A handwritten love letter from President John F. Kennedy to his alleged mistress Mary Pinchot Meyer has surfaced in an online auction from Boston’s RR Auction.
“Why don’t you leave suburbia for once – come and see me – either here – or at the Cape next week or in Boston the 19th,” Kennedy writes in the four-page letter. “I know it is unwise, irrational, and that you may hate it – on the other hand you may not – and I will love it.”
“You say that it is good for me not to get what I want. After all of these years – you should give me a more loving answer than that. Why don’t you just say yes,” JFK continues.
He signs the note with a simple “J.”
The letter, said to be written a month before the president’s 1963 assassination, was never sent. It’s valued at $30,000.
“There’s a playfulness to him in the letter that you don’t see in JFK’s other correspondence,” RR auction spokesperson Bobby Livingston says of the item – believed to be kept by Kennedy’s secretary Evelyn Lincoln. “He is always quite reserved in his correspondence.”
Mary and her CIA agent husband Cord Meyer were friends of the Kennedys, living by John and wife Jackie in Washington, D.C. But Mary also knew John in high school.
She was found dead in Georgetown on October 1964 – a year after Kennedy’s letter was written – from a bullet wound to the head. Her murder is still unresolved.
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The Washington Times Herald writer first met Kennedy when he was 24, introducing him in a piece she wrote as “a boy with a future.”
In her 1943 typed letter to Kennedy – set to go for an estimated $6,000 – Arvad asks Kennedy for an interview, saying, “After all you can’t turn me down, can you? … I will, if necessary fly to San Francisco – and all for business …”
The Danish beauty then gets much more personal: “I don’t quite know what to write to you Jack dear, because if I follow my heart – it will be a love letter, and if I don’t, it will be stiff as an old poket [sic]. But you know me, I am on pins and needles, because I know you will be home soon. You do know – or don’t you – that you are the person in this world I would rather see than anybody – or is that a little too much of an admission?”
Arvad also gets sentimental in the letter, saying she’d recently seen a photo of him and a copy of his 1940 book Why England Slept. “I am sunk when I look at it too long,” she writes of the photo. “I promise to read it right off, and not stop till I get through – even if I die doing it,” she adds of the book.
Arvad’s affair with Kennedy is detailed in Barbara Leaming’s new biography, Kick Kennedy, about Kennedy’s sister Kathleen, who died in a plane crash at 28.
The two met in 1941, when Arvad was 32 and Kennedy was 28. The two kept their affair secret, as she was married at the time. Kennedy’s father Joe eventually “went into overdrive to end the affair,” Leaming writes, after Arvad’s former connections to Adolf Hitler put her under investigation by the FBI.
Online bidding for both letters – and a slew of other Kennedy memorabilia – begin June 16 and go through June 23. For more information, visit www.rrauction.com.