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    Dwight and Mamie Eisenhower: An Important Archive of Letters to Republican National Committee Chairman Ray Bliss Archive of 20 typed letters signed, most 7" x 10.5" and on Eisenhower's personal letterhead, and all with their original mailing evelopoes. All very fine condition. Includes 15 signed "D.E.", 4 signed "D.D.E.", plus an outstanding personal note from Mamie. It is not surprising that these were signed with initials rather than full signatures, as they were to an intimate and frequent correspondent. Covering the period from October 12, 1966, through October 28, 1968, just months before Eisenhower's death.

    After leaving the Presidency in 1961, Ike kept an active hand in Republican Party politics. The most significant letter of the group is a two-page November 25, 1966 missive marked twice as "Personal and Confidential." It discusses various thoughts and plans to "persuade Republican leaders to avoid any divisive efforts, certainly during the year 1967." Ike continues, "I think it was Walter Judd who thought we should forswear starting any personal booms during '67, at least not until Christmas of that year...One of my correspondents suggested I hold a lunch and should invite Nixon, Rommey, Percy, Reagan, Rockefeller, and of course yourself. It would be the purpose of you and me to urge upon prospective aspirants (to the Presidency) the need for speaking of all the others only in favorable terms. (If that were impossible, the next best thing would be to keep silent). During 1967, all these prospective, when questioned by the press, would reply merely in the equivalent of 'no comment'."

    Ike goes to suggest that, in lieu of a luncheon,"Bliss invite all these men, as well as newly elected, Republican Senators and Governors to an Advisory Committee meeting to discuss in a very dispassionate way the kind of measures all of us could take to avoid divisive tactics." In 1968 the Party would see perhaps its largest and most ideologically diverse field of Presidential aspirants ever and her Eisenhower anticipates a bloody dog fight and seeks to preserve Party unity. He adds a holographic postscript. "P.S - Before sending this I talked to you on the phone. But I am sending it along merely as an 'aide memoirs'.

    Other topics range from Republican Party affairs to personal notes, responses to invitations, etc. The last two written from Walter Reed Hospital, a frequent home for Eisenhower in his final months, as his heart slowly but steadily gave out.

    In addition to these letters, there is a wonderful TLS from Mamie Eisenhower on her personal stationery, dated April 12, 1969, after the Generals' death. She types "The burden of grief has been lessened by the kind thoughts of so many of our friends and the knowledge that the entire country is sharing my sadness". Then she adds a holographic postscript: "P.S.- How happy I am that 'Ike' lived to see victory for the 'grand old party' (in the fractious 1968 Presidential election) MDE"

    A great archive with impeccable provenance, having obtained directly from the nephew of Ray Bliss.Accompanied by LOA from PSA/DNA.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    February, 2006
    20th-21st Monday-Tuesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 6
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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