[Translator’s notes appear in square brackets]

[Personal information has been redacted.]


[Date:] 14 Aban 1318 [6 November 1939]

The Respected Cabinet


With respect, I bring to your attention that the marriage between me, Fatemeh Khamasi and Mohammad Vatani on 21 Ordibehesht 1318 [12 May 1939] took place according to the ordinances of the Baha’i religion and given that an office to register the mentioned wedding was not appointed [I was unable to do so].

According to the Baha’i beliefs we are obliged to obey government rules and regulations and not divert from them even [to the extent of] a hair’s breadth, except on matters of conscience, which includes excusing us from following the traditional ceremonies of other religions and beliefs, so for this reason, to enable us to fulfil our responsibility and register our marriage on the government’s forms, I immediately sent a copy [of deed of marriage] to the local Census and Personal Status Office and reported the circumstances [of our marriage] to the respectable Ministry of Justice and the Head Office of Bureau of Statistics. Now, without any wrongdoing or committing any crime, we have been subjected to harassment. After interrogating us, the [public] prosecutor for Semnan has asked for bond of 2000 rials cash.

From 6 Aban [1318] [29 October 1939] until now my husband has been in jail, which is causing anxiety and distress to us, the defenceless people. What crime has been committed that we are punished with such hardship?  To refer to the [marriage registration] Office of the 4 [other religions] was not possible for the Baha’is because those offices are only for 4 religions (Judaism, Zoroastrianism, Christianity, Islam). We are not part of [those] religions. We reported the time of our marriage to the relevant authorities, therefore we are not criminals or guilty of disobedience to the provisions of the [laws of the] country. I am imploring that great Cabinet for mercy by putting a stop to our problems so that we can live in peace and carry on our business affairs under the protection of the government.


Yours humbly,

Fatemeh Khamasi