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    Marilyn, JFK and Bobby in 1962 (pic: Cecil Stoughton, copyright Keya Morgan)

    A total of nine copies of The Secret Photo, the only known photograph of Marilyn Monroe with JFK and Bobby Kennedy, have been sold out on the first day of sale at 23,000 dollars.  The rare image was on offer at the Art and Artifacts Gallery in West Hollywood, California.

    The photo is on exhibition there until June 20. It was taken after Monroe sang Happy Birthday Mr. President at Madison Square Garden on May 19, 1962, the last major public appearance before her mysterious death the following August. Had she lived she would now be 84.

    The black-and-white photo, taken by White House photographer Cecil Stoughton, showed Monroe still wearing the infamously tight-fighting, sheer rhinestone-studded dress she wore when singing earlier at Madison Square Garden. The dress sold at auction in 1999 for £860,000. President Kennedy appears to be turning away from the camera, something he rarely did, while his brother, the U.S. attorney general, looks toward them.

    They were photographed many times but the Secret Service and the FBI confiscated every picture.  The negative for this one was missed because it was in the dryer when the agents came searching.

    Stoughton, who died in 2008, was reluctant to allow the image to become public until after former first lady Jacqueline Kennedy’s death in 1994. He made and signed 10 prints and sold them to filmmaker Keya Morgan. Nine go on sale next Tuesday. The 10th print was given to singer Michael Jackson, a big Monroe fan, two years ago.


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