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The patriarch of the Kennedy family writes a letter as U.S. Ambassador to Great Britain.
Typed Letter Signed: "Joseph P. Kennedy" as U.S. Ambassador to Great Britain, 1p, 8x10¼. London, 1938 December 5. To Henry H. Woodring, Secretary of War, Washington, D.C. Begins: "Dear Mr. Secretary". In full: "I have received your letter of November 22, 1936, in which you tell me of your friend, Captain John Mitford. I am having word sent to him to get into touch with me, and I shall be very glad, I assure you, to do whatever I can to be of help to him. With kindest regards, I am Sincerely yours." Joseph P. Kennedy (1888-1969), the patriarch of the political dynasty that included U.S. President John F. Kennedy and U.S. Senators Robert F. Kennedy and Edward M. "Ted" Kennedy, married Rose Fitzgerald, the eldest daughter of Boston Mayor John Fitzgerald, in 1914. An astute businessman, Kennedy became a bank president at the age of 25 and his involvement in various other industries, including Hollywood's film industry, and his investments in the stock market (he cashed out before the Crash of 1929) made him one of the richest men in America. Kennedy, who backed Franklin D. Roosevelt in the 1932 election, held a seat on the Securities and Exchange Commission during FDR's first term and chaired the Maritime Commission, mediating disputes between ship owners and unions, during FDR's second term. On January 17, 1938, Kennedy was named U.S. Ambassador to Great Britain. A staunch isolationist, he argued for the appeasement of Hitler and wanted the U.S. to stay out of any conflict that might occur between England and Germany. Disapproving of Roosevelt's growing involvement in the war, Kennedy resigned under pressure on October 22, 1940. His own political career doomed by his isolationist views, Kennedy groomed his sons for politics. After his eldest son, Joseph, Jr., was killed in combat during WWII, the mantle fell upon his second son, John F. Kennedy. Ironically, on December 19, 1961, just 11 months after he witnessed his son inaugurated as President, Joseph suffered a stroke and was unable to speak for the remainder of his life. He died in 1969 at the age of 81. HARRY HINES WOODRING (1890-1967), a former Governor of Kansas (1931-1933), was named Assistant Secretary of War in 1933. Upon the death of George H. Dern in 1936, Woodring became Acting Secretary of War before being confirmed as Secretary of War. He resigned in 1940 over a dispute with FDR over deployment of B-17s to Britain while the U.S. was still a neutral country. Lightly creased. Soiled at lower blank margin, staple holes and rust stains at upper left corner, paper clip stain touches 1 word of type. Receipt stamp at lower right margin, "John Minton" marked with blue pencil. Overall, fine condition.

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Born: September 6, 1888
Died: November 18, 1969

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