Rosemary Kennedy's dad ordered her lobotomy to prevent pregnancy, new books claim

Rosemary Kennedy Had Lobotomy to Prevent Pregnancy, Book Claims


Two new books shine a spotlight on the Kennedy family's darkest secret: Rosemary Kennedy.

"Rosemary: The Hidden Kennedy Daughter" and "The Missing Kennedy" give further insights into the oldest daughter in America's most storied family.

Read: Rosemary Kennedy's Forgotten Diaries

But her winning Kennedy smile hid a tragic fact - Rosemary's delivery at birth was botched by a nurse that resulted in brain damage.

See vintage photos of Rosemary Kennedy and her famous family:

Rosemary Kennedy
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Rosemary Kennedy's dad ordered her lobotomy to prevent pregnancy, new books claim
11th May 1938: Rose Kennedy (centre), wife of multi-millionaire and US ambassador to Britain Joseph Kennedy, and two of her daughters, Kathleen Kennedy (Marchioness of Hartington) and Rosemary Kennedy (right), leaving to be presented at Court. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - DECEMBER 01: Washington, December 1937. On the left: Joseph Patrick KENNEDY, his daughters Jean (age 9), Eunice (age 16) and Patricia (age 13). Behind them is John Fitzgerald KENNEDY (future president of the United States). On the right: Rose Fitzgerald KENNEDY with her sons and daughters, Joseph KENNEDY JR. (age 22), Rosemary (age 19), Robert (age 12) leaning on the chimney, Kathleen (age 17) and Edward (age 6). (Photo by Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone via Getty Images)
UNITED KINGDOM - JANUARY 01: Rosemary And Eunice Kennedy With Edward Moore On Arrival At Plymouth In 1938 (Photo by Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone via Getty Images)
Rosemary, John, Eunice, Joseph Jr, and Kathleen Kennedy, Hyannisport, Massachusetts, Summer 1925. (Photo by PhotoQuest/Getty Images)
Seated at right, American socialite and philanthrophist Rose Kennedy (1890 - 1995) poses with her children, from left, Joseph P Kennedy Jr (1915 - 1944), John F Kennedy (1917 - 1963), Kathleen Kennedy (1920 - 1948), Rosemary Kennedy (1918 - 2005), and Eunice Kennedy, Brookline, Massachussetts, 1921. (Photo by Bachrach/Getty Images)
Arriving from Europe by clipper, Rosemary Kennedy (left), daughter of Joseph Kennedy, Ambassador to England, is greeted by sister Jean.
(Original Caption) Photo shows, left to right: The Missies, Eunice and Rosemary Kennedy, as they sailed yesterday on board the S.S. Manhattan of the United States Lines, bound for England, to join their family at the Ambassador's residence at Prince's Gate. Rosemary, has been a student at Marymount Convent, in Tarrytown, N.Y., while her sister Eunice, studied at the Sacred Convent in Noroton, Connecticut. (Photo by George Rinhart/Corbis via Getty Images)
(Original Caption) American Embassy 'at home'...Mr. Joseph Kennedy, the American Ambassador, and Mrs. Kennedy, entertained nearly 1,500 Americans at an Embassy party at the American Embassy in Prince's Gate, London, S.W., to celebrate Independence Day. Photo shows: Miss Rosemary Kennedy, left, chatting to friends at the garden party today. (Photo by George Rinhart/Corbis via Getty Images)
Rose Kennedy sits with three of her young children: Joseph, Jr., Rosemary, and Jack.

People magazine features both books in this week's cover story on newsstands this Friday.

East coast editor, Liz McNeil of People told INSIDE EDITION: "When Rosemary was born, the nurse actually delayed her birth, waiting for the physician to arrive. Rosemary was deprived of oxygen which may have led to some of her disabilities later on in life."

