ARCHIVALLY SPEAKING: An Inside Look at the JFK Library Archives http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org Fri, 01 Sep 2017 02:25:23 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.3 The Tall Ships are Here! http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2017/06/the-tall-ships-are-here/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2017/06/the-tall-ships-are-here/#respond Wed, 21 Jun 2017 23:18:04 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=4319 Continue reading

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by Laurie Austin, Reference Archivist

Boston treasures its history as a seaport. Its deep water port was a primary source of its wealth from before the country’s founding through the years of the early Republic. It continues to be an active port today. From our vantage point at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library, we can see the large container and cruise ships coming and going through the harbor regularly. But for the next few days, Bostonians are in for a special treat—Boston Harbor is once again filled with beautiful sailing vessels large and small for the Sail Boston 2017 event.

 

The Esmeralda is visiting Boston from its home port of Valparaíso, Chile.
Credit: Esmeralda’s website

 

One of the many beautiful ships to visit is the United States Coast Guard Barque Eagle. The Eagle was originally a German ship, built in 1936 and commissioned as the Horst Wessel as a training ship for the German navy. The United States took the ship as a prize after WWII and it has since served the same purpose for the United States Coast Guard (USCG) cadets. She makes her permanent home at the USCG Academy in New London, Connecticut.

 

The modern-day USCG Eagle.
Credit: USCG Eagle’s Facebook page

 

The Eagle is currently docked at the Charlestown Navy Yard, close to where the USS Constitution is in dry dock for maintenance. I caught a glimpse of it on my way to work earlier this week and was reminded that President Kennedy visited the Eagle in 1962.

 

Photos show that when the President visited fifty-five years ago the Eagle did not yet have the distinctive orange stripe that the Coast Guard later adopted for its ships, but she did have the same eagle figurehead.

 

JFKWHP-ST-C27-3-62. President John F. Kennedy speaks with Secretary of the Treasury, C. Douglas Dillon (center), and Commandant of the United States Coast Guard (USCG), Admiral Edwin J. Roland (right), during a visit to the USCG training barque, Eagle.

 

During his visit, President Kennedy came aboard the Eagle greeted by cadets in the rigging. He reviewed the sailors, stopping to greet several, and gave a speech about the importance of the Coast Guard in American history.

 

JFKWHP-AR7413-L. President John F. Kennedy speaks to United States Coast Guard (USCG) officers during an inspection of the USCG training barque, “Eagle.” Naval Aide to the President, Captain Tazewell Shepard, stands at far left.

 

Of course, President Kennedy himself was an accomplished sailor, having grown up sailing his boat, the Victura, in the waters of Hyannis Port. He remarked in his speech,

“…there is not anyone who has sailed any of our lakes or oceans who has not at one time or another been the beneficiary of the faithful service of the Coast Guard.”

 

NLJFK2003-D01. President Kennedy’s sailboat, the Victura, on display outside of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum.

 

The Library’s audiovisual archives has a short film of President Kennedy’s visit to the Eagle, which was then docked at Pier Two of the Washington Navy Yard Annex in Washington, D.C.:

USG:3-G. Presidential Visit to U.S. Coast Guard Academy Training Barque Eagle, 15 August 1962

 

 

Link to Youtube.

 

For more photos of the President’s visit, view this folder in our White House Photographs collection. For the text of the President’s speech, view this folder in the President’s Office Files.

 

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http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2017/06/the-tall-ships-are-here/feed/ 0 Esmerelda The Esmeralda is visiting Boston from its home port of Valparaíso, Chile. Credit: Esmeralda’s website, www.esmeralda.cl USCGEagle The modern-day USCG Eagle. Credit: USCG Eagle’s Facebook Page, www.facebook.com/CoastGuardCutterEagle JFKWHP-ST-C27-3-62 JFKWHP-ST-C27-3-62, President John F. Kennedy speaks with Secretary of the Treasury, C. Douglas Dillon (center), and Commandant of the United States Coast Guard (USCG), Admiral Edwin J. Roland (right), during a visit to the USCG training barque, Eagle. JFKWHP-AR7413-L JFKWHP-AR7413-L, President John F. Kennedy speaks to United States Coast Guard (USCG) officers during an inspection of the USCG training barque, “Eagle.” Naval Aide to the President, Captain Tazewell Shepard, stands at far left. NLJFK 03-DIG-01-Victura 25 Sep 2003 NLJFK 03-DIG-01-Victura 25 Sep 2003 Framed by the Kennedy Library and the Boston skyline, President Kennedy's sailboat, the Victura, a 26 foot Wianno Senior sloop, is displayed on the grounds of the John Fitzgerald Kennedy Library and Museum, Boston, Massachusetts. Digital image by James B. Hill, John Fitzgerald Kennedy Library.
Career Day with Middle School Students: An Archivist’s Report http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2017/06/career-day-with-middle-school-students-an-archivists-report/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2017/06/career-day-with-middle-school-students-an-archivists-report/#respond Mon, 12 Jun 2017 18:56:06 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=4294 Continue reading

