We love this puzzle of a letter assumed to have been sent to Marilyn Monroe more than 60 years ago.
In 1955, Nobel Prize-winning author John Steinbeck is thought to have sent this beautiful, heart-warming and funny letter to Marilyn Monroe.
The letter, presumably written by “The Grapes of Wrath” and “Of Mice and Men,” was sent on behalf of Steinbeck’s nephew-in-law Jon Atkinson, who had a huge crush on the star.
We were so touched by the sentiment, humor and intention, we wanted to share it with you.
Below is an actual copy of the letter dated April 28, 1955, requesting a photo. We don’t know if Steinbeck actually wrote it or if he had his administrative staff typed it out? Or if it’s real? We will probably never know, but we sure do think it sounds like his writing.
We DO know that the letter was found in Marilyn Monroe’s estate archives after her death in 1962. The letter was later auctioned off for more than $3000.
One investigative reporter followed up with Atkinson, a retired minister, and his wife and interviewed them. The now elderly couple lives in Alabama and had never heard of Steinbeck’s letter nor had Steinbeck’s nephew-in-law received a personal photograph from Monroe. Atkinson did, however, say that receiving a photo from the iconic movie star sure would have been nice (We got a chuckle out of that♥).
Below is the actual letter that is being debated and discussed. We also typed it out for easier reading.
Enjoy this beautiful and touching story of intrigue and history.
In my whole experience I have never known anyone to ask for an autograph for himself. It is always for a child or an ancient aunt, which gets very tiresome, as you know better than I. It is therefore, with a certain nausea that I tell you that I have a nephew-in-law who lives in Austin, Texas, whose name is Jon Atkinson. He has his foot in the door of puberty, but that is only one of his problems. You are the other.
I know that you are not made of celestial ether, but he doesn’t. A suggestion that you have normal functions would shock him deeply and I’m not going to be the one to tell him.
On a recent trip to Texas, my wife made the fatal error of telling Jon I had met you. He doesn’t really believe it, but his respect for me has gone up even for lying about it.
Now, I get asked for all kinds of silly favors, so I have no hesitation in asking one for you. Would you send him, in my care, a picture of yourself, perhaps in pensive, girlish mood, inscribed to him by name and indicating that you are aware of his existence. He is already your slave. This would make him mine.
If you will do this, I will send you a guest key to the ladies’ entrance of Fort Knox and, furthermore, I will like you very much.
Thank You For Your Service, Major General Stewart
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