November 22, 2018

The 55th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963

November 22, 2018 marks the 55th anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s assassination in 1963.  He was the fourth president martyred. (Abraham Lincoln, James A. Garfield, and William McKinley were the three previous presidents killed by assassins.)

President Kennedy planned a two-day, five-city tour of Texas in advance of the presidential election in 1964. Jackie was with him. It was The First Lady's first extended public appearance since the death of their son in August.

Kennedy stopped in San Antonio and Fort Worth before arriving in Dallas. As the motorcade drove through downtown Dallas, at 12:30 pm shots were fired that struck the president and Texas Governor John Connally, who was seated in front of the president in an open limousine.  

The president was taken to Parkland Memorial Hospital where he was pronounced dead at 1 pm.  

At 2:38 pm, Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson took the oath of office aboard Air Force One, becoming the 36th President of the United States. Jackie, her suite stained with her husband's blood, stood nearby.

Choosing the location for burial

The Arlington National Cemetery site puts the selection of the cemetery for his grave in historical context:

There are only two U.S. presidents buried at Arlington National Cemetery. The other is William Howard Taft, who died in 1930.

Though Kennedy is buried at Arlington, at the time of his death, many believed that he would be buried in Brookline, Mass. Woodrow Wilson was the only other president besides Taft who had been buried outside of his native state and in the National Capital Region. President Wilson is buried at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C.

First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy, in consultation with Robert F. Kennedy and Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara, approved burial of the president at Arlington National Cemetery with the gravesite below Arlington House.

On Nov. 25, 1963, at 3 p.m., the state funeral of President Kennedy began.

Among the mourners at Kennedy's grave site were President Charles de Gaulle of France, Chancellor Ludwig Erhard of the Federal Republic of Germany, Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia and Prince Philip of the United Kingdom. Overhead, 50 Navy and Air Force jets flew past the gravesite followed by the president's plane, Air Force One, which dipped its wing in final tribute.

The initial plot was 20 feet by 30 feet and was surrounded by a white picket fence. During the first year often more than 3,000 people an hour visited the Kennedy gravesite, and on weekends an estimated 50,000 people visited. Three years after Kennedy's death, more than 16 million people had come to visit the Kennedy plot.

Because of the large crowds, cemetery officials and members of the Kennedy family decided that a more suitable site should be constructed. Construction began in 1965 and was completed July 20, 1967. Lighted by Mrs. Kennedy during the funeral, the Eternal Flame burns from the center of a five-foot circular flat-granite stone at the head of the grave.

Recollections from newsmen there that day

At the time, legendary newsmen Bob Schieffer was working for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram and Jim Lehrer was working for the Dallas Times-Herald. In this video, Lehrer describes the "bubble top" that sometimes covered the limousine and Schieffer recalls getting a call from Oswald's mother, who asked for a ride to the police station.

While the official report on the assisnation is known as the Warren Commission Report (full text), more than 40,000 books have been written on the assassination. The Guardian reviewed some of them last year.

Museum and historic sites

 

— Larisa Moran, Regional Editor, The History List


For more major history events, see our History Lists section of the site.

 

 

Posted By on


November 22, 2018

The 55th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963

November 22, 2018 marks the 55th anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s assassination in 1963.  He was the fourth president martyred. (Abraham Lincoln, James A. Garfield, and William McKinley were the three previous presidents killed by assassins.)

President Kennedy planned a two-day, five-city tour of Texas in advance of the presidential election in 1964. Jackie was with him. It was The First Lady's first extended public appearance since the death of their son in August.

Kennedy stopped in San Antonio and Fort Worth before arriving in Dallas. As the motorcade drove through downtown Dallas, at 12:30 pm shots were fired that struck the president and Texas Governor John Connally, who was seated in front of the president in an open limousine.  

The president was taken to Parkland Memorial Hospital where he was pronounced dead at 1 pm.  

At 2:38 pm, Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson took the oath of office aboard Air Force One, becoming the 36th President of the United States. Jackie, her suite stained with her husband's blood, stood nearby.

Choosing the location for burial

The Arlington National Cemetery site puts the selection of the cemetery for his grave in historical context:

There are only two U.S. presidents buried at Arlington National Cemetery. The other is William Howard Taft, who died in 1930.

Though Kennedy is buried at Arlington, at the time of his death, many believed that he would be buried in Brookline, Mass. Woodrow Wilson was the only other president besides Taft who had been buried outside of his native state and in the National Capital Region. President Wilson is buried at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C.