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by Nicola Mantzaris, Photographic Metadata Cataloger

A few years ago my sister-in-law, a middle school counselor, asked if I would be willing to participate in a Career Day event she organized at her school. She told me I had a really cool job and that the students would be excited to learn about what I do and how I came to work in the archives field. Because flattery will get you everywhere and being an archivist is very cool, I said yes; and for the past three years, I’ve been a participant in the Career Exploration Speakers Program at a middle school in Connecticut.

 

School Counselors, Kris Mantzaris and Sarah Fusaro, pull off an impressive program introducing the eighth-grade class to important life skills and a variety of professions and occupations that may strike the students’ interests. In the week leading up to the speakers’ program, students engage in activities and discussions on topics related to contemplating their future grownup selves. They learn about potential career paths, the realities of college and/or work life, balancing a personal budget, and even the prospect of moving back in with their parents. At the end of the week, career speakers are invited to present on their experiences. Students have the opportunity to hear from a range of professionals, including doctors, lawyers, engineers, music therapists, electricians, producers and creative directors in television programming, officers in law enforcement, archivists, and many more. A police dog usually makes an appearance.

 

It may seem daunting to compete with a police dog, or to stand in front of four groups of approximately 35-40 eighth graders as they rotate into the classroom to listen to you talk about yourself. But every year, I am pleasantly surprised by the students’ enthusiasm, perceptive responses, and intelligent questions.

 

I usually begin my presentation by asking how many in the room are familiar with the word archivist or archives, or see if anyone would like to tell me what an archivist does. The kids never disappoint, responding with answers like “You organize data,” and “Is it about preserving something for the future?” I try to draw upon the students’ experiences with primary source materials and their school’s library/media center, discussing the similarities and differences between archivists and librarians. I emphasize the uniqueness of archival holdings and how objects in our care therefore require everyday preservation from climate-controlled stack areas to secure reading rooms.

 

 

Another of my presentation slides lists several types of archives and record-collecting organizations; and ever since one of the teachers mentioned a couple years back that their town has a historical society, I make sure to encourage them to visit the Clinton Historical Society. This slide also leads to conversations about their own personal archives. Many students have shared stories about the family photo albums and scrapbooks they keep.

 

At this point, I drive home the importance of archives and why we should bother saving this stuff for 50, 100, or 1000 years. Archives validate our experiences; they tell our stories, and protect and preserve the knowledge of our accomplishments and our history – whether it’s personal history or public history. The job of an archivist is to collect, organize, preserve, and make available these important materials. These statements segue nicely to my specific work at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum as a metadata cataloger of photographs from the White House Photographs collection and the Kennedy Family Collection.

 

I talk about how institutions like ours enable the public to access collections remotely by creating digital copies of original materials and publishing them on the Internet in the form of digital archives. The way in which we can provide access to these digitized materials and facilitate their search and discovery on our website is through the use of metadata.

 

 

After a quick primer on examples of metadata typically captured for a digitized photograph, I invite the class to help me describe and catalog the photo on the right (above), of President Kennedy’s arrival in Dallas, Texas. I ask them to think about any relevant identifying information, or what keywords to use to make this photo searchable so that we get it as result in a Google search, for example. It’s always a fun exercise, where the kids call out what they see in the image as well as what they know about the date and place of his death: “It’s a color photo,” “Air Force One,” There’s the First Lady,” “November 22, 1963.”

 

When it comes to the Q&A portion of the presentation, I am continually floored by the students’ astute observations. They come prepared with a list of questions provided by the school counselors, which includes the familiar “What are the things you like best or least about your job?”; “What is the median salary range?”; “What is the level of training or education you need for this job?”; or “How many times have you changed careers in your life?”

