Camp David Letter

The Case:

Maryland’s Camp David has served as a Presidential retreat for more than 60 years and is possibly best known for the Camp David Accords, the famous Egyptian-Israeli peace agreement signed there in 1978.

A self-styled dumpster diver in San Francisco has recovered a windfall of memorabilia that reveals a story of Camp David’s beginnings. The salvaged items appear to have once belonged to a three-generation Navy family headed by John H. Kevers.

Among photos, dog tags and epaulets, one letter in particular caught our contributor’s attention: It’s from Ronald Reagan to Kevers’ widow, stating “…Captain John H. Kevers gave many years of service to Presidents, starting with Franklin D. Roosevelt... Because of Captain Kevers, we have the enjoyable facility of Camp David...”

History Detectives searches Presidential archives and Naval history to pinpoint Kevers’ connection to the secret mountaintop hideaway that was FDR’s "Shangri-La."

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Season 6, Episode 3

Wes Cowan Location:
Los Angeles and San Francisco

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