Interview with Arthur Eve

The next question is, you're leaving the yard, and so I want you to recap, recall, embracing Big Black. Just the feelings between the inmates and the observes when you left that last time.


The hostages appealed to the state not to come in, not to kill, that, ah, the inmates requests were, ah, were right, ah, on that last day we were there. I mean it was a very emotional kind of exchange from the hostages and from everyone.** And many of us had planned to stay in there and, and spend the night and, and to stay right in there with the inmates. And it was the inmates who said, "We want you men to leave because we believe the state is going to come in and they're going to kill all of us. And we need to have someone to tell the true story on Attica." And so the inmates made us leave. They said, "Go out of here. Get out of here." And one offered to give me, ah, ah, the tapes that they had been taping, that whole dialogue in the prison had been put on tape in the yard and I said, "No we'll get it tomorrow," and so, you know, and so I didn't take it and that's one thing that I re--I really regret that, not taking it. But it was a very emotional period in leaving and, ah, as we left, Big Black who was in charge of security, ah, he and I embraced each other and we cried in each other's arm and it was a very, you know, they sensed and they had obviously a better knowledge of the mentality of the system than we did and so many of us probably owe our lives to them for getting us out of there. But it was a very emotional, ah, parting. And the next time I saw Big Black they had him on a table out in the yard after the state had taken over.