 

Many of the students, however, have gone off script and asked some excellent questions that open up new discussions on archival work, such as collection and acquisition policies, and the challenges of digital preservation. I have been asked: “What makes something valuable or worth saving?”; “How do you come to get the things in your archive?”; “Do you worry about losing information or not being able to open a digital photo years from now?”; or “How long does it take from start to finish to put a photograph online?” Other students share personal connections. This year, one girl shared a story about meeting former President Obama’s Secret Service agents on Martha’s Vineyard and we bonded over being able to identify the special pins the agents wear on their suit lapels.

 

Career Day is always full of memorable moments and I look forward to next year’s event; but my absolute favorite thing about it is receiving thank-you letters from the students. I’ll end this post by sharing a couple of the letters from last year’s class. Who knows? Maybe I have inspired a future archivist or two.

 

 

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http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2017/06/career-day-with-middle-school-students-an-archivists-report/feed/ 0 Presentation Slide 3 Presentation Slide 11 Letter 1(Cropped_Name)_cropped x 2 Letter 2(Cropped_Name)_cropped x 2
Kennedy Family Collection Nitrate Negatives: A Centennial Digitization Initiative http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2017/04/kennedy-family-collection-nitrate-negatives-a-centennial-digitization-initiative/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2017/04/kennedy-family-collection-nitrate-negatives-a-centennial-digitization-initiative/#respond Thu, 13 Apr 2017 23:17:51 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=4230 Continue reading

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by Nicola Mantzaris, Photographic Metadata Cataloger

As part of the Centennial Digitization Initiative to commemorate the 100th anniversary of President John F. Kennedy’s birth, archivists have begun a large-scale project to preserve and make accessible nitrate photographic negatives from the Kennedy Family Collection. With generous grant funding from the Fund II Foundation, the project aims to provide online access to approximately 1,700 black-and-white nitrate negatives, which will be cataloged and published to the Kennedy Library’s digital archives.

 

KFC827N. John F. Kennedy (left) and Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr.
Nantasket Beach, Massachusetts, 1918
1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/2 x 4 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate)

© John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

 

The nitrate negatives comprise a subset of the photographic materials in the Kennedy Family Collection and include snapshots of John F. Kennedy, members of his immediate and extended family, as well as family friends, originating from before his birth to the early 1950s. They also feature photographs that capture Rose Fitzgerald (later, Kennedy) as a young woman during her travels abroad in the early 1900s. Similar to all family photo collections, the Kennedy Family Collection tells those unique but shared stories of daily home life, vacations, holidays, and other celebratory occasions. The nitrate negatives, however, tell a bigger story about the advent of amateur photography and the enthusiastic and prolific users of a new visual medium.

 

Nitrate and the Rise of Amateur Photography

More than a century ago, the introduction of cellulose nitrate film in still photography gave rise to a new generation of amateur photographers. By the late 1880s, nitrate became the first successful plastic film base material to support the light-sensitive emulsion layer of photographic negatives. Its lightness, flexibility, and convenience made possible technical advancements in amateur roll, single sheet, and pack film production. Film manufacturers also began introducing different models and sizes of cameras; as the photography industry evolved, companies like Eastman Kodak, Agfa, and Ansco continued to perfect and refine various formats of nitrate film.

 

KFC618N. Rosemary Kennedy, John F. Kennedy, Eunice Kennedy, Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr., and Kathleen Kennedy. Hyannis Port, Massachusetts, ca. 1925-1927 1 negative (black-and-white; 3 1/4 x 4 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

KFC618N. Rosemary Kennedy, John F. Kennedy, Eunice Kennedy, Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr., and Kathleen Kennedy.
Hyannis Port, Massachusetts, ca. 1925-1927
1 negative (black-and-white; 3 1/4 x 4 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate)
© John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

 

KFC98N. Left to right: Torbert Macdonald, Kathleen Kennedy, John F. Kennedy, Eunice Kennedy, and Jean Kennedy. Hyannis Port, Massachusetts, 1942 1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/4 x 3 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

KFC98N. Left to right: Torbert Macdonald, Kathleen Kennedy, John F. Kennedy, Eunice Kennedy, and Jean Kennedy.
Hyannis Port, Massachusetts, 1942

1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/4 x 3 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate)
© John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

 

Varieties of Nitrate Represented in the Kennedy Family Collection

After surveying the nitrate negatives in the Kennedy Family Collection, it was immediately apparent that the Kennedy and Fitzgerald families stayed on the cutting edge of camera technology; they used the latest types of film formats and sizes available during the first half of the 20th century – including 35mm roll film and 3 x 4 inch single sheet or pack film:

