One of Early Hollywood's Greatest Scandals [Trial]. Arbuckle, Roscoe [1887-1933]. Rappe, Virginia [1895-1921]. Transcript of Testimony, Taken at the Coroner's Inquest, On September 12th., 13th., And 14th., 1921, Into the Death of Miss Virginia Rappe. [San Francisco, 1921]. 232 ff. Octavo (11" x 8"). Contemporary cloth, gilt title to front board. Light rubbing and soiling to boards and extremities, light fading to spine, a few small holes to rear joint, spine ends and corners lightly bumped, hinges reinforced with cloth. Typed text to rectos, underlining and marginal marks in pencil to a few leaves, internally clean. $1,500. * Rappe, a young film actress, died after attending a party hosted by prominent actor, director and comedian Roscoe "Fatty" Arbuckle at San Francisco's St. Francis Hotel. She was discovered in Arbuckle's suite with a ruptured bladder; an acquaintance also at the party, Bambina Maude Delmont, accused Arbuckle of having caused the injury by violent sexual assault. Despite holes in Delmont's account and the testimony of other witnesses that Rappe suffered from chronic bladder infections, the inquest determined that her injuries were caused by "the application of some force...by one Roscoe Arbuckle" and suggested that he be indicted for manslaughter. Delmont's testimony, which appears in full in the present record, fell apart by the time Arbuckle went to trial on manslaughter charges (reduced from capital murder). Prior to the scandal, he had been a popular and well-respected Hollywood figure, mentoring entertainment icons like Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton and Bob Hope. The trials and subsequent publicity destroyed his career despite his ultimate exoneration. His name immediately became a byword for Hollywood excess and debauchery. The coroner's jury did not fail to make this association themselves, and recommended explicitly that Arbuckle be prosecuted in part "so that San Francisco shall not be made the rendevous [sic] of the debauchee and gangster" (232). Likely produced as one of a handful of copies for those associated with the Arbuckle trial, this transcript provides an unparalleled look into the evidence behind one of early Hollywood's greatest scandals.
Book number 73943