Welcome Back

By Steven L. Brawley, Editor-in-Chief

October 23, 2014: Welcome back to pinkpillbox (PPB).

Since 2003, PPB has been celebrating the style and substance of Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis and her influence on pop culture.

PPB strives to offer its readers informative and entertaining features that bring to life Jackie's passions and her impact on the role of the First Lady, interior design, historic preservation, beauty, fashion, entertaining, editing/publishing, and so much more.

While Jackie is PPB's inspiration and creative muse, we delve into a wide range of historical figures, places, and events. If you have a story idea, please let us know.

What's up with my Jackie obsession? I first met JBKO when I was age five at my grandmother's house in St. Louis. Grandma Brawley had one of the mass produced framed prints of President and Mrs. Kennedy by photographer Yousuf Karsh hanging in her living room. Grandma would tell me about the young couple, their children, and how a bad man killed the President. I was transfixed right away.

Read more: Welcome Back

Pink Pillbox Hat History

Research by Brandon Wolf

Fall/Winter 1961

  • The hat is made to coordinate with Jackie's Chanel designed pink suit using the same raspberry pink Linton Tweeds fabric with a dark navy blue trim

March 26, 1962

November 22, 1963 (9 am to 8 pm)

  • Jackie Kennedy places the pink pillbox on her hair
  • Jackie enters the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce breakfast, wearing the pillbox hat
  • President and Mrs. Kennedy leave Ft. Worth from Carswell AFB, via Air Force One
  • President and Mrs. Kennedy arrive at Dallas Love Field, via Air Force One
  • The Kennedys and the Connallys enter the Presidential limousine, and begin the motorcade through Dallas
  • Jackie's vibrant pink hat is easily spotted by the crowds
  • The Presidential limousine turns from Main Street onto Houston Street
  • The Presidential limousine turns from Houston Street onto Elm Street
  • President Kennedy is assassinated - Jackie's hat is spattered with blood and brain matter
  • Jackie yanks the hat from her head, as the limousine rushes to Parkland Hospital
  • President Kennedy is taken to Trauma Room 1 in Parkland Hospital
  • Agent Paul Landis puts the hardtop on the limousine and picks up the pillbox hat lying on the floor of the limo
  • Agent Landis gives the hat to ‘someone at Parkland’
  • The hat is put into a large bag and given to Agent Clint Hill
  • Agent Hill gives the bag to Mary Gallagher (Jackie's secretary)
  • President Kennedy is pronounced dead
  • Jackie leaves Parkland with her husband’s body, in a hearse
  • Jackie and Mary Gallagher climb the steps to Air Force One
  • Mary Gallagher gives the bag to Dick Giordano, JFK’s luggage master
  • Dick Giordano gives the bag to Boots Miller, who holds it until Air Force One arrives in Washington
  • Dick Giordano takes the bag to a White House Police officer, with instructions to give it to Agent Hill
  • The unnamed White House Police officer gives the bag to Agent Bob Foster who has just returned from Janet Auchincloss’ home, bringing Maud Shaw and John Jr. and Caroline with him
  • Agent Foster walks into the Map Room and looks in the bag and recognizes the pillbox hat
  • Agent Foster tells an unnamed White House Police office that he is not Agent Hill - he is very angry at being mistaken for Agent Hill
  • Last known location of the pillbox hat is in the White House Map Room after 8 pm, no further information on its movement is public knowledge

Where is the hat? Part 1

Where is the hat? Part 2 

Sept 26 1962

Notes: Reviewing plans for preservation of Lafayette Square, Washington, DC.

Source: JFK Library. Edited by Steven L. Brawley.


Letters Written by Jackie

Jackie was a prolific letter writer. They provide us further insight into her most private thoughts. Some were simple thank you's, while others advocated for the historic preservation of famous New York City landmarks. Several of Jackie's letters have come up for auction over the years, creating questions over ownership. When Jackie died, she gave her copyright interests and all of her writings to her children.

“I request, but do not direct, my children to respect my wish for privacy,” she wrote in her will.

An inventory of Jackie's letters include:

  • Childhood letters/telegrams to family
  • The "R. Beverley Corbin Jr." letters (auctioned in 2011 for $134,500)
  • The "Father Leonard/Irish Priest" letters (2014 auction cancelled)
  • White House official letters and informal memos
  • Marie Tippit letter (November 30, 1963)
  • Khrushchev letter (December 1, 1963)
  • The "Father Richard McSorley" letters (sourced in Thomas Maier’s The Kennedys: America’s Emerald Kings)
  • 1040 era letters
  • Editor job letters/correspondence

Notes: Jackie favored stationery by Smythson of Bond Street and Mrs. John L. Strong Stationery. Her favorite color - "Nile Blue."


Copyright Steven L. Brawley, 2002-2015. All Rights Reserved.