 

KFC1044N. Rosemary Kennedy. Kilcroney, Ireland, ca. 1938 1 negative (black-and-white; 35 mm; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

KFC1044N. Rosemary Kennedy.
Kilcroney, Ireland, ca. 1938
1 negative (black-and-white; 35 mm; film/plastic: nitrate)
© John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

 

KFC1471N. View of the Eiffel Tower and Grand Roue de Paris Ferris Wheel, during Rose Fitzgerald’s school year abroad. Paris, France, ca. 1908-1909 1 negative (black-and-white; 3 x 4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

KFC1471N. View of the Eiffel Tower and Grand Roue de Paris Ferris Wheel, during Rose Fitzgerald’s school year abroad.
Paris, France, ca. 1908-1909
1 negative (black-and-white; 3 x 4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate)
© John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

 

Scattered throughout the collection are photographic processing envelopes, which offer insight into the nitrate negatives typical of photographs from this time period and identify specific formats utilized by the Kennedy family. See examples below for 127 and 620 roll film:

 

The Kennedy family had their 127 roll film developed while on vacation in St. Moritz, Switzerland.

The Kennedy family had their 127 roll film developed while on vacation in St. Moritz, Switzerland.

 

Processing envelope for size 620 roll film for Lady Hartington (neé Kathleen Kennedy).

Processing envelope for size 620 roll film for Lady Hartington (neé Kathleen Kennedy).

 

While not all of the nitrate negatives in the collection have corresponding film development receipts or manufacturer edge-printing identifications, the vast majority, with the exception of the occasional odd-size negative, matches the following designations common to commercial roll and film pack formats of the time:

 

Film Format Designation(s) Nominal image size
120 (105, 520, 50, 620) 2 ¼ x 3 ¼ inches

 

KFC1145N. Kennedy Family. Palm Beach, Florida, 25 December 1937 1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/4 x 3 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

KFC1145N. Kennedy Family.
Palm Beach, Florida, 25 December 1937
1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/4 x 3 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate)
© John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

 

 

Film Format Designation(s) Nominal image size
120 (220) 1 ⅝ x 2 ¼ inches

 

KFC1576N. “Canal Construction” [photograph taken during Rose Fitzgerald’s tour of Panama with the Boston Chamber of Commerce]. 1913: April - May 1 negative (black-and-white; 1 5/8 x 2 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation Boston Chamber of Commerce Tour of Panama, Scenes, 1913: April-May [Spotting and damage are original to the negative.] Photographer unknown. Copyright John F. Kennedy Library Foundation. Kennedy Family Collection. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston

KFC1576N. “Canal Construction” [photograph taken during Rose Fitzgerald’s tour of Panama with the Boston Chamber of Commerce]. 1913: April – May
1 negative (black-and-white; 1 5/8 x 2 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate)
© John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

 

 

Film Format Designation(s) Nominal image size
120 2 ¼ x 3 ½ inches or 6 x 9 cm

 

KFC2782N. Spain, tour of combat areas [photograph taken during Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr.'s travels in Spain at the time of the Spanish Civil War]. 27 February 1939 1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/4 x 3 1/2 inches (6 x 9 cm); film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

KFC2782N. Spain, tour of combat areas [photograph taken during Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr.’s travels in Spain at the time of the Spanish Civil War]. 27 February 1939
1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/4 x 3 1/2 inches (6 x 9 cm); film/plastic: nitrate)
© John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

 

 

Film Format Designation(s) Nominal image size
116 (516, 616) 2 ½ x 4 ¼ inches

 

KFC533N. Jean Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy, Patricia Kennedy, Eunice Kennedy, and an unidentified boy play football. Bronxville, New York, October 1934 1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/2 x 4 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

KFC533N. Jean Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy, Patricia Kennedy, Eunice Kennedy, and an unidentified boy play football.
Bronxville, New York, October 1934
1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/2 x 4 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate)
© John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

 

 

Film Format Designation(s) Nominal image size
127 1 ⅝ x 2 ½ inches

 

KFC1073N Rosemary Kennedy, Edward M. Kennedy, Jean Kennedy, and Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy. St. Moritz, Switzerland, ca. 24 December 1938 – January 1939 1 negative (black-and-white; 1 5/8 x 2 1/2 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

