
Robert Leon Bacon

P.S. If I get lynched in Virginia, I'll not the only person to die. I've leave a curse for many at her white Southerners.

RG 3, Executive Office, Thomas B. Stanley Papers