[NIXON/KENNEDY ELECTION] The Campaign Speeches of Nixon of Kennedy, inscribed to William Safire by Richard Nixon and secretarially for John Kennedy.
Washington: GPO, 1961. Three thick volumes, being parts I-III of the Senate Freedom of Communications/Final Report number 994, the volumes providing the campaign speeches of Senator Kennedy, Vice President Nixon, and their Joint Appearances. Each in full red morocco gilt, the covers with "William Safire" at lower right, the spines tooled and lettered in gilt with raised bands, marbled endpapers, all edges gilt, the original pictorial wrappers reproducing campaign photographs bound-in. 9 1/2 x 6 inches (24 x 15 cm). Comprising: Part I, the Kennedy speeches, secretarially inscribed (likely in the hand of Priscilla Wear): "For Bill Safire/With very best wishes/John Kennedy", 1440 pp.; Part II, the Nixon speeches, inscribed authentically by Richard Nixon: "Best wishes to/Bill Safire/For whose never failing friendship and loyal support, particularly during the period covered by this volume, I shall always be grateful/Dick Nixon", 1366 pp.; and Part III, the Joint Appearances, with a typed letter with printed signature laid-in from Nixon to Safire dated 23 August 1962: "Thank you for your kindness and generosity in favoring me with the so very-handsomely bound volumes of the spoken words of our common Battle of 1960...", 699 pp. Minor wear to upper joints, particularly the Kennedy volume, the spines slightly faded, some toning within, each with the booklabel of William Safire.
An important set of the campaign speeches of the presidential election of 1960, inscribed to Nixon's speech writer William Safire by both candidates. Vice President Nixon faced little opposition in securing the Republican Party nomination; Junior Senator Kennedy gained momentum on the campaign trail and would overtake Nixon in popular opinion after their public - and first to be televised - debates. These volumes provide every word of every campaign speech and debate and the wrappers of the volumes, in a nod to the televising of the event just mentioned, provide grainy green images of the candidates replete with visible boom microphones and TV cameras. Safire would serve Nixon as speech writer, political advisor and public relations manager (the letter to him is addressed to him at Safire Public Relations, NY). Safire likely had these volumes bound himself and provided copies to Nixon as noted in the letter, the inscriptions likely dating to some time in 1961 or 1962. Given his association with Nixon and his general conservative politics, it seems quite brash for Safire to have sought an inscription from then President Kennedy, whose camp has provided the inscription, and we trace few artifacts of the campaign such as this, particularly with inscriptions to a figure so influential in Nixon's campaign as Safire.
C From the Collection of the late William Safire
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