Typed letter signed (TLS) “Lyndon B. Johnson” AS PRESIDENT, April 4, 1968, White House letterhead, Washington, to Edward G. Robinson in Beverly Hills, CA, in full:
I am proud to have your continued confidence. My decision was difficult, but I have the faith to believe that it will prove wise and healing in helping to unite Americans and so advance the day of peace.
There is no higher or more urgent interest. I ask your hand in this vital purpose, with all gratitude and hope.
The difficult decision mentioned by Johnson in his letter was his decision not to seek his reelection as President, which he announced to the American people on March 31, 1968 (he also announced that he would stop the bombing in most of North Vietnam to seek a negotiated end to the war). Without the pressures of an election campaign, Johnson had hoped to complete a number of important initiatives, including a new effort to combat urban poverty. His plans, however, were cut short by a tragic event. On the very same day he sent this letter, April 4, 1968, civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated outside a motel in Memphis, Tennessee. King’s death caused widespread riots in a number of cities, including Washington, which effectively deterred Johnson from pursuing his final grand plans of urban renewal during his last days in office.
Edward G. Robinson was a stage and screen actor during Hollywood’s Golden Age.
The letter is matted and framed together with a photographic print (12 x 7 inches) of Johnson and Martin Luther King Jr. conversing at the White House to an overall size of 17.25×22.5. There are some dings to the frame and some tape remnants on the front.
Accompanied by a Letter of Authenticity from PSA/DNA.