KFC1073N. Rosemary Kennedy, Edward M. Kennedy, Jean Kennedy, and Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy.
St. Moritz, Switzerland, ca. 24 December 1938 – January 1939
1 negative (black-and-white; 1 5/8 x 2 1/2 inches; film/plastic: nitrate)
© John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

 

 

Film Format Designation(s) Nominal image size
127 1 ⅝ x 1 ⅝  inches

 

KFC2792N. Kathleen Kennedy and Robert F. Kennedy. Palm Beach, Florida, April 1941 1 negative (black-and-white; 1 5/8 x 1 5/8 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

KFC2792N. Kathleen Kennedy and Robert F. Kennedy.
Palm Beach, Florida, April 1941
1 negative (black-and-white; 1 5/8 x 1 5/8 inches; film/plastic: nitrate)
© John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

 

 

Film Format Designation(s) Nominal image size
118 (107, 108, 119, 518, 124, 51) 3 ¼ x 4 ¼ inches

 

KFC621N. John F. Kennedy (foreground) and Joseph P. Kennedy, Sr. Hyannis Port, Massachusetts, ca. 1925-1927 1 negative (black-and-white; 3 1/4 x 4 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

KFC621N. John F. Kennedy (foreground) and Joseph P. Kennedy, Sr.
Hyannis Port, Massachusetts, ca. 1925-1927
1 negative (black-and-white; 3 1/4 x 4 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate)
© John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

 

 

Film Format Designation(s) Nominal image size
122 (522, 125, 543) 3 ¼ x 5 ½ inches

 

KFC1481N. Left to right: Hugh Nawn, Rose Fitzgerald, Sir Thomas Lipton, Agnes Fitzgerald, and John F. “Honey Fitz” Fitzgerald. Cowes, England, August 1909 1 negative (black-and-white; 3 1/4 x 5 1/2 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

KFC1481N. Left to right: Hugh Nawn, Rose Fitzgerald, Sir Thomas Lipton, Agnes Fitzgerald, and John F. “Honey Fitz” Fitzgerald.
Cowes, England, August 1909
1 negative (black-and-white; 3 1/4 x 5 1/2 inches; film/plastic: nitrate)
© John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

 

 

Nitrate Preservation Won’t Wait

In the early years of photography, nitrate film represented both beauty and innovation with its aesthetically rich tones and exceptional technical properties. Its chemical composition, however, posed problems and nitrate soon became renowned for being extremely flammable, inherently unstable, and readily susceptible to rapid deterioration and loss of image detail. By the time film manufacturers discontinued nitrate production in 1950, prolific amateur photographers like the Kennedy and Fitzgerald families had accumulated numerous nitrate negatives in their personal collections.

 

KFC2070N. Eunice Fitzgerald. Dorchester, Massachusetts, ca. 1908-1913 1 negative (black-and-white; 3 x 4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

KFC2070N. Eunice Fitzgerald.
Dorchester, Massachusetts, ca. 1908-1913
1 negative (black-and-white; 3 x 4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate)
© John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

 

Very few nitrate negatives in the Kennedy Family Collection are as severely damaged as the one above; though the rate of decay is not as high for still negatives as it is for rolled motion picture film, the threat to image stability is an urgent preservation concern for archives entrusted with their care. Current best practices for the safe handling and long-term preservation of nitrate materials came out of the archivist-driven “Nitrate Won’t Wait!” movement, which mobilized the profession to help save this early photographic heritage literally in danger of disappearing.

 

At the Kennedy Library, cellulose nitrate materials are stored separately in a cold storage environment where freezing temperatures arrest eventual decomposition. Preservation reformatting and/or digitization is common archival practice when it comes to endangered materials like nitrate. Faithful digital surrogates provide greater access and ensure future use while the physical negatives remain safely preserved in their original format and condition.

 

KFC2712N. John F. Kennedy (right) and Paul “Red” Fay. Palm Beach, Florida, 1945 1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/2 x 4 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

KFC2712N. John F. Kennedy (right) and Paul “Red” Fay.
Palm Beach, Florida, 1945
1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/2 x 4 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate)
© John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

 

 

Increased Access to Historic Negatives from an Historic Family Photo Collection

Digitization of all Kennedy Family Collection nitrate negatives is complete thanks to reformatting services provided by the Northeast Document Conservation Center (NEDCC). Archivists are steadily working on preparing the access and archival master files for ingest into the Library’s digital asset management system.

