On Friday, Nov. 22, the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, the Newseum
will host JFK Remembrance Day, featuring a number of special events and exclusive programs. The news museum, a top attraction in Washington, D.C., will host a daylong series of JFK-themed discussions with authors, journalists and filmmakers. The museum also will rebroadcast in real time three hours of CBS News's live television coverage from Nov. 22, 1963, including the unforgettable moment when legendary anchorman Walter Cronkite reported to the nation that the president was dead.
JFK Remembrance Day at the Newseum will feature an interview with historian James Swanson, author of the new book "End of Days: The Assassination of John F. Kennedy"; a screening of "JFK: One PM Central Standard Time," a new documentary on the assassination narrated by George Clooney; a discussion with Dean Owen, author of the book "November 22, 1963: Reflections on the Life, Assassination, and Legacy of John F. Kennedy"; and a screening of "President Kennedy Has Been Shot" followed by a discussion with filmmaker Gerardine Wurzburg.
On Wednesday, Nov. 20, the museum will host the special evening program "Eyewitness to History: The JFK Assassination 50 Years Later," featuring Secret Service agent Clint Hill and CBS News correspondent Bob Schieffer, CBS News's chief Washington correspondent and anchor of "Face the Nation."
As the agent assigned to protect Jacqueline Kennedy during the president's trip to Dallas, Hill was in the presidential motorcade and leapt onto the back of the presidential limousine moments after the shots were fired. In 1963, Schieffer was a reporter for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, and on the day of the assassination he drove the mother of accused assassin Lee Harvey Oswald to the Dallas police station after she called the newspaper asking for help. The program takes place at 7 p.m. on Nov. 20, and tickets will go on sale to the general public Oct. 7 for $30. Newseum Press Pass members can purchase their tickets beginning Oct. 1 for $20.
These events, plus additional Inside Media programs leading up to the anniversary, add to the museum's popular JFK exhibits, which opened in April as part of a year-long exploration of President John F. Kennedy. Two exhibits and an original documentary chronicle the presidency, family life and death of America's 35th president through rarely seen artifacts, photos and video, and recount how journalists covered one of the darkest days in American history.
The exhibits include "Creating Camelot: The Kennedy Photography of Jacques Lowe," featuring intimate, behind-the-scenes images of Kennedy, his wife, Jacqueline, and their children, Caroline and John. Lowe was 28 when he met the Kennedys in 1958 and was hired as the family's personal photographer. Over the next three years, he shot more than 40,000 images of the couple and their children. Lowe's photos span from Kennedy's 1958 U.S. Senate re-election campaign through his early years in the White House. The iconic images helped create the mythology about the Kennedy years that later became known as Camelot.
"Three Shots Were Fired" examines the events that began with Kennedy's assassination in Dallas on Nov. 22, 1963. It features never before publicly displayed artifacts on loan from the National Archives and Records Administration, including the long-sleeve shirt Lee Harvey Oswald was wearing when he was arrested, the wallet Oswald was carrying at the time of his arrest and its contents, a jacket investigators believe Oswald discarded as he was fleeing police, and the blanket Oswald used to hide his rifle in the garage of a family friend near Dallas. The exhibit also features the Bell & Howell 8 mm movie camera used by Abraham Zapruder, the only eyewitness to capture the entire assassination on film.
The Newseum's original film "A Thousand Days" recounts the youthful glamour the Kennedy family brought to the White House and the newsworthy moments of a presidency cut short. The 16-minute film is shown in the Newseum's Smith Big Screen Theater, a 120-seat theater featuring a 100-foot-wide screen.