Mary Pinchot Meyer - Painters, Life Achievements and Personal Life

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Mary Pinchot Meyer's Personal Details

Mary Pinchot Meyer was an American journalist and painter who became famous for her alleged affair with the former US president John F Kennedy

InformationDetail
BirthdayOctober 14, 1920
Died onOctober 12, 1964
NationalityAmerican
FamousJournalists, Painters, Artists & Painters, Artists, Media Personalities, Journalists
City/StateNew York City, New Yorkers
SpousesCord Meyer (m. 1945–1958)
Known asMary Eno Pinchot Meyer
Childrens Michael Pinchot Meyer, Quentin Meyer
Universities
  • Brearley School
  • Vassar College
Birth PlaceNew York City, New York
GenderFemale
FatherAmos Pinchot
MotherRuth Pickering Pinchot
Sun SignLibra
Born inNew York City, New York
Famous asPainter & Journalist
Died at Age43

// Famous Painters

Mary Pinchot Meyer's photo

Who is Mary Pinchot Meyer?

Mary Pinchot Meyer was an American journalist and painter who became famous for her alleged affair with the former US president John F Kennedy. As a journalist, Mary wrote for ‘Mademoiselle,’ the ‘United Press,’ and ‘The Atlantic Monthly.’ She began painting after she decided to become a homemaker. Her art was selected to be part of the ‘Pan American Union Art Exhibit’ at the ‘Museum of Modern Art’ in Buenos Aires. She got married to Cord Meyer, an official of the ‘Central Intelligence Agency’ (CIA), in 1945. It was after her divorce that rumors of her affair with Kennedy started surfacing. In June 2016, a love letter said to have been written by Kennedy to Meyer was auctioned for $89,000. Meyer was shot dead by a hitman in 1964, while she was on her daily walk. Her murder remains an unsolved mystery to date. A lot of speculations were made on her death. Many people still believe that the ‘CIA’ was involved in her murder, since she was always critical about the agency. Ray Crump, Jr., the accused, was acquitted in July 1965.

// Famous Journalists

Childhood & Early Life

Mary Eno Pinchot Meyer was born into a wealthy family in New York City, on October 14, 1920. Her father, Amos Pinchot, was a lawyer and a member of the ‘Progressive Party.’

Her father also funded the socialist magazine ‘The Masses.’ Her mother, Ruth Pinchot, was a journalist and wrote for magazines such as ‘The New Republic’ and ‘The Nation.’

Mary and her sister, Antoinette, were raised in Milford, Pennsylvania. She was the niece of Gifford Pinchot, two-time governor of Pennsylvania.

She attended ‘Brearley School’ and then went to ‘Vassar College’ to study journalism. She graduated in 1942 and started writing for the ‘United Press’ and ‘Mademoiselle.’

She was also a member of the ‘American Labor Party.’

Career & Life

Mary attended the ‘UN Conference on International Organization’ in San Francisco with Cord Meyer. Mary and Cord got married on April 19, 1944.

She was working as the editor for ‘The Atlantic Monthly’ when she got married. She decided to quit work after the birth of her children. It was around this time that she took her art seriously and began attending the ‘Art Students League of New York’ to study painting.

Cord Meyer was a ‘Marine Corps’ lieutenant who was elected as the president of the ‘United World Federalists’ (UWF) in May 1947. Mary wrote for the ‘UWF’ journal.

Cord joined the ‘CIA’ in 1951. However, whether he had secretly worked for them earlier is not known.

After his inclusion in the ‘CIA,’ the family moved to Washington DC. Mary had no problem in being critical about the ‘CIA,’ although her husband worked for the organization.

In 1954, Cord lost interest in his job with the ‘CIA’ and began looking for a job with publishers in New York. However, he failed to bag a job. Cord was accused of being a Communist, leading the ‘Federal Bureau of Investigation’ to delve into the political past of Mary, which might have been the reason for Cord’s sudden loss of interest in the ‘CIA.’

In 1954, the Meyers became neighbors of the Kennedys. This was the beginning of a friendship between Jackie Kennedy and Mary.

