National Death Penalty Archive
The National Death Penalty Archive (NDPA) is a partnership between the University at Albany Libraries and the Capital Punishment Research Initiative (CPRI) at the University's School of Criminal Justice. In 1999, researchers at the School of Criminal Justice formally established the CPRI. Its overarching goals were research and education -- initiate capital punishment research activities, facilitate collaboration among researchers, and make findings and information available to legal and criminal justice policymakers, practitioners, and the public. One of the original goals of the CPRI was to establish and maintain a collection of archival materials documenting the important history of capital punishment, and to provide resources for historical scholarship. This growing collection of archival materials is housed in the M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives, which is located in the University's state of the art Science Library. Open since 1999, the new archival repository includes climate-controlled storage for more than 25,000 cubic feet. The following collections have been acquired for the NDPA through the collaborative efforts of the CPRI and the University Libraries; work is continuing to build this important link to the history of capital punishment in the United States.
For reference queries contact Grenander Department Reference staff or (518) 437–3931
Additional related collections are available at the Department's subject page for Criminal Justice and Prisons.
Collection, 1990–2006, 3.5 cubic ft. (APAP–204)
The Bill Babbitt Collection primarily consists of material related to the execution of Bill's brother, Manny Babbitt, in California on May 4, 1999. The collection includes material collected by Bill Babbitt as part of his activism with Murder Victims' Families For Human Rights and the contents of Manny Babbitt's cell at the time of his execution.
BEDAU, HUGO ADAM
Papers, 1961–2000, 36 cubic ft. (APAP–199)
Bedau (Ph.D., Harvard, 1961), is a current commentator and active opponent of the death penalty. Bedau was a Professor of Philosophy at Tufts University from 1966-1999 and author of Current Issues and Enduring Questions (4th edition, 1996); Critical Thinking, Reading, and Writing (2nd edition, 1996); In Spite of Innocence (1992); editor, Civil Disobedience in Focus (1991); Death is Different (1987); The Death Penalty in America (4th ed., 1997); and contributor to many other volumes. His Romanell - Phi Beta Kappa lectures delivered at Tufts in the spring of 1995, were published by Oxford University Press under the title, Making Moral Choices. Bedau was recently the chairman of the board for the National Coalition Against the Death Penalty and a member of the board for the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts.
Papers, 1980–2010, 221 cubic ft. (APAP–329)
David Baldus (1935-2011) was the Joseph B. Tye Professor at the University of Iowa College of Law whose research and scholarship on the influence of race in the administration of the death penalty remains unparalleled. His study of racial disparities in the application of Georgia's death penalty served as the foundation of the landmark Supreme Court case, McCleskey v. Kemp (1987). In that decision, by vote of 5-4, the justices upheld Georgia's death penalty law against constitutional challenge despite dramatic race-of-victim differences in capital charging and sentencing decisions that were revealed by "the Baldus study." In addition to materials about McCleskey and capital punishment in Georgia, the collection includes studies of the death penalty and sentencing from other states, including Pennsylvania and Nebraska, and the military. The papers contain correspondence, research and data, scholarly articles, reports, court documents, teaching and lecture materials, testimony and speeches, notes, calendars, videos, and newspaper clippings.
Papers, 1980–1996, 23 cubic ft. (APAP–312)
Leigh B. Bienen is a senior lecturer at Northwestern University School of Law and a criminal defense attorney whose areas of expertise include capital punishment, sex crimes, and rape reform legislation. Previously, Bienen taught law at Princeton University, the University of Pennsylvania, and the University of California (Berkeley). She is a published author who is licensed to practice law in Illinois, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, New York, and Washington, D.C. and is a member of the Bar of the United States Supreme Court. Currently, Bienen is the director of the Chicago Historical Homicide Project, analyzing a hand written data set kept by the Chicago Police of more than 11,000 homicides in Chicago from 1870-1930. Earlier Bienen directed an empirical study of all homicide cases in New Jersey after the reimposition of capital punishment in that state and drafted the model sex offense statute which was the basis for rape reform legislation in a number of states and enacted in New Jersey in 1979. The collection includes files relating to the New Jersey homicide study, correspondence, case files, court documents and legal briefs, death penalty legislation, newspaper and magazine clippings, background resources, and scholarly articles.
