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Jackie's Cartier Watch (with bonus painting) Sells for $379,500 at Auction to Kim Kardashian West

on Tue, 12/12/2017 - 21:45

The supporting article appeared in Forbes Magazine, June 21, 2017 and Town and Country 

The Watch and the Painting

A Cartier Tank watch owned by Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis sold in June 2017 for $379,500, more than tripling its high-auction estimate of $120,000 at Christie’s New York “Rare Watches and American Icons Sale.” The anonymous buyer was believed to be Kim Kardashian West. Kardashian has since posed for a photo shoot re-enacting Jackie's look of the 1960's presidency.

The 18k gold square-shaped watch manufactured in 1962 was given to the former first lady from her brother-in-law Prince Stanislaw “Stas” Radziwill in 1963. She was known to have worn the watch for decades and it can be seen on her wrist in many photos.
On the caseback is the engraving: "Stas to Jackie 23 Feb. 63 2:05 AM to 9:35 PM.” The times refer to the start and stop times of the “50-Mile Hike in Palm Beach” in 1963. The watch is accompanied by a previously unknown original painting that Kennedy Onassis made in 1963 as a gift for Stas Radziwill celebrating the hike with the dedication, “February 23, 1963 2:05 am to 9:35 pm / Jackie to Stas with love and admiration.”

The watch’s estimated selling price at the June 21 auction was $60,000–$120,000. But sold much higher partly because the watch comes with a very cool companion painting. The winning bidder was treated to an original painting by Jackie Kennedy created in 1963 as a gift for Stas Radziwill to celebrate the hike. It bears the dedication: “February 23, 1963 2:05 am to 9:35 pm / Jackie to Stas with love and admiration.” (Stas Radziwill and Chuck Spalding, both featured in the painting, were among the first to attempt the 50-Mile Hike.)

Christie’s said the watch and the accompanying painting, which was previously unknown to the public, are “two of the most important historic artifacts to surface in recent years from the golden era of the Kennedy presidency.” John Reardon, Christie’s international head of watches, said that the watch and painting are two objects that “capture the spirit of another era, a time where friendship and the ‘can-do’ optimism of the generation seemed to make anything possible.”

50-Miles in Palm Beach

On February 22nd 1963, Radziwill and Spalding took up the President's bet and set out for a 50-mile hike along the Sunshine State Parkway in Palm Beach at 2:05am. They wore hiking boots, but were accompanied by a car and an entourage who frequently radioed back to the President's house to request necessary rations (like steak, champagne, and orange juice), and Jackie Kennedy, her sister Lee Radziwill, and the President himself made frequent trips to the Parkway to check on the men.

But JFK only rode alongside the route for a couple miles in a white Lincoln convertible, waving two small American flags and sipping daiquiris – apparently not even attempting to complete any part of the challenge (presumably, his physical handicap prevented it). At the end of the hike, he presented each of his weary walkers with a tea bag inscribed with the words, “Medal of Honor,” in recognition of their accomplishment.


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