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04-041

Estes Kefauver

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Carey Estes Kefauver, 1903-1963. Congressman and United States Senator from Tennessee. Wonderful political content Typed Letter Signed, Estes, with autograph postscript.  One page, 8” x 10˝”, November 7, 1955, on stationery of the United States Senate, Washington, D.C. 

One day short of a year before the 1956 presidential election, Kefauver candidly anticipates running for the Democratic nomination.  He thanks Arthur Clarendon Smith, president of the Washington, D.C., Democratic Club, for the club’s endorsement and solicits Smith’s input.  In part:  “I wish to thank you very sincerely for the endorsement . . . . I want you to know how much I appreciate your interest in trying to help me get the Democratic nomination in case I decide to run.  I am considering it very seriously and reports from all over the country look quite favorable.  I will have something to say definitely in a short time.  /  I hope you will keep in touch with me and pass along any ideas or suggestions you may have.”   In a handwritten postscript, Kefauver adds, “Hi Pal”.

Kefauver sought the Democratic presidential nomination in 1952 but lost to Adlai Stevenson, whom Harry S. Truman supported.  As this letter anticipates, Kefauver sought the nomination again in 1956.  Once more he lost to Stevenson, but the convention chose him as the vice presidential nominee over a young Massachusetts Senator named John F. Kennedy. Stevenson and Kefauver lost the 1956 election in a landslide to incumbents Dwight D. Eisenhower and Richard M. Nixon.

This letter has two normal mailing folds, neither of which affects the signature or the postscript.  It has tape stains at the corners from prior mounting and minor toning at the upper left.  Overall it is in fine condition.

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