Rosemary's erratic behavior worried her father Joe Kennedy Sr. who believed the stigma of mental illness in the family would ruin his plans to build a political dynasty,

"She had tantrums from time to time. Which some people think might have been her frustrations in not being able to keep up with her siblings. As she grew older, into her teen years, she stared to have more tantrums and that time she was hard to manage," McNeil said.

In her private diaries, written in her child-like hand, she writes about a date with a boy: "He gave me violets to pin on my coat. We went to the plaza. I had a grand time with him."

Her father worried that Rosemary might get pregnant and disgrace the family. So he had her secretly lobotomized. The surgery backfired and left her severely disabled.

From then on, Rosemary was hidden from public view and cared for by nuns at a private Catholic nursing home.

Read: Home Movie of JFK Assassination Remains Important Historical Artifact

Elizabeth Koehler-Pentacoff is author of The Missing Kennedy and she is actually the niece of the nun who looked after Rosemary.

"She never was allowed out publically," she told INSIDE EDITION.

She says family matriarch, Rose Kennedy, finally visited her daughter after 20 years but it was no happy reunion.

Koehler-Pentacoff said: "Her mother opened her arms wide for a hug when Rosie just experienced her frustration and started beating her chest as if to say: 'Where were you all of these years?'"

After Joe senior's death in 1969, Eunice Kennedy-Shriver brought her sister back into the family fold.

Eunice, the mother of Maria Shriver, founded the Special Olympics which she dedicated to Rosemary.

Also see photos of John F. Kennedy:

John F Kennedy (life)
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Rosemary Kennedy's dad ordered her lobotomy to prevent pregnancy, new books claim
1927: Headshot portrait of John F Kennedy (1917-1963) at age ten, standing outdoors and wearing a suit with his hair slicked back. (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
Future President of the United States of America, John F Kennedy (1917 - 1963) in London. (Photo by Evening Standard/Getty Images)
American statesman John F Kennedy, later the 35th President of the United States (right), with Mr Borhum at a garden party at the White House, Washington DC. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)
1st September 1939: Joe, Kathleen and John F Kennedy, the children of American Ambassador to Great Britain, Joseph P Kennedy, arriving at the Houses of Parliament in London. John later became the 35th President of the United States. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)
A photo dated 1950's shows John F. Kennedy with his wife Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy. (Photo credit should read AFP/AFP/Getty Images)
John Fitzgerald Kennedy (1917 - 1963), the American president sitting in a rocking chair. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)
Senator John F Kennedy seeking the Democratic nomination for the presidential elections, which he went on to win. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)
President John F. Kennedy speaks on the telephone August 23, 1962 in the Oval Office. (Photo by National Archive/Newsmakers)
Senator John F Kennedy (1917 - 1963) is given a rousing ovation during his presidential campaign. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)
John F Kennedy (1917 - 1963), American president-elect, with his wife Jacqueline (1929 - 1994) at the christening of their son John F Jr. (1960 - 1999) in Washington. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)
U.S. President John F. Kennedy (1917 - 1963) holds his first press conference, Washington D.C., 28th January 1961. (Photo by Central Press/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
17th February 1961: Jacqueline Kennedy (1929 - 1994), wife of US President John F Kennedy, and daughter Caroline relax together at home. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)
1962: US statesman John F Kennedy, 35th president of the USA, making a speech. (Photo by Central Press/Getty Images)
US President John F Kennedy (1917 - 1963, left) with British Prime Minister Harold Macmillan (1894 - 1986) outside Government House in Hamilton, Bermuda, where they are holding talks, 22nd December 1961. (Photo by AFP/Getty Images)
President John F. Kennedy greets wellwishers after a speech May 8, 1963 at the White House. (Photo by National Archive/Newsmakers)
9th November 1960: Senator John F Kennedy, the Democratic candidate who has been elected president of the USA. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)

Watch Below: Author Pens the Untold Story of Jackie Kennedy and JFK Jr.
Author Pens Untold Story of Jackie Kennedy and JFK Jr.
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