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Item   Title MB Now at Next bid Bids New bid Max bid  
149   John F. Kennedy  $200 $477 $525 11 You must login to place a bid.

#149 - John F. Kennedy

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Signed copy of JFK's first State of the Union
Description                           Estimate: $1,000+          

Rare TMS as president, sixteen pages, 8.5 x 14, January 30, 1961. An original White House manuscript of Kennedy's first State of the Union address, typed on official legal paper watermarked with the presidential seal. In addition to speech copies for the vice president and speaker of the House, signed manuscripts were also given to the Congressional Roll Call office for their records. In part: "It is a pleasure to return from whence I came. You are among my oldest friends in Washington—and this House is my oldest home. It was here, more than 14 years ago, that I first took the oath of Federal office. It was here, for 14 years, that I gained both knowledge and inspiration from members of both parties in both Houses…I speak today in an hour of national peril and national opportunity. Before my term has ended, we shall have to test anew whether a nation organized and governed such as ours can endure. The outcome is by no means certain. The answers are by no means clear. All of us together—this Administration, this Congress, this nation—must forge those answers…Life in 1961 will not be easy. Wishing it, predicting it, even asking for it, will not make it so. There will be further setbacks before the tide is turned. But turn it we must. The hopes of all mankind rest upon us—not simply upon those of us in this chamber, but upon the peasant in Laos, the fisherman in Nigeria, the exile from Cuba, the spirit that moves every man and Nation who shares our hopes for freedom and the future. And in the final analysis, they rest most of all upon the pride and perseverance of our fellow American Citizens." Signed at the conclusion in black ink. In fine condition.

Kennedy delivered his first State of the Union address before a joint session of Congress just ten days into his presidency, only the second time a newly elected president had chosen to do so; the first being his predecessor, Dwight D. Eisenhower. In his nearly 5,300-word speech, Kennedy promised to work closely with Congress, increase unemployment benefits, and offer tax incentives to businesses. He expounded on the potential threat of communism, but concluded his speech on a note of optimism: "The hopes of all mankind rest upon us—not simply upon those of us in this chamber, but upon the...spirit that moves every man and Nation who shares our hopes for freedom and the future."

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