Kennedy Watch Collection

kennedy family
The Kennedys were considered at some point to be America’s Royal Family. They were beloved and so admired, not just for their stature and remarkable achievements, but also for the effortlessly suave way they carried themselves.
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Their sartorial legacy and taste lives on, so much so that they still serve as the benchmark for sophistication. Surely, John F. Kennedy’s watches, and those of his family, would be deemed iconic.
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Here are the timepieces they wore:
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JACKIE KENNEDY’S CARTIER TANK

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If you look closely at any photo of Jacqueline Kennedy, you’ll notice one other consistency aside from her classic style: a Cartier Tank watch on her wrist. The watch is made of 18k gold and was a gift from her brother-in-law Prince Stanislaw Radziwill in 1963.
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It was accompanied by the dedication “February 23, 1963 2:05 am to 9:35 pm / Jackie to Stas with love and admiration.” In 2018,  it was auctioned off by Christie’s and sold for $395,000.
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JOHN F. KENNEDY’S OMEGA ULTRA THIN

pictured: Omega Ultra Thin Watch By Sandstein (Own work) licensed by CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
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When JFK took the oath of office on January 20, 1961, he wore an Omega Ultra Thin ref. OT3980 gifted to him by then Florida senator Grant Stockdale. On its caseback was the dedication “President of the United States John F. Kennedy from his friend Grant.” Interestingly, Stockdale gave the watch to JFK months before his win in November.
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The watch is now in the Omega Museum in Bienne, Switzerland after being bought for $420,000 in a 2005 auction.
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JOHN F. KENNEDY’S CARTIER TANK LOUIS

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In 1957, Jackie Kennedy gave JFK an 18k gold Cartier Tank Louis for their fourth wedding anniversary. Inscribed on the watch were his initials, the Kennedy family arms and the couple’s wedding date.
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It is also said to be the watch that he wore on his wrist the day he was assassinated in 1963. Jackie later gave it to his former secretary after his death.
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JOHN F. KENNEDY’S ROLEX DAY-DATE

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Perhaps the most notorious of JFK’s watches is the one he never wore. He is said to have a solid gold Rolex President Day-Date given by Marilyn Monroe on his birthday in 1962.
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The Rolex is engraved “Jack With Love As Always From Marilyn, May 29th, 1962.” Marilyn had given the watch to Kennedy’s aide Kenneth O’Donnell so he can pass it on to JFK, but was told to “get rid of it”, so the story goes.
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PHOTO CREDITS: Jackie Kennedy By US Embassy in New Delhi  licensed by CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons / JFK and Family in Hyannis Port By Cecil W. Stoughon ([1]) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons / John F. Kennedy Inaugural Speech by U.S. Embassy The Hague licensed by CC BY 2.0, via Flickr / By White House Photographs (JFK Library website) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
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