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Lot 193

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JFK Assassination Dallas Invitation to Trade Mart, Signed by 17 VIPs from Kennedy's Personal Life & Administration

A vintage invitation to the November 22, 1963 luncheon at the Dallas Trade Mart, an event tragically preempted by assassination, signed by 17 individuals who featured prominently in the life and politics of 35th U.S. President John F. Kennedy (1917-1963). The signers include Kennedy's mother, sister, two in-laws, and many staff from his administration including Dean Rusk and James E. Webb. Provenance: From the collection of Ron Hoskins, assassinologist. 

The bifold cream invitation is embossed with printed calligraphy. Four 13-cent John F. Kennedy stamps are affixed to the corners, all cancelled and postmarked from JFK's birthplace of Brookline, Massachusetts or Newport, Rhode Island, where he was married. Two of the postmarks date November 22, 1968, the 5th anniversary of JFK's assassination. One postmark dates June 5, 1969 and one dates June 6, 1969, the last two commemorating the 1st anniversary of Robert F. Kennedy's shooting and death. The inner pages are blank. The signatures appear on the last page, which is also printed with invitation serial number 1925. Expected light folds, else near fine. Measures 14" x 9.875" laid out completely flat.

The signers include, from top to bottom:

- Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy (1890-1995), Kennedy's mother, signed as "Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy"

- Jean Kennedy Smith (1928-2020), Kennedy's youngest sister, signed as "Jean Kennedy Smith"

- Dean Rusk (1909-1994), U.S. Secretary of State during the Kennedy and Johnson administrations, signed as "Dean Rusk"

- James E. Webb (1906-1992), Administrator of NASA between 1961-1968, signed as "James E. Webb"

- Mamie Doud Eisenhower (1896-1979), former First Lady and wife of Kennedy's predecessor, 34th U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower, signed as "Mamie Doud Eisenhower"

- Robert S. McNamara (1916-2009), U.S. Secretary of Defense during the Kennedy and Johnson administrations, signed as "Robert S. McNamara"

- Virginia Joan Kennedy (born 1936), first wife of Kennedy's youngest brother Edward Kennedy, signed as "Joan Kennedy"

- Byron R. White (1917-2002), a Kennedy appointment as Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, signed as "Byron R White"

- Janet G. Travell (1901-1997), Kennedy's personal physician between 1960 and his assassination, signed as "Janet Travell, M.D."

- Robert Sargent Shriver, Jr. (1915-2011), husband of Kennedy's younger sister Eunice Kennedy and Director of the Peace Corps between 1961-1966, signed as "Sargent Shriver"

- Kenneth P. O'Donnell (1924-1977), Kennedy's close friend, special assistant, and White House Appointments Secretary during the Kennedy administration, signed as "Kenneth O Donnell"

- Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr. (1902-1985), Kennedy's appointment as U.S. Ambassador to South Vietnam and also Kennedy's erstwhile U.S. Senate and presidential/vice presidential ticket rival, signed as "Henry Cabot Lodge"

- John W. McCormack (1891-1980), a longtime Democratic Congressman from Massachusetts and Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives for part of Kennedy's term, signed as "John Jay McCormack"

- John A. Schank (?)

- John Jay McCloy (1895-1989), Kennedy's special advisor on disarmament and later a member of the Warren Commission, signed as "John J McCloy"

- Benjamin A. Smith II (1916-1991), who accepted Kennedy's Senatorial seat after the former resigned to assume the presidency, signed as "Ben A. Smith"

- William Willard Wirtz (1912-2010), U.S. Secretary of Labor during the Kennedy and Johnson administrations, signed as "Willard Wirtz"

President Kennedy was en route to the Trade Mart (now called the Dallas Market Center) to attend this luncheon when he was shot near Dealey Plaza. The 10-mile route from Love Field through downtown Dallas in a motorcade had been intended as a public relations opportunity. It was interrupted about three miles south of its intended destination--the Trade Mart--when the presidential motorcade raced instead to Parkland Memorial Hospital.

An eerie relic of Kennedyiana from a luncheon the assassinated president never attended, signed by those who loved him and with whom he worked.

This item comes with a Certificate from John Reznikoff, a premier authenticator for both major 3rd party authentication services, PSA and JSA (James Spence Authentications), as well as numerous auction houses.


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March 3, 2021 10:30 AM EST

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