The Miami Herald
Tue, Apr. 23, 2002

U.S. sues to stop sale of JFK's Cuban missile crisis map

  From Herald staff and wire reports

  NEW YORK - The federal government sued Monday to stop a website operator from selling a Cuban missile crisis map
  used by President John F. Kennedy and civil rights documents that may have been improperly removed by Kennedy's
  personal secretary.

  U.S. District Court Judge Robert Ward temporarily blocked the sale until a hearing scheduled for next week.

  Gary Zimet, operator of the site, has advertised being the exclusive seller of a map and its original envelope identified
  as: ``Cuban Missile Crisis Map With JFK's Handwritten Annotations Indicating Locations of Russian Missile Sites October
  16, 1962.''

  ''What happened is that the government wants to steal this map from me,'' said an agitated Zimet, who spoke to The
  Herald on Monday night by telephone from New York.

  He said he had been besieged by calls from national news organizations on Monday after the lawsuit was filed.

  Publicity about the map, first detailed in The Herald in February, also had Zimet's phone ringing a couple of months ago.

  In its arguments, the government said Evelyn Lincoln -- the personal secretary who worked for the White House on
  Kennedy's papers until July 1964 -- also compiled annotated and handwritten notes for the President Kennedy Library
  Corp. until at least 1972.

  The map and civil rights documents were donated to the United States in February 1965 for deposit in the John F.
  Kennedy Presidential Library, the government said.

  ''It appears that Evelyn Lincoln improperly removed the map from the custody and control of the United States'' and
  later gave, sold or bequeathed it to Robert L. White, a private collector of Kennedy memorabilia, the lawsuit states. It
  did not suggest that Lincoln, who died in 1995, had done anything criminally wrong.

  ''Whatever path the map may have traveled, it nevertheless falls squarely within the deed of gift and rightfully belongs
  to the United States,'' the government wrote.