First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy, in consultation with Robert F. Kennedy and Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara, approved burial of the president at Arlington National Cemetery with the gravesite below Arlington House.

On Nov. 25, 1963, at 3 p.m., the state funeral of President Kennedy began.

Among the mourners at Kennedy's grave site were President Charles de Gaulle of France, Chancellor Ludwig Erhard of the Federal Republic of Germany, Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia and Prince Philip of the United Kingdom. Overhead, 50 Navy and Air Force jets flew past the gravesite followed by the president's plane, Air Force One, which dipped its wing in final tribute.

The initial plot was 20 feet by 30 feet and was surrounded by a white picket fence. During the first year often more than 3,000 people an hour visited the Kennedy gravesite, and on weekends an estimated 50,000 people visited. Three years after Kennedy's death, more than 16 million people had come to visit the Kennedy plot.

Because of the large crowds, cemetery officials and members of the Kennedy family decided that a more suitable site should be constructed. Construction began in 1965 and was completed July 20, 1967. Lighted by Mrs. Kennedy during the funeral, the Eternal Flame burns from the center of a five-foot circular flat-granite stone at the head of the grave.

Recollections from newsmen there that day

At the time, legendary newsmen Bob Schieffer was working for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram and Jim Lehrer was working for the Dallas Times-Herald. In this video, Lehrer describes the "bubble top" that sometimes covered the limousine and Schieffer recalls getting a call from Oswald's mother, who asked for a ride to the police station.

While the official report on the assisnation is known as the Warren Commission Report (full text), more than 40,000 books have been written on the assassination. The Guardian reviewed some of them last year.

Museum and historic sites

 

— Larisa Moran, Regional Editor, The History List

 


For more major history events, see our History Lists section of the site.

Posted By on


November 22, 2018

The 55th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963

November 22, 2018 marks the 55th anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s assassination in 1963.  He was the fourth president martyred. (Abraham Lincoln, James A. Garfield, and William McKinley were the three previous presidents killed by assassins.)

President Kennedy planned a two-day, five-city tour of Texas in advance of the presidential election in 1964. Jackie was with him. It was The First Lady's first extended public appearance since the death of their son in August.

Kennedy stopped in San Antonio and Fort Worth before arriving in Dallas. As the motorcade drove through downtown Dallas, at 12:30 pm shots were fired that struck the president and Texas Governor John Connally, who was seated in front of the president in an open limousine.  

The president was taken to Parkland Memorial Hospital where he was pronounced dead at 1 pm.  

At 2:38 pm, Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson took the oath of office aboard Air Force One, becoming the 36th President of the United States. Jackie, her suite stained with her husband's blood, stood nearby.

Choosing the location for burial

The Arlington National Cemetery site puts the selection of the cemetery for his grave in historical context:

There are only two U.S. presidents buried at Arlington National Cemetery. The other is William Howard Taft, who died in 1930.

Though Kennedy is buried at Arlington, at the time of his death, many believed that he would be buried in Brookline, Mass. Woodrow Wilson was the only other president besides Taft who had been buried outside of his native state and in the National Capital Region. President Wilson is buried at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C.

First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy, in consultation with Robert F. Kennedy and Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara, approved burial of the president at Arlington National Cemetery with the gravesite below Arlington House.

On Nov. 25, 1963, at 3 p.m., the state funeral of President Kennedy began.

Among the mourners at Kennedy's grave site were President Charles de Gaulle of France, Chancellor Ludwig Erhard of the Federal Republic of Germany, Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia and Prince Philip of the United Kingdom. Overhead, 50 Navy and Air Force jets flew past the gravesite followed by the president's plane, Air Force One, which dipped its wing in final tribute.

The initial plot was 20 feet by 30 feet and was surrounded by a white picket fence. During the first year often more than 3,000 people an hour visited the Kennedy gravesite, and on weekends an estimated 50,000 people visited. Three years after Kennedy's death, more than 16 million people had come to visit the Kennedy plot.

Because of the large crowds, cemetery officials and members of the Kennedy family decided that a more suitable site should be constructed. Construction began in 1965 and was completed July 20, 1967. Lighted by Mrs. Kennedy during the funeral, the Eternal Flame burns from the center of a five-foot circular flat-granite stone at the head of the grave.

Recollections from newsmen there that day

At the time, legendary newsmen Bob Schieffer was working for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram and Jim Lehrer was working for the Dallas Times-Herald. In this video, Lehrer describes the "bubble top" that sometimes covered the limousine and Schieffer recalls getting a call from Oswald's mother, who asked for a ride to the police station.

