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JFK memories on the auction block

Items
Some of the items to be auctioned   

Items range from presidential to personal

March 18, 1998
Web posted at: 1:40 p.m. EST (1840 GMT)

NEW YORK (CNN) -- There's John F. Kennedy's racing sloop. There are photographs, pens, invitations, rocking chairs and even a tweed hat -- many of them mementos of a presidency.

Most of the items to be auctioned Wednesday were collected or saved by his longtime private secretary Evelyn Lincoln.

Among the possessions is a sheet of hotel stationery with a few presidential doodles. Collector Robert White, who inherited the items from Lincoln, says Kennedy made the notes at a Houston hotel the night before he was assassinated in Dallas.

CNN's Tony Clark looks at the items in the collection
icon VXtreme streaming video (1:30)

Although many of the items are presidential cast offs, personal items also are being sold, such as Kennedy's college sweater and one of the first lady's trademark pillbox hats.

Among the documents is a handwritten will penned by Jacqueline Kennedy, giving everything to her young daughter Caroline.

College sweater
JFK's college sweater   

Another document is Kennedy's first attempt to write his inauguration address. White described it this way: "Kennedy took a yellow legal pad and he started to write, 'an inaugural is a beginning,' and then made a mistake, scratched it out and chucked it."

White noted that the handwritten draft of the entire speech is in the Kennedy library. "This is a piece of scrap that was thrown away. Mrs. Lincoln saved it from extinction."

The Kennedy children said Monday that some items are "intensely personal" and should not have been kept by Lincoln. Two such items were with Kennedy when he was shot: a black alligator briefcase and a watch Jackie Kennedy had given him on their fourth wedding anniversary.

Watch

Under a last-minute agreement reached Wednesday, White removed a few personal items from the auction, including two of JFK's diaries from 1951.

Earlier, at least seven items were taken out of the sale because of their historical significance. Among them was a desk Kennedy used to sign bills into law.

CNN's Tony Clark contributed to this report.

 
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