Papers, 1995–2009, 97 cubic ft. (APAP–186)
For nearly two decades, Abe Bonowitz has worked to educate the public about human rights problems, in particular the death penalty and the need for alternatives to the death penalty. During this time he served in numerous director, consultant, managerial, and activist roles with leading advocacy and death penalty abolitionist organizations. Bonowitz currently works as director of affiliate support for the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty. Previously, he co-founded and directed Citizens United for Alternatives to the Death Penalty from 1997 to 2008, directed Floridians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty from 1999 until 2007, and served first as a consultant and then as a field manager with New Jerseyans for Alternatives to the Death Penalty from 2005 until 2008. In 2004 he was elected to the board of directors of the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty until resigning to take a staff position with the organization in 2008. The collection includes administrative files, correspondence, petitions, brochures, direct mailings, information packets, and newsletters related to Citizens United for Alternatives to the Death Penalty, Floridians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty, and New Jerseyans for Alternatives to the Death Penalty as well as other advocacy groups. In addition, there is extensive memorabilia from abolitionist organizations, news clippings, scholarly articles, government reports, photographs and negatives, and video materials, including DVDs and VHS tapes.
CAPITAL DEFENDER OFFICE
Records, 1995–2008, 98 cubic ft. (APAP–309)
The Capital Defender Office (1995-2008) (CDO) was established as part of New York State’s 1995 death penalty legislation which took effect on September 1, 1995. Under the new law, the State expanded the crime of first degree murder and introduced two new penalties, death and life in prison without possibility of parole, for those convicted. Working from offices in Albany, New York City, and Rochester, the CDO sought to ensure that defendants being tried by the State, who could not afford representation, receive skilled counsel in capital cases. The CDO closed its Rochester office in 2005, and, as no state death penalty cases remain, the Albany and New York City offices in 2008. This collection consists of news clips (filed by subject), subject files, bound records of appeal in the cases of the People v. Cahill, Harris, LaValle, Mateo, McCoy, and Taylor, notebooks with appellate briefs, New York county court papers arranged by county, government studies, reports and debates on capital punishment, annual reports, and a small number of VHS tapes recording court proceedings. There are defendant case files, some with correspondence, court papers, and news clips and others with just news clips. In addition, there is a box with three sealed sets of materials under embargo until 2018, 2023, and 2028 respectively.
CAPITAL JURY PROJECT
Records, 1990–2002, 69 cubic ft. (APAP–196)
The Capital Jury Project was initiated in 1991 by a consortium of university-based researchers with support from the National Science Foundation. The Project is administered nationally by Dr. William Bowers, Principal Research Scientist, Northeastern University. The findings of the CJP are based on 3 to 4 hour, in-depth, interviews with persons who have served as jurors in capital trials. Phase I of the Project has completed over 1,200 interviews from jurors in 353 capital trials in 14 states. These interviews chronicled the jurors' experiences and decision-making over the course of the trial, identify points at which various influences come into play, and reveal the ways in which jurors reach their final sentencing decision. This project is being continued by the Capital Jury Project II (CJP2), a program of research on the decision-making of capital jurors.
CAPITAL PUNISHMENT CLEMENCY PETITIONS
Collection, 2004-2005, 6 cubic ft. (APAP–214)
The collection includes approximately 150 clemency petitions filed by inmates from across the United States. The clemency process varies from state to state and typically involves the governor, a board of advisors, or both. Clemency refers to the lessening of the penalty of the crime without forgiving the crime itself. The act of clemency is a reprieve.
CATHOLICS AGAINST CAPITAL PUNISHMENT
Records, 1978–2010, 1.0 cubic ft. (APAP–321)
Established in 1992, Catholics Against Capital Punishment seeks to promote greater awareness of Catholic Church teachings about capital punishment as unnecessary and inappropriate. As an advocate against the use of the death penalty, the organization shares news of Catholic anti-death penalty efforts, urges lawmakers to repeal existing capital punishment laws and to resist creating new ones, and encourages Catholic clergy and religious groups to speak out against capital punishment. The records document the organization's mission and include: statements by Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI, Vatican officials, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and its predecessor organizations, and individual bishops and U.S. State Catholic Conferences regarding the death penalty; testimony and letters submitted to the U.S. Congress advocating against the death penalty; and background research materials.
