Jackie Kennedy’s nude photos found their way into Hustler magazine in the mid-1970s. It was a humiliating moment for the poised first lady who was notoriously private and did not see herself as a celebrity following John F. Kennedy’s assassination.
Little did she know that someone extremely close to her was behind the gross invasion of her privacy.
Jackie Kennedy’s nude photos were published in ‘Hustler’ magazine
In 1975, the same year that her second husband, Aristotle Onassis died, Hustler magazine founder, Larry Flynt published nude photos of the former first lady in his August 1975 edition of the magazine.
Flynt had purchased the photos that were taken of Kennedy sunbathing in 1971 for $18,000. He was offered the images from an unnamed paparazzo without Kennedy’s consent. The photos took off like wildfire, and over one million copies of the magazine were sold in just a few days, making Flynt a millionaire.
For her part, Kennedy, a widow, yet again and a mother to two young children was horrified. She had no idea that the photos had been taken. Photographers had snuck on to a beach on Skorpios, an island in Greece, where she was living and snapped photos of her. Though she tried to stop the publication of the photos, the damage was done, and her reputation suffered.
Jackie Kennedy’s second husband Aristotle Onassis arranged for the nude photos to be taken
Unbeknownst to Kenndy, her late second husband had arranged for the photos to be taken of her without her consent. According to biographer Steven M Gillon’s book America’s Reluctant Prince: The Life of John F. Kennedy Jr. Onassis “arranged for photographers to take photos of [Jackie] sunbathing nude on Skorpios — photos that made their way into Larry Flynt’s pornographic magazine Hustler.”
By the 1970s, the couple’s relationship, which was pretty much a business deal. In the couple’s prenup, the Greek tycoon specified that he would provide for his wife and her small children but, that couple would sleep separately and Kennedy would have no children with him.
However, Onassis soon began to resent how much money Kennedy was spending, so he orchestrated the photos in an act of revenge.
Jackie Kennedy and Aristotle Onassis fought bitterly about money
Per their agreement, Kennedy was allowed a large monthly allowance when she married Onassis. In his book, Gillon reveals that Kennedy was given a $10,000 stipend, plus another $10,000 for clothing. She was also given an additional $5,000 to spend on her two children, John and Caroline.
However, Kennedy regularly went over her allowance and often asked for more money, causing Onassis to leak stories about her spending habits to the press and later the nude photos. The former first lady reportedly had no idea her husband was behind the photos.
The pair were in the middle of a messy divorce when Onassis died. His will only allotted her $200,000 a year, which she contested. Eventually, his daughter granted her a $26 million lump sum.