Around this time, Cord stayed away from home, mostly in Europe, to manage his job with the ‘CIA.’ Unfortunately, one of their sons, Michael, died in an accident. Mary filed for divorce in 1958, after the tragedy hit them hard. Soon after, she began getting close to John Kennedy.

Affair with Kennedy

After her divorce, Mary moved to Georgetown and started a garage studio at her sister’s house. She became close friends with John Kennedy during this time.

According to James Angleton, a high-ranking officer of the ‘CIA,’ Mary visited the ‘White House’ in October 1961 and became intimate with Kennedy. She was introduced to the president by her ‘CIA’ friends.

Although Kennedy had been involved with a lot of women in his life, Mary was special to him. She was not just a woman he had had an affair with. According to ‘Harvard University’ lecturer of psychology Timothy Leary, Kennedy often discussed political, economical, and social issues with her. Mary asked Timothy to give her lessons on how to conduct LSD sessions with powerful men, clearly implying her attraction toward Kennedy.

A month before he was assassinated, Kennedy wrote Mary a love letter that stayed with his secretary before being sold in an auction for $89,000 in 2016.

The letter was signed ‘J.’ The last sentence of the letter read: “After all of these years – you should give me a more loving answer than that. Why don’t you just say yes”

Murder & Assumptions

On October 12, 1964, Mary went for her usual walk along the ‘Chesapeake and Ohio Canal’ towpath in Georgetown. According to a mechanic who heard Mary scream for help, she was shot twice by an African–American man.

The mechanic had reached the murder scene before anybody else and saw Mary lying on the towpath. He described the hitman as “a black man in a light jacket, dark slacks, and a dark cap.”

Ray Crump, the man accused of her murder, was found about a quarter of a mile away from the murder area. During the trial, the judge ordered that no argument should be built on Mary’s personal life.

Crump’s lawyer, Dovey Johnson Roundtree, stated that she was unable to gather any information about the victim. She later stated that the only information she could derive was that Mary was found dead on the towpath.

During the trial, Roundtree also stated that Crump’s features were quite different from those described by the witnesses. The man described by the witnesses was at least 50 pounds heavier and five inches taller than Crump.

In her autobiography, ‘Justice Older than the Law,’ Roundtree revealed that she had a witness who could have proved Crump’s innocence, but before the trial, she disappeared under mysterious circumstances.

Reports claimed that another African–American man was seen walking around the crime scene after Crump’s arrest. Interestingly, Mary was shot three weeks after she criticized the ‘CIA’s ‘Warren Commission Report.’

It was weird that the ‘CIA’ had tapped her phone around the same time and that after her death, top ‘CIA’ official James Angleton had put in a lot of effort to retrieve Mary’s personal diary. These incidents pointed at a possible ‘CIA’ involvement in her murder.

Crump was acquitted of all charges on July 29, 1965. Although the murder is considered to be one of the deadliest of all time, it remains unresolved to this day.

Personal Life & Legacy

Mary reportedly dated William Attwood in 1935. After her divorce, she got close to painter Kenneth Noland for a brief time.

She had three children with Cord: Quentin, Michael, and Mark. Michael died at the age of 9, after getting hit by a car.

Gretchen Mol portrayed Meyer in the film ‘An American Affair’ (2009). The miniseries ‘The Kennedys’ (2011) featured actor Nahanni Johnstone as Meyer.

Her story was featured in the ‘Investigation Discovery’ series ‘Hardcover Mysteries.’ Her story was also covered by the podcasts ‘True Crime Garage’ and ‘Unsolved Murders: True Crime Stories.’

