May 20 - 1963: President Kennedy creates a Summer White House here

2007: Babesiosis is spreading, and hard to diagnose
"Senator Kennedy Goes-A-Courting" cover from the July 20, 1953 issue of Life magazine.

1963: Jack and Jackie to spend summers in Hyannisport

The start of a massive tourism boost for Cape Cod

On this day in 1963, the New York Times heralded the news: A Second White House--For the Summer?

The story went on; a recent proposal for an official Presidential vacation spot raises the question of how presidents can escape the misery of Washington's sweltering summers. A Summer White House?

"The one essential," Franklin Roosevelt wrote to his wife in the anxious days after Pearl Harbor, "is complete lack of any distraction on the very occasional weekend I can get away from Washington"...  See a photocopy of the complete story below.

Second summer on Cape as President

The summer before, the Kennedys had stayed at a Squaw Island house owned by singer Morton Downey, father of future television talk show host Morton Downey Jr.

Squaw Island, a geographical misnomer, is a half-mile west of the Kennedy compound in Hyannisport where JFK owned a house next to his brother and sister-in-law, Robert and Ethel Kennedy, whose summer home was situated next to that of Kennedy elders Joseph and Rose Kennedy. Ted and Joan Kennedy also owned a house on Squaw Island.

JFK's house in the compound "is not large enough for a combination house and office," the AP reported, though the Secret Service was said to prefer isolated Squaw Island to the compound for security reasons.  The photo above shows Jack and Jackie on the President's Wianno Senior off Hyannisport.

05-20-08-summer_white_house_600

2007: Babesiosis is spreading, and hard to diagnose

Carried by same insects that spread Lyme disease

On this day in 2007 the Newburyport News reported Rick DiMichele, a physically fit 55-year-old, came down with a mysterious disease last summer. He had a fever of 103 degrees, he looked pale and puffy, and he had a terrible pain in his side. It turned out to be a rare infection called babesiosis, which is similar to malaria. While malaria is common in tropical climates, DiMichele believes he caught this disease in his own Ipswich backyard.

Babesiosis is spread by deer ticks, the same insects that spread Lyme disease. DiMichele, who works at New Balance in Lawrence, lives on a wooded road about two miles from the center of Ipswich, where deer eat people’s shrubs and Lyme disease is a major concern.

Many doctors still think of babesiosis as a problem limited to Nantucket, Martha’s Vineyard and Cape Cod, where it has been circulating for nearly a generation, Matyas said.

(Above photo is courtesy of the CDC: A deer tick is magnified several time on the rim of a penny.)


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