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The connection behind the collection: Frank Harvey's relationship with JFK's personal photographer

Sept. 18, 2013
Clay DeStefano
Frank Harvey’s relationship with JFK’s personal photographer
As a teenager who worked on the Kennedy campaign in 1960, Houston resident Frank Harvey became a lover of all things related to JFK. In the 1990s, he began what is now a very serious collection of JFK artifacts and memorabilia that naturally led him to reach out to Jacques Lowe, JFK’s personal photographer. 
“By 1995, we had become close friends, and I began advising him in the content of his rare portfolio collections,” Harvey said. “Jacques traveled to see me in Houston and met members of my family and company as we continued to make selections for his books.”
Lowe’s portraiture was instrumental in establishing the Kennedy family’s Camelot image that is cherished as a nostalgic American era. His images of the Kennedy family first emerged during JFK’s campaign for Senator and continued through his early years as the United States’ 35th President.
Negatives to Lowe’s photographs were stored in a bank vault at the World Trade Center and destroyed in the tragic events on Sept. 11, 2001. Today, Harvey holds the most extensive collection of Kennedy artifacts, including several of Lowe’s rare prints.
“Over the years the relationship [with Frank Harvey] grew into a friendship – a trusting relationship,” Lowe said in an interview prior to his 2001 death. “Today, Frank has the most important collection of my work. Not just photographs but books, posters and other things I’ve done. This is the most important collection of my work.”
Harvey will soon bring a portion of his collection to San Marcos. Remembering Camelot through the Lens of Jacques Lowe - the Private Collection of Frank Harvey is a once-in-a-lifetime display, and proceeds from two of the events will benefit True Vineyard Ministries, a non-profit organization that empowers Rwandan widows that were left behind in the 100-day genocide of the 1990s. Harvey’s cousin, Diana Wiley, founded the ministry after hearing a heart-felt testimony at her church that moved her to take action.
The following opportunities will provide a chance to catch a glimpse into this important part of American history:
Oct. 1 – Nov. 9 - FREE
Texas State University’s Alkek Library
·         Preview showing of a limited portion of the collection on display
Saturday, Nov. 16 - $200
Embassy Suites Hotel, Spa & Conference Center in San Marcos
·         Full exhibit, featuring approximately 80 images, as well as more than 30 unique artifacts from the private collection of Harvey (including the lead car from JFK’s inaugural parade)
·         Many never-before-seen images
·         Kennedy-era inspired hors d’oeuvres and specialty cocktails
·         Keynote speakers
·         Unique silent auction, including a trip to Rwanda personally guided by Diana Wiley
Sunday, Nov. 17 - $25
Embassy Suites Hotel, Spa & Conference Center in San Marcos
·         A public viewing of the photography portion from the collection
For more information about Remembering Camelot through the lens of Jacques Lowe - the Private Collection of Frank Harvey, visit
About True Vineyard Ministries
True Vineyard Ministries is a non-profit organization based in San Marcos, Texas that uses social business models that provide work-based solutions to poverty-stricken communities in Rwanda. They achieve this goal by reaching out to widows who were left behind in the tragic 100-day genocide in 1994, where nearly one million Rwandans were murdered. Some of the women are rape survivors, suffering from HIV/AIDS and all are mothers to multiple children. True Vineyard Ministries also provides counseling to help women heal from their traumatic experiences.

San Marcos resident Diana Wiley developed a long-term mission program with a rural hospital in Mozambique, after she was touched by a testimony from the hospital’s administrator who shared a glimpse of the HIV/AIDS epidemic with Wiley’s church.
In 2005, after volunteering with the hospital for 3 years, Wiley began to learn more about the role the 1994 Genocide had played in the AIDS epidemic in Rwanda. In 2007, Wiley launched the female-based, Christ-centered ministry known as True Vineyard Ministries. One of the ways the ministry helps to suppress Rwandans’ hunger and lack of means for basic necessities is through its Handspun Hope Program, which provides resources to help women produce organically dyed yarn from the merino sheep they raise. True Vineyard also sells popular jewelry, textile accessories and other hand-made items in The Vineyard Marketplace, a fair trade African boutique that is located at 317 W. San Antonio Street in San Marcos.