// Famous Journalists

Mary Pinchot Meyer biography timelines

  • // 14th Oct 1920
    Mary Eno Pinchot Meyer was born into a wealthy family in New York City, on October 14, 1920. Her father, Amos Pinchot, was a lawyer and a member of the ‘Progressive Party.’
  • // 1935
    Mary reportedly dated William Attwood in 1935. After her divorce, she got close to painter Kenneth Noland for a brief time.
  • // 1942
    She attended ‘Brearley School’ and then went to ‘Vassar College’ to study journalism. She graduated in 1942 and started writing for the ‘United Press’ and ‘Mademoiselle.’
  • // 19th Apr 1944
    Mary attended the ‘UN Conference on International Organization’ in San Francisco with Cord Meyer. Mary and Cord got married on April 19, 1944.
  • // May 1947
    Cord Meyer was a ‘Marine Corps’ lieutenant who was elected as the president of the ‘United World Federalists’ (UWF) in May 1947. Mary wrote for the ‘UWF’ journal.
  • // 1951
    Cord joined the ‘CIA’ in 1951. However, whether he had secretly worked for them earlier is not known.
  • // 1954
    In 1954, Cord lost interest in his job with the ‘CIA’ and began looking for a job with publishers in New York. However, he failed to bag a job. Cord was accused of being a Communist, leading the ‘Federal Bureau of Investigation’ to delve into the political past of Mary, which might have been the reason for Cord’s sudden loss of interest in the ‘CIA.’
  • // 1954
    In 1954, the Meyers became neighbors of the Kennedys. This was the beginning of a friendship between Jackie Kennedy and Mary.
  • // 1958
    Around this time, Cord stayed away from home, mostly in Europe, to manage his job with the ‘CIA.’ Unfortunately, one of their sons, Michael, died in an accident. Mary filed for divorce in 1958, after the tragedy hit them hard. Soon after, she began getting close to John Kennedy.
  • // Oct 1961
    According to James Angleton, a high-ranking officer of the ‘CIA,’ Mary visited the ‘White House’ in October 1961 and became intimate with Kennedy. She was introduced to the president by her ‘CIA’ friends.
  • // 12th Oct 1964
    On October 12, 1964, Mary went for her usual walk along the ‘Chesapeake and Ohio Canal’ towpath in Georgetown. According to a mechanic who heard Mary scream for help, she was shot twice by an African–American man.
  • // 29th Jul 1965
    Crump was acquitted of all charges on July 29, 1965. Although the murder is considered to be one of the deadliest of all time, it remains unresolved to this day.
  • // 2009 To 2011
    Gretchen Mol portrayed Meyer in the film ‘An American Affair’ (2009). The miniseries ‘The Kennedys’ (2011) featured actor Nahanni Johnstone as Meyer.
  • // 2016
    A month before he was assassinated, Kennedy wrote Mary a love letter that stayed with his secretary before being sold in an auction for $89,000 in 2016.

// Famous Artists & Painters

Mary Pinchot Meyer's FAQ

  • What is Mary Pinchot Meyer birthday?

    Mary Pinchot Meyer was born at 1920-10-14

  • When was Mary Pinchot Meyer died?

    Mary Pinchot Meyer was died at 1964-10-12

  • Where was Mary Pinchot Meyer died?

    Mary Pinchot Meyer was died in Georgetown, District of Columbia

  • Which age was Mary Pinchot Meyer died?

    Mary Pinchot Meyer was died at age 43

  • Where is Mary Pinchot Meyer's birth place?

    Mary Pinchot Meyer was born in New York City, New York

  • What is Mary Pinchot Meyer nationalities?

    Mary Pinchot Meyer's nationalities is American

  • Who is Mary Pinchot Meyer spouses?

    Mary Pinchot Meyer's spouses is Cord Meyer (m. 1945–1958)

  • Who is Mary Pinchot Meyer childrens?

    Mary Pinchot Meyer's childrens is Michael Pinchot Meyer, Quentin Meyer

  • What was Mary Pinchot Meyer universities?

    Mary Pinchot Meyer studied at Brearley School, Vassar College

  • Who is Mary Pinchot Meyer's father?

    Mary Pinchot Meyer's father is Amos Pinchot

  • Who is Mary Pinchot Meyer's mother?

    Mary Pinchot Meyer's mother is Ruth Pickering Pinchot

  • What is Mary Pinchot Meyer's sun sign?

    Mary Pinchot Meyer is Libra

  • How famous is Mary Pinchot Meyer?

    Mary Pinchot Meyer is famouse as Painter & Journalist