Nov 20, 2014 - Sale 2367

Sale 2367 - Lot 142

Price Realized: $ 3,500
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 2,000 - $ 3,000
HUMILIATING THE DAUGHTERS OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION KENNEDY, JACQUELINE. Autograph Letter Signed, as First Lady, to U.S. Attorney General Nicholas Katzenbach ("Dear Mr Katzenbach"), asking whether there are many "John Birchers" among the living members of the Daughters of the American Revolution, explaining that she wants to snub the DAR by not inviting them to a tea she would hold for members of the Daughters of the Cincinnati, and, in a postscript, conveying that her husband says that her letter should be censored before passing its instructions along. 4 pages, 4to, White House stationery, written on two sheets; horizontal folds. With the original envelope. Washington, 23 April [1962: from postmark]

Additional Details

". . . I thought--with malicious pleasure at humiliating the D[aughters of the] A[merican] R[evolution]--that I could give a tea for the Daughters of the Cincinnati, of which I am a member. What I would like to know is--are they as riddled with John Birchers as the DAR? If so, I won't give the tea.
"I really don't approve of these ancestry organisations, especially for women, but my father was so proud of belonging to it (he was for Taft, McCarthy & Jack!) and my aunts just popped me into it.
"They seem rather harmless as you never read about them . . . . I just wanted to make sure General [Edwin] Walker's mother isn't a member. I fear they probably are a bit too reactionary to give a reception for.
". . . [Members of the DC] all have to be descendants of officers in the Revolution . . . I believe the DAR--with all their snobbishness--can just descend from any old camp follower who marched along beating a drum.
"Now that they won't give me the [James] Monroe chair that belongs in the W[hite] House . . . it would be so pleasant to make them think their origins are so dubious we won't let them in either.
"Anyway if someone hasn't enough work to do, perhaps you could drop this little message on his desk."
The postscript: "Not this hand written message--my husband says--but a censored version of it."
In 1817, President James Monroe had ordered a Bellangé suite of furniture for the White House. One of a pair of chairs made its way into the Washington museum of the Daughters of the American Revolution, while the chair's mate remained at the White House. In October of 1961, Jacqueline Kennedy asked the DAR to loan the Monroe chair to the White House so that the pair could be reunited. The DAR declined to do so.