Jackie Kennedy's Cartier wristwatch to sell at Christie's

John Hancock

John Hancock

2017-05-15 09:50:58

A Cartier wristwatch owned by Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis will lead a Christie's sale of rare watches and historic memorabilia in New York next month.

The former First Lady was given the watch as a gift by her brother-in-law Prince Stanislaw Radziwill in 1963, and wore it for decades.

It is now expected to achieve $60,000 - $120,000 when it comes up for sale on June 21.

Throughout the early years of his presidency, John F. Kennedy had regularly encourage Americans to get more exercise, and had sparked a brief fad for a gruelling 50-mile hike known as the 'Kennedy March', 

In February 1963 Radziwill, family friend Chuck Spalding and secret service agent Clint Hill attempted their own hike, as the result of a bet with the President.

Accompanied by a medical team and Life Magazine photographer Mark Shaw, they set off along the Sunshine State Parkway and completed the trek in 19 hours.

Following the walk, Radziwill presented his sister-in-law her with the timepiece to commemorate the event, along with the engraving which recorded their time "Stas to Jackie 23 Feb. 63 2:05 am to 9:35 pm."

(Images: Christie

(Images: Christie's)

Jackie Kennedy also recorded the event for posterity. Having offered moral support for the walkers along their route, she painted a portrait of Radziwill and Spalding and gave it to her brother-in-law.

The artwork is also inscribed with the start and finish times of the walk, and has remained unseen by the public since it was painted more than 50 years ago.

Together, the watch and the painting have been described as "two of the most important historic artifacts to surface in recent years from the golden era of the Kennedy Presidency".
"The Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Cartier Tank is a watch full of emotion, love and history," said John Reardon, International Head of Christie’s Watches.

"Together with Jackie’s painting, these two objects capture the spirit of another era, a time where friendship and the 'can-do' optimism of the generation seemed to make anything possible.

"In this spirit, the consignor has offered to donate a portion of the proceeds to the National Endowment for the Arts. Christie’s Watches proudly offers this truly iconic timepiece and painting on June 21 in our New York Rockefeller Center Saleroom."

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