CORRECTIONAL ASSOCIATION OF NEW YORK STATE
Records, 1844–1988, 31.33 cubic ft. (APAP–014)
Includes microfilm of the printed annual reports, 1844–1979; scrapbook, ca. 1915; Board of Directors' files, 1962–1988; subject files, 1962–1980; and prison visit reports, 1974–1980; Narcotics Committee files, 1949, 1962–1972, 1975; Program and Bureau Files, 1967–1983. The Correctional Association of New York was founded in 1844 by John W. Edmonds, President of the Board of Inspectors at Sing Sing Prison. Originally named the Prison Association of New York, the organization was formed to ameliorate the conditions of criminal defendants and prisoners, improve the discipline and administration of local jails and state prisons, and furnish assistance and encouragement to reformed convicts after discharge. It is the only private organization in the state that has the power to conduct on–site examinations of state and local correctional facilities and report its findings and recommendations to governmental authorities. Since 1846, it has been charged with submitting an annual report on prison conditions in New York State to the New York State Assembly.
NEW YORK ASSEMBLY DEATH PENALTY HEARINGS
Collection, 2004-2005, 1.6 cubic ft. (APAP–206)
The Death Penalty in New York Testimony Collection includes testimony given to the New York State Assembly Standing Committee on Codes, Assembly Standing Committee on Judiciary, and Assembly Standing Committee on Correction, on December 14, 2004, January 21 and 25, 2005, and February 8 and 11, 2005. Eugene G. Wanger, Michigan Committee Against Capital Punishment, compiled the guide to the collection, which includes testimony from 137 witnesses, including officials from grass roots organizations, practicing lawyers, law professors, concerned citizens, religious leaders, former inmates, and families of victims. The collection also includes the Public Hearing reports for each day of hearings, recorded verbatim; a copy of the 1965 Committee for the Revision of the Penal and Criminal Legal Code Special Report on Capital Punishment; and an amicus brief ("friend of the court"), People v. McCoy, filed by Stewart F. Hancock.
THE ENGAGED ZEN FOUNDATION
Records, 1990-2004, 10 cubic ft. (APAP–208)
The Engaged Zen Foundation is an independent organization originally founded to foster zazen (seated contemplative meditation) practice in prisons. The experience of working in prisons throughout the United States over a dozen years has compelled the Engaged Zen Foundation's efforts to focus on the "complete circle of human rights imperatives." The Foundation is "committed to the abolition of punitive incarceration in any form, the dismantling of the prison industrial complex, and the adoption of alternative, restorative, methods of dealing with what is colloquially known as "criminal justice."" The collection includes the case file and correspondence of Frankie Parker and Daniel Patrick Hauser, material related to Rev. Kobutsu Malone's work at Sing Sing Prison, death penalty books and reports, origami created by Frankie Parker and an empty vial of the second drug used in the execution process.
ESPY, M. WATT
Papers, 90 cubic ft. (APAP–301)
M. Watt Espy, Jr. is widely recognized as one of the foremost historians of the legally executed in the United States. Beginning with his own personal resources, in May 1970, Espy begun his quest to list and document approximately 20,000 government sanctioned executions in the United States since 1608. His method is to collect information by obtaining state Department of Corrections records, newspapers, published and unpublished county histories, proceedings of state and local courts, holdings of historical societies, magazines, and holdings of historical societies, museums, and archives. The Watt Espy Papers were donated to the University at Albany Libraries’ M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives in January 2008. The Espy Papers contain the records collected by Espy in his work to detail every execution in the United States
Collection, 1965–1995, 5.4 cubic ft. (APAP–159)
Alvin Ford was convicted of first-degree murder in Broward County, Florida on December 17, 1974, and sentenced to death on January 6, 1975. He appealed his murder conviction and death sentence to the Supreme Court of Florida, which upheld both in Ford v State (1979). After spending years on death row during which Ford became incompetent, his case eventually was heard by the United States Supreme Court. In Ford v. Wainwright (1986), the Court concluded that the 8th Amendment prohibits the State from inflicting the death penalty on a prisoner who is insane. This collection includes the legal case file created by Ford's legal team during the period 1974-1990.
