JFK’s Love Letter to Mary Pinchot Meyer Up for Auction (Updated)

June 10, 2016 Updated: October 5, 2018

Update: The letter has been sold for $88,970, according to RR Auction.

Just a month before his death, President John F. Kennedy tried to sweet-talk painter Mary Pinchot Meyer into a date. He wrote her a love letter, but never sent it.

Now the letter looks for a new domicile. Boston-based RR Auction will put the letter up for auction on June 16.

Written on White House notepaper, the letter lacks both addressee and a date, but according to RR Auction, Kennedy wrote it in October 1963. He was assassinated on Nov. 22, 1963.

The letter reads:

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. 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.

Kennedy’s secretary Evelyn Lincoln identified Meyer as the the intended recipient.

The auction firm expects to get at least $30,000 for the “exceedingly rare Kennedy letter boasting revelatory content on his personal life during the presidency.”

President John F. Kennedy's unsent letter to painter Mary Pinchot Meyer. (Courtesy of RR Auction)
President John F. Kennedy’s unsent letter to painter Mary Pinchot Meyer. (Courtesy of RR Auction)

“It’s something you wouldn’t expect to see from a president,” said Robert Livingston, an executive vice president at RR Auction, according to The New York Times.

It may be less of a surprise in the case of John F. Kennedy, who was posthumously a target of multiple allegations about his private life, including a story claiming he and Meyer had an affair.

Meyer was shot dead on a towpath in Georgetown less than a year after Kennedy’s assassination. Her murder was never solved after the man charged with killing her, Ray Crump, was found not guilty.

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