In 1960 a Retired Postal Worker Almost Killed JFK

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In November of 1960, John Fitzgerald Kennedy was elected President of the United States. Three years later, he was assassinated in Dallas. But Richard Paul Pavlick had gotten close enough to kill JFK first.

On December 11, 1960, JFK was the President-Elect and Richard Paul Pavlick was a 73-year-old retired postal worker. Both were in Palm Beach, Florida. JFK was there on a vacation of sorts, taking a trip to warmer climates as he prepared to assume the office of the President. Pavlick had followed Kennedy down there with the intention of blowing himself up and taking JFK with him.

His plan was simple. He lined his car with dynamite -- "enough to blow up a small mountain," according to a CNN report -- and outfitted it with a detonation switch. Then, he parked outside the Kennedy Palm Beach compound and waited for the President-Elect to leave his house to go to Sunday Mass. Pavlick's aim was to ram his car into JFK's limo as he left his home, blowing both assassin and politician to smithereens.

But JFK did not leave his house alone that morning. He made his way to his limo with his wife, Jacqueline, and children, Caroline and newborn John, Jr., with him. While Pavlick was willing to kill their husband and father, he did not want to kill them, so he resigned himself to trying again another day.

He would not get a second chance at murderous infamy. On December 15th, he was arrested by a Palm Beach police officer working off a tip from the Secret Service.

Pavlick's undoing was the result of deranged postcards he sent to Thomas Murphy, then the Postmaster of Pavlick's home town of Belmont, New Hampshire. Murphy was put off by the strange tone of the postcards and his curiosity led him to do what Postmasters do -- look at the postmarks. He noticed a pattern: Pavlick happened to be in the same general area as JFK, dotting the landscape as Kennedy traveled. Murphy called the local police department who in turn called the Secret Service, and from there, Pavlick's plan unraveled.

The would-be assassin was committed to a mental institution in January 1961, a week after Kennedy was inaugurated as the 35th President of the United States, pending charges. These charges were eventually dropped as it became increasingly clear that Pavlick acted out of an inability to distinguish between right and wrong (i.e. he was legally insane). Pavlick remained in institutions until December of 1966, nearly six years after being apprehended. He died in 1975.

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iStock
New York City's Famed Katz's Delicatessen Has Launched a Monthly Meat Subscription Service
iStock
iStock

Katz’s Delicatessen in New York City makes a legendary pastrami sandwich, with some even calling it the best the city has to offer. Now, you can whip up your own New York-style Reuben when you get the deli’s signature meat (and accoutrements) delivered right to your door.

As spotted by Condé Nast Traveler, the deli is launching a monthly meat subscription service with nationwide deliveries. For $150 a month or $1500 a year, on the second Thursday of each month subscribers will receive a package with enough food to feed a family of (at least) six. June’s “pastrami package,” for instance, comes with a pound of sliced juicy pastrami, a medium whole pastrami (weighing between 4.1 and 4.7 pounds), a pound of deli mustard, a quart of pickles, and a loaf of rye bread.

To top it off, one or two pieces of merchandise will be thrown in each month, so if you want a pair of Katz’s $16 camouflage-patterned “salami socks,” now’s your chance. (Katz's was founded in 1888, and the socks reference the deli’s World War II-era slogan, “Send a salami to your boy in the Army.”)

Each month features a different seasonal theme, including a griller package in July, a beach package in August, and a Halloween package in October, which comes with Jewish delicacies such as sliced tongue, kishka (stuffed intestine), chopped liver, and of course, more pastrami.

According to Katz’s, their meat-curing process takes 30 days, which is significantly slower than other commercial delis that use a 36-hour curing method. That's because no chemicals or additives are injected into the meat to cure it faster.

Ready to sign up? You can place your order here, but keep in mind that you’ll have to order in three-month increments if you’re not selecting the year-long deal.

[h/t Condé Nast Traveler]

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USPS
USPS Is Issuing Its First Scratch-and-Sniff Stamps This Summer
USPS
USPS

Summertime smells like sunscreen, barbecues, and—starting June 20, 2018—postage stamps. That's when the United States Postal Service debuts its first line of scratch-and-sniff stamps in Austin, Texas with perfumes meant to evoke "the sweet scent of summer."

The 10 stamps in the collection feature playful watercolor illustrations of popsicles by artist Margaret Berg. If the designs alone don't immediately transport you back to hot summer days spent chasing ice cream trucks, a few scratches and a whiff of the stamp should do the trick. If you're patient, you can also refrain from scratching and use them to mail a bit of summer nostalgia to your loved ones.

Since it was invented in the 1960s, scratch-and-sniff technology has been incorporated into photographs, posters, picture books, and countless kids' stickers.

The first-class mail "forever" stamps will be available in booklets of 20 for $10. You can preorder yours online before they're unveiled at the first-day-of-issue dedication ceremony at Austin's Thinkery children's museum next month.

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