Papers, 1985–2006, 11.4 cubic ft. (APAP–291)
The records were created during Gross' work with the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty (NCADP), Journey of Hope, Lighting the Torch of Conscience, and other activities in opposition to the death penalty. The NCADP leads and coordinates the movement to end state killing in the United States. Its 120 member organizations include civil and human rights groups, legal advocacy and public interest groups, and virtually every major church or religious denomination in the country. Journey of Hope...from Violence to Healing is an organization that is led by murder victims' family members. It conducts public education speaking tours and addresses alternatives to the death penalty. The collection includes: NCADP state files, programs, and organizations; Journey of Hope...From Violence to Healing administrative files, videotapes, photographs, and press packets related to speaking tours; and material from the Lighting the Torch of Conscience march in 1990.
Papers, 1982–2000, 11.1 cubic ft. (APAP–108)
Since 1972, Rick Halperin has been actively involved in the effort to abolish the death penalty in the United States. He works with many anti-death penalty organizations, capital defense attorneys, representatives of various communities of faith, newspaper editorial boards, victims' rights groups, members of the families of the condemned, and many death row inmates throughout the country. The collection consists of news clippings, newsletters, campaign materials, letters of plea, flyers and notices of rallies, research materials, organizational reports, and publications about the death penalty and death penalty issues.
Papers, 1991–2003, 3.2 cubic ft. (APAP–188)
Steven Hawkins and his staff created these papers during his tenure as Executive Director of the National Coalition Against the Death Penalty, now called the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty. The papers contain meeting subject files that include extensive minutes of board meetings, speeches, travel arrangements, fundraising and reception notes, and pamphlets and other papers relating to his attendance at various board and committee meetings with related organizations, such as the Death Penalty Information Center and Amnesty International. The papers also contain copies of police reports, witness and investigator statements, and defendant testimony regarding the cases of certain high-profile death row inmates, such as Mumia Abu-Jamal, Delma Banks Jr., Kenneth Reams and Keith Versie, which were retained by Steven Hawkins and his staff in order to provide legal advocacy in court hearings to obtain commutation, clemency, or exoneration for these inmates.
HENRY SCHWARSCHILD MEMORIAL COLLECTION
Collection, 1836–2013, 6 cubic ft. (APAP–337)
Lansing, Michigan attorney and death penalty opponent Eugene G. Wanger donated this collection in memory of Henry Schwarzschild (1925-1996), a civil rights advocate, longtime director of the American Civil Liberties Union's Capital Punishment Project, and head of the New York office of the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty at the time of his death. The collection contains more than 180 books, papers and other written materials about the death penalty. In addition, there are a number of topical articles written by Wanger, copies of his legislative testimony, illustrations, materials from death penalty abolitionist organizations, and photographs of Schwarzschild. Wanger, a delegate to Michigan’s Constitutional Convention of 1961, authored the section of the state constitution which bans capital punishment.
ILLINOIS COALITION TO ABOLISH THE DEATH PENALTY(APAP-324)
Papers, 1963–2011, 0.6 cubic ft. (APAP–324)
The Illinois Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty (ICADP) donated its records in 2011 following repeal of the death penalty in the state. The archivist retained the original order of the files and the collection includes annual reports, newsletters, clippings and press releases. ICADP gained national attention with its campaign to rid Illinois of capital punishment; this is evident with materials documenting the case of John Wayne Gacy, executed in 1994, and the murder of nine year old Jeanine Nicarico in 1983. The collection also contains the 2002 documentary film Too Flawed to Fix: The Illinois Death Penalty Experience which explores the legal flaws in the capital punishment system in Illinois and materials pertaining to Amnesty International. There are clippings of Northwestern University School of Law’s National Conference on Wrongful Convictions and the Death Penalty during which former Death Row inmates later found innocent of their crimes participated on a panel. In addition, the collection features clippings about the 2000 moratorium on the death penalty by Governor George H. Ryan and the 2011 signing of the bill SB 3539, Abolition of the Death Penalty, by Governor Pat Quinn.
JOURNEY OF HOPE/BILL PELKE COLLECTION
Records, 1993–2005, 29.25 cubic ft. (APAP–205)
Journey of Hope...from Violence to Healing is an organization that is led by murder victims' family members. It conducts public education speaking tours and addresses alternatives to the death penalty. This collection contains organizing material for Journey of Hope…from Violence to Healing, Murder Victims' Families for Reconciliation (MVFR) and Murder Victims’ Families for Human Rights (MVFHR). There are also materials from the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty (NCADP), Amnesty International and materials related to Juveniles and the death penalty. "Journey of Hope...From Violence to Healing" is an organization that is led by murder victims' family members. It conducts public education speaking tours and addresses alternatives to the death penalty. The collection includes public materials from the Journey of Hope cofounder, Bill Pelke; descriptions of events; t-shirts; and videos of marches. It also includes personal letters with death row inmates (e.g., Michael Ross, Karla Faye Tucker and others), Paula Cooper files, files on forgiveness and miscellaneous additional materials including newspaper articles, newsletters, and pictures from abolition events in the United States and foreign countries.
