Spring Letter from Eddie Conway


I hope this update finds everyone in good health and high spirits. April of 2010 will mark the fortieth (40) year that I have been held unjustly. I would say illegally but the fact is that, those in power change the definition of what is legal whenever it suits them. However, regardless of what definition they ascribe to my imprisonment, the fact remains, I am here because of what I believe not for anything that I have done. I have delayed writing this update for a couple of months while waiting to release my book The Greatest Threat…More on the book later…
First, a look back to the last update and the progress made since then. In 2009, we started a mentoring project known as Friend of a Friend at the institution where I’m now housed. The last seven months of 2009 were spent training 20 prisoners to be mentors. Eighteen of these men graduated with the help of the American Friend Service Committee’s Peace with Justice Program in Baltimore. We are currently training twenty-five new mentees. Our goal: through our shared skills, experience and knowledge we will produce prisoners that are critical thinkers and able leaders. This will go a long way in changing the direction of the prison system and the communities from which these young men come.

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Update from Political Prisoner Marshall Eddie Conway

EddieI hope this letter finds you in good health and high spirits. Thanks to all who wrote back after the last update, it was good to hear from you all. I will continue to try to respond to your mail whenever I can, but I must admit after nearly 40 years of captivity, most of my energy is directed toward maintaining my health and keeping my spirit strong. Hopefully, these updates will allow some communication between us. I always inform anyone who asks how I have survived this ordeal, that my ability to survive has always been strengthened by my family, friends, and supporters. Please know that I appreciate all efforts and contributions of support on my behalf, both large and small.

Some much needed work was done over the past few months. My California support committees in LA and Oakland hosted several events focused on my case. A new book of interviews, by myself and other political prisoners, is due to be published by AK Press this year. I am also in the process of publishing my memoir. The book will also be released through AK Press; we are currently finalizing the contract and completing the manuscript.

Here at the prison, we organized a series of programs for black history month. They were the first black history programs undertaken in this prison yet here it is 2009 and this prison is full of black men! In March, we sponsored a program on women for international women’s month. All the programs were open to the population and presented with the help of community activists and prisoners. I am also involved in another mentoring program; we have seen this project expand throughput the system, and iti is reaching incarcerated youth as young as seventeen in some adult facilities.

I am happy to report that my family is doing okay and continues to grow. I am looking forward to seeing some of my grandchildren this summer. And I continue to miss my other grandchildren. I will always advocate for strong family unity and more networking between all of us. While my health in general is good, I have been struggling with high blood pressure. I am using diet, exercise and medicine to control it. Of course, losing a few pounds would help, and I am working on it.

Since the Adams case was lost, we have been reorganizing our legal strategy. My main support committee and I, are in the process of hiring a new legal team. Bob Boyle, my long time friend and lawyer, will continue to be a key part of my defense. This new effort will require funds beyond those we have on hand. We will need to raise $30-40,000 to finance this final legal effort. With a clear understanding of the economic times and conditions I am calling upon those who can help, to help us. Anyone who can pledge future contributions, please contact: Gary Gillespie at 410-323-9200 or ggillespie@afsc.org for additional information.

If you would like to make a donation now, please make your check payable to Phillip Dantes, for: the case of Marshall Eddie Conway. Phil’s address is below:

Phillip Dantes
Wallace & Dantes, LLC
29 W. Susquehanna Ave., #505
Towson, MD 21204

Other support needs to be continued such as, letter writing, articles, website support, educational forums, rallies and protests, or projects in support of justice in this case.

The conditions around the world continue to rapidly, and in some cases radically, change with each passing day. We must start organizing and networking to survive this new economic/social political arrangement. An arrangement, that threatens to leave millions unemployed and underemployed, locked up and out in the distant future. I plan to continue writing updates but I hope our final legal efforts will put an end to this 39-year-old injustice. Thank you for your continuing support, please remain strong and continue to work for positive change.

In Struggle,
Eddie Conway
Jessup Correctional Institution
P.O. Box 534
Jessup, MD 20794