Signed book: Inaugural Address of John F. Kennedy. Washington, DC: privately-printed, 1961. Hardcover with slipcase, 7 x 10, eight pages. Boldly signed and inscribed on the first free end page in fountain pen, "For Chief Martinell, from John Kennedy, Christmas 1961." Autographic condition: fine, with a subtle band of toning along the left edge of the signed page. Book condition: VG+/None in a VG slipcase. Accompanied by Martinell's delegate pass to the "Bermuda Meeting" in December 1961, where President Kennedy met with British Prime Minister Harold Macmillan to discuss Cold War world affairs. William Martinell was a Chief Petty Officer on the White House medical staff and later served as an inspector of the limousine in which JFK was assassinated.
This is one of an unspecified limitation (generally believed to be about 100) of specially bound copies of President Kennedy's inaugural address given to his closest friends and staffers as Christmas gifts. In the address, Kennedy went over the major themes of his campaign and famously urged the American people, 'Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country.' A defining speech of the 20th century, historians regard it as the most significant inaugural since that of Lincoln, given from the same portico a hundred years earlier. A truly remarkable presentation copy of a most important speech.
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