While the official report on the assisnation is known as the Warren Commission Report (full text), more than 40,000 books have been written on the assassination. The Guardian reviewed some of them last year.

Museum and historic sites

 

— Larisa Moran, Regional Editor, The History List


For more major history events, see our History Lists section of the site.

 

 

Posted By on


November 20, 2018

155th anniversary of the Gettysburg Address on November 19, 2018

The battle of Gettysburg, which took place from July 1 - 3, 1863, remains the most costly battles in US history of any war, with casualties for both armies estimated at 46,000 to 51,000 soldiers.

That fall, at the dedication of the National Cemetery of Gettysburg on November 19,1863, the featured speaker was famed orator Edward Everett.  Everett, former governor of Massachusetts, congressman, president of Harvard, minister to the Court of St. James, secretary of state and senator, and Unitarian minister, spoke without notes for about two hours.

Benjamin French later wrote, “Mr. Everett was listened to with breathless silence by all that immense crowd, and he had his audience in tears many times during his masterly effort.”

Here's one passage from early in his speech:

As my eye ranges over the fields whose sods were so lately moistened by the blood of gallant and loyal men, I feel, as never before, how truly it was said of old, that it is sweet and becoming to die for ones country. I feel as never before, how justly, from the dawn of history to the present time, men have paid the homage of their gratitude and admiration to the memory of those who nobly sacrificed their lives, that their fellow men may live in safety and in honor. And if this tribute were ever due, when, to whom, could it be more justly paid than to those whose last resting place we this day commend to the blessing of Heaven and of men?

For consider, my friends, what would have been the consequences to the country, to yourselves, and to all you hold dear, if those who sleep beneath our feet, and their gallant comrades who survive to serve their country on other fields of danger, had failed in their duty on those memorable days. Consider what, at this moment, would be the condition of the United States, if that noble Army of the Potomac, instead of gallantly and for the second time beating back the tide of invasion from Maryland and Pennsylvania, had been itself driven from these well contested heights, thrown back in confusion on Baltimore, or trampled down, discomfited, scattered to the four winds. What, in that sad event, would have been the fate of the Monumental city, of Harrisburg, of Philadelphia, of Washington, the capital of the Union, each and every one of which would have lain at the mercy of the enemy, accordingly as it might have pleased him, spurred by passion, flushed with victory, and confident of continued success, to direct his course?

Lincoln spoke next. It took him about two minutes to deliver his 272 words:

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.

But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate—we can not consecrate—we can not hallow—this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—oand that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

Everett, who had submitted his speech to Lincoln in advance, wrote him the next day: "I should be glad, if I could flatter myself, that I came as near to the central idea of the occasion, in two hours, as you did in two minutes.” (Additional information on Everett, including his role in raising money to save Mt. Vernon.)

The Gettysburg Address is regarded as one of the greatest presidential speeches in American history.  The Library of Congress has assembled several documents and photographs into this online exhibit.

Events in or near Gettysburg, Pennsylvania

Museum and historic sites in or near Gettysburg, Pennsylvania

Related products from The History List Store


For more major history events, see our History Lists section of the site.

 

 

 

Posted By on


November 11, 2018

Notable anniversaries in US history in December 2018

195th anniversary of the Monroe Doctrine forbidding European interference in the Americas on December 2, 1823

235th anniversary of George Washington's farewell address to his officers on December 4, 1783

85th anniversary of Prohibition ending on December 5, 1933

170th anniversary of the start of the Gold Rush when President James K. Polk confirmed in his State of the Union address that large quantities of gold had been discovered in California on December 5, 1848

240th anniversary of John Jay being elected President of the Continental Congress on December 10, 1778

120th anniversary of the Treaty of Paris ending the Spanish-American War on December 10, 1898

100th anniversary of  President Woodrow Wilson making the first U.S. Presidential trip to Europe on December 13, 1918

245th anniversary of the Boston Tea Party on December 16, 1773

↣ Read more and get suggestions of events and places to visit.

115th anniversary of the Wright brothers flight on December 17, 1903

↣ Read more and get suggestions of events and places to visit.

235th anniversary of George Washington resigning as Commander in Chief  on December 23, 1783

240th anniversary of the British capturing Savannah, Georgia in the Revolutionary War on December 29, 1778

→ Notable anniversaries for this and future months are listed in our History Lists section of the site.

 

 

 

Posted By on