Fifty years ago on Valentine's Day, Jackie Kennedy gave the country a glimpse into her home via a televised tour of the restored White House. More than 80 million people watched the broadcast on CBS and NBC; the 31-year-old first lady won an Emmy for the program.
Personal papers released by the John F. Kennedy Library on Monday included the her script for the TV tour, filled with careful notes and edits by the first lady. She was personally involved in the renovation, delving deep into the White House to rediscover relics and put them back in the spotlight.
"When we first came here and started searching for old things, we found the pier table in the carpenter's shop," she says during the tour. "It was being used as a sawhorse." She had it restored and placed back in the same room where President James Monroe had originally displayed it.
She used old receipts and photographs to claim items that had left the building, among them paintings that had been relocated to the National Gallery of Art, rugs owned by Teddy Roosevelt, and a heavy oak desk that Queen Victoria gave to President Rutherford Hayes (known as the Resolute desk, it sits in the Oval Office itself).
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