The gifts from this birthday party 60 years ago just keep on coming.
Marilyn Monroe’s sultry rendition of “Happy Birthday” during a gala celebrating President John F. Kennedy’s 45th birthday at Madison Square Garden on May 19, 1962, was followed by an exclusive afterparty at the East 69th Street townhouse of then-Democratic National Committee co- Chairman Arthur Krim and his wife, Dr. Mathilde Krim, who later founded the American Foundation for AIDS Research.
The family is now putting up the artifacts from that night on the auction block on Oct. 13 and the items — including a once-secret photo of Monroe and JFK sharing a moment — are expected to bring in $40,000 to $60,000.
The only known photo of JFK and Marilyn together that night, taken by White House photographer Cecil Stoughton, is among 18 other originals taken at the event.
The picture was “a highly suppressed image at the time,” because of rumors the two were having an affair, said Peter Costanzo, senior vice president of Doyle, the Upper East Side auction house selling the archive.
Other relics include the guest book from the star-studded evening with signatures from Monroe and Kennedy, as well as Robert F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, director Mike Nichols, Eunice Shriver, Harry Belafonte, Maria Callas, and Henry Fonda.
There is also a film reel of Marilyn’s iconic performance, one of her last before her death at age 36 less than three months later, sent to Krim by the producers of the ABC series “20/20” in 1980.
“We expect fierce competition between collectors of Kennedy material and Monroe material,” said Costanzo. “John Kennedy is one of the most sought-after, collected presidents out there after Washington and Lincoln. And Marilyn Monroe, I would say, is the most collected actor of her generation, without a doubt.”