John and Jacqueline Kennedy Signed Holiday Card
Exceptionally rare one-of-a-kind 1963 "Hanukah" card signed by the President and First Lady 48 hours before leaving for Dallas
According to Mary Evans Seeley’s book “Season’s Greetings from the White House,” Hallmark published over 2,200 White House holiday cards bearing the printed sentiment ‘With our wishes for a Blessed Christmas and a Happy New Year,’ the majority featuring facsimile signature of the president and first lady.
A letter dated November 14, 1963, from Hallmark V. P. Jeannette Lee, informed Major General C.V. Clifton, Jr., Kennedy’s military aide, that 500 unsigned cards would be shipped directly to the White House, awaiting the President upon his return. There were an additional 150 cards with the message, "With best wishes for a Happy New Year," presumably intended primarily for Jews.
After attending a test launch of a Polaris missile at Cape Canaveral and then flying south to Palm Beach on November 16th, President Kennedy made speeches in Tampa and Miami and returned to Washington around midnight two days later on November 18th; the blank cards having already arrived and awaiting his signature. President Kennedy must have signed this card on November 19th or November 20th. On the morning of November 21st, President and Mrs. Kennedy left for Texas, where the president was assassinated the following afternoon. The cards were never mailed.
Research indicates that there are a mere five other known Kennedy-signed 1963 holiday cards in existence, and this is the only non-denominational signed example experts have encountered. A truly rare card further enhanced by the presence of both the President and First Lady.
Official Hallmark card issued during the 1963 holiday season, featuring an image of a nativity scene on the front, measuring 4.5 x 6.5 closed, signed inside in bold ink as president, “John Kennedy,” and as first lady, “Jacqueline Kennedy.”
The image on the front is identified as“Creche in East Room, The White House,” and a gilt-embossed presidential seal and engraved holiday greeting appear above the signatures, reading: “With best wishes for a Happy New Year.”
In fine condition.