MARYLAND CITIZENS AGAINST STATE EXECUTIONS (APAP-340)
Records, 1962–2013, 4.9 cubic ft. (APAP–340)
Maryland Citizens Against State Executions (Maryland CASE) is a coalition of over 25 groups and 1,300 individuals that united to help successfully end the death penalty in Maryland in 2013 through education, grassroots action, and public demonstration. Founded in 1997 and formally incorporated in 2000 as the Maryland Coalition Against State Executions, the group changed its name in 2003. Today MD Case remains active and is overseen by an involved board of death penalty activists. The collection documents MD CASE’s ongoing efforts to repeal capital punishment in Maryland. It consists of correspondence, meeting minutes, legislation, lobbying materials, subject files, special event and conference materials, case files and clippings.
MELLO, MICHAEL A.
Papers, 54 cubic ft. (APAP–287)
Michael A. Mello is an internationally recognized authority on the death penalty and capital punishment issues. Examples of cases that he has been involved in or in which he has served as an informal advisor include those of Theodore Kaczynski, Joseph Robert “Crazy Joe” Spaziano, Theodore Bundy, and Paul Hill. Professor Mello's courses taught at Vermont Law School have included Constitutional Law, Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure, Ethics, a Capital Punishment seminar, and a Search and Seizure seminar. The collection includes material related to Professor Mello's publications; research files; files related to individual capital punishment cases including Spaziano and Kaczynski; publications including Death Work, Dead Wrong, Re: Capital Punishment; and related material.
MURDER VICTIMS' FAMILIES FOR RECONCILIATION
Records, 1994–2005, 23 cubic ft. (APAP–313)
Established in 1976, Murder Victims’ Families for Reconciliation is a national organization which supports coordinated efforts to abolish the death penalty in all cases. The organization includes family members of both homicide victims and those executed as well as their respective supporters. The collection consists of annual reports, correspondence, organization newsletters and direct mail marketing materials, subject files, administrative files, including telephone logs, special event materials, including conferences and benefit concerts, photographs, background resource materials, and audio and video.
NATIONAL COALITION TO ABOLISH THE DEATH PENALTY
Records, 1975–2002, 68 cubic ft. (APAP–110)
The records include information that documents NCADP’s mission and activities such as conference materials, publications, and death row and clemency case files. NCADP was founded in 1976 in response to the Gregg v. Georgia Supreme Court decision, which reinstated the use of the death penalty in the United States.
NEW YORK STATE DEFENDERS ASSOCIATION (NYSDA)
Records, 1975–1998, 12 cubic ft. (APAP–110)
The New York State Defenders Association (NYSDA) is a not-for-profit, membership organization, which has provided support to New York's criminal defense bar since 1967. The NYSDA collection is composed of news articles about capital punishment and related issues.
NEW YORKERS FOR ALTERNATIVES TO THE DEATH PENALTY
Records, 1984–2011, 14.0 cubic ft. (APAP–326)
New Yorkers for Alternatives to the Death Penalty (NYADP), founded in 1992 as New Yorkers Against the Death Penalty, is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that in 2008 expanded its mission after achieving its primary objective of the effective abolition of capital punishment in New York. Led by executive director David Kaczynski, NYADP supports effective, rational, and humane approaches to the problem of violent crime in a post-death penalty environment. This collection documents both the organization’s current and earlier mission. The records include correspondence, interviews, news clippings, newsletters, awards, materials related to conferences, speaking opportunities and meetings, photographs, scholarly articles, audio/video, buttons, and materials from national death penalty abolitionist groups.
Papers, 1989–2004, 1 cubic ft. (APAP–336)
Michael Radelet is a professor of Sociology at the University of Colorado at Boulder and a long-time scholar of capital punishment, criminology, deviance and the sociology of law, and medical sociology. The Michael Radelet Papers contain research materials on capital punishment cases analyzed for inclusion in articles or book chapters, including Executions of Whites for Crimes Against Blacks (1989), Executive Clemency in Post-Furman Cases (1993), and “On Botched Executions” (with co-author Marian J. Borg) which appeared in Capital Punishment, Strategies for Abolition. The collection also features copies of the scholarly works and correspondence related to their publication.
