Robert F. Kennedy’s daughter wins custody of yard planter from father’s former dwelling

One of Robert F. Kennedy’s children took custody of a decorative planter that stood outside an estate called Hickory Hill, Virginia, where the branch of the famous American political family once lived.

The Washington Post reported Friday that a federal judge had ruled binding a new owner’s 2010 pact to hand in the ballot box.

The federal court ruling means Kerry Kennedy, an attorney and activist who is the seventh child of RFK and Ethel Kennedy, will get back the four-foot-tall planter she remembers from childhood. When she sold the property, the late senator’s widow had told her children to pick an item from the property, and Kerry Kennedy took the urn.

Based on the sale of the property in 2009, Kerry Kennedy sued the new owner in federal court for breach of contract last year. She and the owner of Hickory Hill, Alan J. Dabbiere, had reached an agreement that he would give up the urn after 10 years.

Dabbiere had said he mistakenly believed Jackie Kennedy brought the urn to the property in the 1950s and changed his mind about giving up the property after learning that she had been there long before the Kennedys arrived. He then claimed it was an establishment of the property.

But the federal judge ruled in Kerry Kennedy’s favor, ending the dispute. Kennedy, who was once married to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, now plans to move the urn to the family’s estate in Hyannis Port, Massachusetts.

Hickory Hill is a designated National Historic Landmark. It was built on approximately 2 hectares of land in 1870.

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