Jackie Kennedy’s Last White House Days & What She Found in JFK’s Desk

Jacqueline Kennedy writing on the President's Oval Office desk n the spring of 1963.

Jacqueline Kennedy writing on the President’s Oval Office desk n the spring of 1963. (JFKL)

Two weeks to the day that her husband was assassinated, presidential widow Jacqueline Kennedy moved out of the White House. It was December 6, 1963.

This article has been converted into a pay-per-view ePublication, and is available here for reading and download in PDF form. It tells the real story of Jacqueline Kennedy’s last days in the White House, following her husbands assassination, including her visits to his burial site, packing and giving away his personal items, her famous Camelot interview with journalist Teddy White, the refurnishing of the Oval Office she never got to see, and what she found in her husband’s presidential desk there. It can be read in its entirety, and includes rare and previously unseen photographs. 

 


 

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Categories: eBook, First Ladies, History, Presidents, The Kennedys

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23 replies »

  1. According to Lady Bird Johnon’s autobiography, she was ‘superstitious’ on moving into the White House on December 7th, the anniversary of Pearl Harbor.

  2. hello, what amazing detailed article as usual, dear carl… love those JBK & RFK private / out-of-public-eye” moments of a grieving family, which -i tend to forget- are as human and mortal as anyone !!! i wish you happy hollidays, sir (PS: my old domain https://www.soundzen.org mentioned within your RFK posts, no longer work because it no longer belongs to me… could you edit it to https://www.soundzen.net instead, please? ) best regards, alexa from portugal.

  3. Thank you for the wonderful details and the scholarship of this poignant time that a majority of us could only imagine. I am most interested in reading your book on the Kennedys.
    Phil

  4. Wow — even I did not know some of these stories. Amazing research. Thank you Carl.

    • Thank you for saying that. Of course, it isn’t like I’ve got instant command of these facts – I vaguely recalled them all but had to go back and trace what happened on each of the succeeding last fourteen days of her White House residence. Anyway, few know better than you about the value of doing that perpetual research. Thanks…

  5. Yet another fascinating article (heartbreaking, too) The fact that she was so calm and in control in the days immediately following the assassination never ceases to amaze me. Writing all those personalized thank you notes and giving every single staff member (and waiting on the WH switchboard operators) the opportunity to speak to her just further confirms what a truly graceful and dignified person she was. Why did she regret having the plaque placed in the President’s Bedroom? I’m guessing because she thought, some time afterwards, that it was too private and personal?

    Thanks again for another great read!! –Anna

  6. Mr. Anthony
    Thank you for your wonderful post. The pictures and the details in the article are great. Good job!

  7. Bravo, Carl! I feel like I just spent those two weeks with Jackie and the children. Reading about her final day in and leaving the White House was particularly poignant. And the picture of Caroline in the White House theater rips one’s heart out — the change in her countenance is stark.

    Looking ahead, the reader has the advantage of knowing that chaos is on the horizon: Jackie trying to live in Georgetown, where there is virtually zero privacy…and, I believe, she loses her Secret Service protection?

    Am hopeful that you will be posting some pieces about her life immediately following the White House departure…

    One thing that has puzzled me a bit, prompted by your recent posts: Since Jackie’s Virginia ‘horse country’ home had just been completed, why didn’t she move there? It was private…built to her specifications…provided daily access to her beloved horses…and yet just outside of Washington. Has your research uncovered whether this option was ever considered? And, if not, why not?

  8. I just wanted to say that I like reading some articles and looking at pictures of JFK and Jackie Kennedy because I have over 6,300 pictures from magazines that I collected for the past 50 years. I was 13 when JFK died, I was in Europe where I grew up and I would find magazines full of pictures and started to put them in binders and never stopped.

    • That’s pretty astounding Elisabeth – what a unique archive. What do you do in the case of about 1995 to the present, the last twenty or so years when magazines and newspapers have pretty much disappeared. Do you find images online that work just as well? Your collection is surely one of the most unique about President Kennedy in the country.

  9. I love Jackie Kennedy Style, grace, and class she was one of a kind. She had on style. She was fashionable tall and slim. Like her I love sleeveless dress, pearls pumps.She is still fashion ionic. She always looked dressy even in jeans. Her grace she was beautiful inside out.After husband death sent out thankyou cards.Dhe celebrate her son bday. Even leaving flowers and note to Lady Bird. Jackie did everthing with steand grace and class. She is often illumated but willl never be duplicated.

  10. I’LL ALWAYS LOVE LOOKING BACK AT THE 60’S WITH JFK & JACKIE . IT WAS A MAGICAL TIME IN AMERICA . I SUPPOSE THIER YOUTH AND HAVING CHILDREN IN THE WHITE HOUSE ENHANCED THE IMAGE . THE SHOCKING END IN DALLAS WOULD HAVE SHATTERED A LESSER WOMAN BUT JACQUELINE CARRIED ON AS AN ICON FOR THE COUNTRY AND GREAT MOTHER . I GET PHYSICALLY ILL WHEN I SEE WHAT OUR NATION HAS BECOME AND WHAT NOW OCCUPIES THE EXECUTIVE OFFICE . THE NEW JACKIE KENNEDY ? OH MY GOD ! THANK YOU CARL FOR ALL YOUR HARD WORK . I’M ALMOST 70 , AND WEEP FOR WHERE THE USA IS HEADED . JFK WAS A PATRIOT WHO LOVED HIS COUNTRY !

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