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Lot #39
John F. Kennedy 1957 Hyannisport Signed Mortgage Note to Father Joe Sr.

Extraordinarily rare mortgage note from JFK to his father for the future ‘Summer White House’ on the Cape

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Estimate: $4000+
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Extraordinarily rare mortgage note from JFK to his father for the future ‘Summer White House’ on the Cape

DS, one page, 8.5 x 13, January 2, 1957. Mortgage note reads, in full: “On the 2nd day of January, 1962, for value received, I promise to pay Joseph P. Kennedy of North Ocean Boulevard, Palm Beach, Florida, or order, the principal sum of Fifty Thousand ($50,000.00) Dollars, without interest. This note is secured by a mortgage of even date herewith on real property situate on Irving Avenue, Hyannisport, Massachusetts, and more fully described in said mortgage. Dated, the 2nd day of January, 1957.” Document is stapled into its original blue legal folder. In fine condition.

Having spent a great deal of his childhood at his parents’ summer cottage in Hyannis Port, JFK felt most at home on the water, often remarking, ‘I always come back to the Cape and walk on the beach when I have a tough decision to make.’ In 1956, while serving as Senator of Massachusetts, he and Jackie were delighted to buy their own house at 111 Irving Avenue, just two doors down from his parents. (Shortly after, Ted bought the house between the two—and later sold it to Robert—and their sister Eunice bought another a few doors away, rounding out the Kennedy Compound.) As his family and career grew, the small New England beach town became a landmark location, used not only as his personal home and ‘Summer White House’ but also as the base for his presidential campaign and the site of numerous important political engagements.

This document, the mortgage note for the purchase of the iconic home, reveals that the young couple did not find their place on the Cape without a little help. Kennedy's father, Joseph, paid for the house in full, enabling his son to pay a no-interest mortgage for the purchase price directly to him, avoiding the costly interest that would have come with a bank mortgage. Yet again, family ties held strong in the Kennedy clan. Exceedingly rare and important, this document holds the heart of the compound that has been ingrained in the public’s collective memory of America’s First Family, home to some of the most tragic and triumphant events in their lives.

Auction Info

  • Auction Title: Fine Autograph and Artifacts Featuring John F. Kennedy
  • Dates: #692 - Ended May 15, 2024

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