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JFK's love letters auctioned for $ 115,000

world Updated: Mar 05, 2010 12:38 IST
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An auction house in Chicago on Friday sold love letters and telegrams written by former US President John F Kennedy to his Swedish lover in the 1950s for over $ 115,000.

An anonymous West Coast collector won the online auction for the 11 letters and three telegrams with a bid of $ 97,500.

An 18.5 per cent buyer's premium was tacked on to come up with the final selling price of $ 115,537.50.

Legendaryauctions.com put up the correspondence -11 handwritten letters and three telegrams to Gunilla von Post by Kennedy while he was a US senator - for auction last month.

Doug Allen, the auction house's president, had said he believed the letters could fetch as much as $ 100,000. Legendary Auctions started the bidding online at $ 25,000.

Thirty-six year-old Kennedy had met von Post, 21 in August 1953, only a month before he was due to marry Jacqueline Bouvier.

In June the following year, having tracked down her address in Stockholm, Kennedy wrote to her saying: "I might get a boat and sail around the Mediterranean for two weeks - with you as crew".

In one of his next letters, Kennedy writes about "that beautiful, controlled face that still haunts me" of the lover he nicknamed "Gorilla".

In his last letter dated August 1955 Kennedy wrote, "I just got word today - that my wife and sister are coming here. It will all be complicated the way I feel now - my Swedish flicka (girl)".

"All I have done is sit in the sun and look at the ocean and think of Gunilla. All Love, Jack," one letter read.

In a 1997 book, Von Post had detailed her long-distance affair with Kennedy, whom she had met on the French Riviera in 1953.