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Leader of the Roman Catholic Church from 1963-78. Archbishop of Milan. Longtime Secretariat of State substitute (#2 in command). Continued the work of Vatican Council II begun by his predecessor Pope St. John XXIII.


ALS - Autograph Letter Signed, one page, January 1956. Written as archbishop of Milan to Mrs. Francesca de Gasperi (wife of Alcide - former Italian Prime Minister). Reads:  My dear Lady:  I really enjoyed the book that you sent to me with its kind dedication and note. His (Alcide's) voice resonates so close to me, who remains alive in my memory, in regret, with admiration.  I pray for your husband and for the comfort of you and your family. (Alcide) continues to guide us -- from the pages of this book.  He shows himself to be so rich in memory and never dies.  With respect, Yours Devotedly...


Francesca, the daughter of a wealthy merchant, was enrolled in the prestigious college of the Ladies of Sion, Trento, there she remained for five years. She then went to Ninfenburg, Germany (near Munich) to study German, on to Brighton, UK to study English. Given the era, Mrs. de Gasperi enjoyed a refined education and evolved into an independent woman. There appears to be some familial relationship between the Gasperi's and G.B. Montini (merits further research).  In fine condition.


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