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Free Bobby and the New Haven Panther 9

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    United States (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1970 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Paper and ink

  • Credit Line:

    Gift of the American Friends of the V&A; Gift to the American Friends by Leslie, Judith and Gabri Schreyer and Alice Schreyer Batko

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level C, case 1B, box LS2

The legal trial of the "New Haven Nine" concerned nine members of the Black Panther Party who were charged in connection with a brutal murder. The severely tortured body of Alex Rackley was found in a Connecticut river. Rackley was himself a former Black Panther but was believed to be a police informant by Party members. The trial became a symbolic political and media event, raising national awareness of the Panthers. The case was significant because the brutal crime at its centre was largely subsumed by the dramatic split in the Panthers' public perception as either violent and threatening militants or victimised and oppressed freedom fighters. Campus radicals at Yale University rallied around the defendants, believing the case to be a further example of injustice towards black Americans.

Physical description

Portrait format poster with a grid composition. The Black Panther Party's symbol, a stalking panther lunging forward, is depicted behind bars.

Place of Origin

United States (made)


ca. 1970 (made)



Materials and Techniques

Paper and ink

Marks and inscriptions

Free/ Bobby/ &/ The New/ Haven/ Panther/ 9
Printed in black on white in the upper left corner

written vertically along a section of the left margin

SAT. 8:00 pm./ APRIL 18/ BRANFORD/ DINING HALL/ $2.00 couple/ $1.50 single/ 'the morning' & films


Height: 35.5 cm, Width: 27.1 cm

Descriptive line

"Free Bobby and the New Haven Panther 9" poster. United States, ca. 1970

Production Note

Distributed and posted at Yale University Law School, New Haven, Connecticut on 18 April 1970


Paper; Ink

Subjects depicted

Panther; Propaganda; Politics; Freedom; Prison


Prints; Propaganda; Black History; Posters


Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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