Ray, James Earl (1928-1998)
The James Earl Ray collection consists of letters written from prison to Ray’s family members (mostly his brother, Jerry) and a few others, including lawyers and publishers. The collection includes approximately 400 letters; 1-2 pages each (prison regulations forbade a longer letter), dating from 1969 to 1997. They detail Ray’s battles with wardens, jailors, and legal authorities. Legal strategies for re-opening his case are chronicled. Dealings with publishers and press are mentioned. Ray’s attempts to help with the personal and criminal problems of family members form an especially insightful part of these papers.