Collection, 1995–2007, 8 cubic ft. (APAP–332)
This collection contains subject files on law and capital punishment created by University of California, Berkeley School of Law professor Elisabeth Semel. Previously a public defender and a trial attorney in private practice, Semel joined the Berkeley School of Law in 2001 as the first director of its Death Penalty Clinic. Semel represents clients facing capital punishment at all stages of the proceedings in California and several states in the South. The majority of the papers are newspaper and journal article reprints, including opinion pieces. Files are arranged by state and/or key topic, such as federal death penalty, innocence, juveniles or crime statistics.
SOUTHERN COALITION ON JAILS AND PRISONS
Records, 12 cubic ft. (APAP–200)
Organized in 1974, the Southern Coalition on Jails and Prisons was formed to promote greater awareness of the problems of prisons and corrections, improve communication between the prison population and the outside world, and advocate for alternatives to the death penalty. The Coalition was active in North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee, Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana, Virginia, and Kentucky through the early 1990s. The records are primarily the files of Joe Ingle, co-founder of the Coalition.
Papers, 1982–2009, 23 cubic ft. (APAP–330)
Victor Streib, author, expert witness and retired professor of law, is an authority on the death penalty, especially its application to women and juveniles. He served as appellate counsel in several death penalty cases involving juveniles, including Thompson v. Oklahoma, the 1988 case that established a Constitutional minimum age of 16 for the death penalty. This collection contains Streib’s case files and research on both women and juveniles sentenced to death and women and juveniles executed. The files feature historic and contemporary cases. In addition, the papers consist of court documents, news clippings, scholarship by other death penalty authorities and articles, books and presentations written by Streib.
Maria Telesco donated the book Words from the Row by Steven King Ainsworth and edited by Margo Schulter and audiotapes of sessions from the National Conference on Wrongful Convictions and the Death Penalty held November 13-15, 1998, at the Northwestern University Legal Clinic. This material is part of the Department of Special Collections and Archives book collection.
VAN DEN HAAG, ERNEST
Papers, 1935–2000, 11.45 cubic ft. (APAP–135)
Ernest van den Haag (1914-2002) was a conservative commentator of social issues, especially crime, and one of America's foremost proponents of the death penalty. The publications in this collection include articles in published form, drafts, and related correspondence. Types of publications include transcripts from appearances on television shows in the 1970s and 1980s, files on the books which he authored, rough drafts for chapters, and hundreds of articles written for various journals, magazines, and newspapers from 1950-2000. The collection's publications cover a wide array of social science issues of the mid to late 20th century from an intellectual conservative's view. Topics include American culture, criminal justice, education, conservatism versus liberalism, and American politics. Van den Haag had a special political interest in U.S. foreign policy and commented on the Vietnam War, foreign wars, and the issues of the Cold War.
VIRGINIANS' FOR ALTERNATIVES TO THE DEATH PENALTY
Records, 1985–2007, 16 cubic ft. (APAP–304)
Established in 1991, Virginians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty is a statewide citizens' organization dedicated to educating the public about alternatives to the death penalty. Originally founded as Virginians Against State Killing, and later known as Virginians for Alternatives to State Killing, the organization chose its current name in 1994. One of the organization’s key initiatives is tracking the voting record for death penalty related legislation for individual legislators in the Virginia General Assembly. The collection includes petitions seeking a moratorium on the death penalty in Virginia, Virginia General Assembly legislation, case law and legal education materials, subject files, news clips, scholarly articles, VHS tapes, and materials and memorabilia related to organizational special events.
VON DREHLE, DAVID
Papers, 1975–1990, 7 cubic ft. (APAP–213)
Collected during Von Drehle's writing of Among the Lowest of the Dead, a history of Florida's experience with the death penalty between the Furman decision and 1989. For 11 years, Von Drehle covered Florida's death row for the Miami Herald and the collection consists of a comprehensive record of that period and Florida's experience with the death penalty. The collection includes virtually every relevant newspaper clipping from a Florida newspaper in that period, plus notes from 100-plus interviews, government reports, law review articles, and some ephemera, copies of inmate letters and diaries, transcripts of testimony in major appeals and clemency hearings.