From Steamshovel Press #6:
An Interview With Deborah Davis
author of Katharine The Great, Katharine Graham
and Her Washington Post Empire
Q: Tim Leary suggested that your book was originally censored and
pulped because of references to Mary Pinchot Meyer. Do you feel
that way and can you tell us a little bit about Mary Meyer?
A: Mary Pinchot Meyer was the sister of Ben Bradlee's second
wife, Tony Pinchot. She was a very beautiful, talented artist who
was living in Washington in the early `65 and she was the lover,
I would say the principal lover, of John Kennedy, who was
President of the United States. He was supposedly very much in
love with her and wanted to divorce Jackie and marry her.
The Timothy Leary connection is interesting because at that
time in the early sixties there was a group of society-type women
in Washington who thought that if they could get men in power
involved in mind-altering drugs they could see the world in a
different way and this would end the Cold War and end all
warfare. It was a very ambitious plan and a lot of them got their
marijuana and LSD from Timothy Leary, who at that time was a
professor of psychology at Harvard and had access to these drugs.
At that time were very experimental and they were going around in
a lot of the elite circles. It didn't have the same connotation
that it has today of the hard stuff, of the cocaine and the
heroin. This was all very beautiful and mind-expanding type
stuff. So she was involved with Kennedy and they used to
supposedly smoke marijuana together in Kennedy's bedroom and I
think Leary said that she also gave him LSD, although I couldn't
swear to that.
Anyway, she got murdered. She was murdered a year after
Kennedy died. Kennedy was killed in November `63 and Mary Meyer
was killed in 1964. She was walking her dog in Georgetown through
a wooded area and she was stabbed to death. And they never found
the killer. Some young black man was put in jail for ten months,
held over until his trial and then he was acquitted because there
was no evidence. And they've never found the killer but people
who have investigated the case say that it had all the earmarks
of a professional assassination.
Q: She was, of course, married to Cord Meyer, who was an
A: She had been. She was divorced from him at the time she was
with Kennedy. She had been with Cord Meyer in Europe when they
were living. He was involved in a lot of counter-espionage over
in Europe and she was supposedly a security risk because she
tended to fall in love and have affairs with handsome men. She
had an affair with one Italian count who was supposedly an
intelligence agent and this constituted a security risk. And I
suppose that their divorce was partly caused by the gulf between
them because he really just couldn't talk about his work. Anyway,
she was a very talented painter and very charming and beautiful
and Kennedy was in love with her.
Q: Let's talk a bit about what exactly happened to your book. The
first edition came out in the late `70s, right?
A: 1979. November `79.
What happened was all part of one great big, giant society
that these people in Washington have created for themselves where
the most important thing to them is putting forward this myth
about themselves that they are supremely moral, supremely
powerful, all-knowing, all-caring. They'll take care of the rest
of us and anything that they do that is questionable they try to
cover it up. You might ask why they're so afraid of having these...
To read the rest of this article and the others listed on the
contents page of Steamshovel Press #6, order the back issue. $5
post paid from Steamshovel Press, POB 23715, St. Louis, MO 63121
Steamshovel Press Home Page