 

At this stage, archivists are embedding in each file metadata that: describes the digital object; authenticates its original source (physical dimensions and material condition); and documents copyright and use restriction information and the technical specifications used in its creation.

 

Next steps include creating robust descriptions and metadata records for all nitrate negatives so that users can browse, search, and discover these historic materials on the Library’s website. Descriptions will also incorporate original caption and inscription information to retain meaningful links between the original negatives and their many derivative prints found in the various scrapbooks and albums contained in the collection.

 

Archivists look forward to sharing updates on the cataloging progress of the Kennedy Family Collection nitrate negatives. Stay tuned to this blog and be sure to check the collection finding aid in the coming months for hyperlinks to digitized content.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

KFC1721N and KFC1722N. Left to right: Tom Killefer, Edward M. Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy, and Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr.
Palm Beach, Florida, December 1941 – January 1942
2 negatives (black-and-white; 2 1/4 x 3 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate)
© John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

 

 

SOURCES

Fernanda Valverde, María. “Photographic Negatives: Nature and Evolution of Processes, 2ndMellon Advanced Residency Program in Photograph Conservation (George Eastman House/Image Permanence Institute). 2005. https://www.imagepermanenceinstitute.org/webfm_send/302

 

“Film Format.” Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Film_format

 

Fischer, Monique. “5.1 A Short Guide to Film Base Photographic Materials: Identification, Care, and Duplication.” Northeast Document Conservation Center. https://www.nedcc.org/free-resources/preservation-leaflets/5.-photographs/5.1-a-short-guide-to-film-base-photographic-materials-identification,-care,-and-duplication

 

“The History of Kodak Roll Films.” The Brownie Camera Page. http://www.brownie-camera.com/film.shtml

 

“History of Kodak Roll Film Numbers.” http://bvipirate.com/Kodak/FilmHist.html

 

The Focal encyclopedia of photography. 1969. New York: McGraw-Hill.

 

Slide, Anthony. 2001. Nitrate won’t wait: a history of film preservation in the United States. Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland & Co.

 

Vitale, Tim. “History, Science, Preservation and Treatment of Cellulose Nitrate Still Film.” June 12, 2009. http://videopreservation.conservation-us.org/library/history_storage_of_cellulose_nitrate_film_v26.pdf

 

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http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2017/04/kennedy-family-collection-nitrate-negatives-a-centennial-digitization-initiative/feed/ 0 KFC827N. John F. Kennedy (left) and Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr. Nantasket Beach, Massachusetts, 1918 1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/2 x 4 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC618N. Rosemary Kennedy, John F. Kennedy, Eunice Kennedy, Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr., and Kathleen Kennedy. Hyannis Port, Massachusetts, ca. 1925-1927 1 negative (black-and-white; 3 1/4 x 4 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC618N. Rosemary Kennedy, John F. Kennedy, Eunice Kennedy, Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr., and Kathleen Kennedy. Hyannis Port, Massachusetts, ca. 1925-1927 1 negative (black-and-white; 3 1/4 x 4 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC98N. Left to right: Torbert Macdonald, Kathleen Kennedy, John F. Kennedy, Eunice Kennedy, and Jean Kennedy. Hyannis Port, Massachusetts, 1942 1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/4 x 3 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC98N. Left to right: Torbert Macdonald, Kathleen Kennedy, John F. Kennedy, Eunice Kennedy, and Jean Kennedy. Hyannis Port, Massachusetts, 1942 1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/4 x 3 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC1044N. Rosemary Kennedy. Kilcroney, Ireland, ca. 1938 1 negative (black-and-white; 35 mm; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC1044N. Rosemary Kennedy. Kilcroney, Ireland, ca. 1938 1 negative (black-and-white; 35 mm; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation HyperFocal: 75825664 KFC1471N. View of the Eiffel Tower and Grand Roue de Paris Ferris Wheel, during Rose Fitzgerald’s school year abroad. Paris, France, ca. 1908-1909 1 negative (black-and-white; 3 x 4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation IMG_127envelope The Kennedy family had their 127 roll film developed while on vacation in St. Moritz, Switzerland. IMG_620envelope Processing envelope for size 620 roll film for Lady Hartington (neé Kathleen Kennedy). KFC1145N. Kennedy Family. Palm Beach, Florida, 25 December 1937 1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/4 x 3 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC1145N. Kennedy Family. Palm Beach, Florida, 25 December 1937 1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/4 x 3 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC1576N KFC1576N. “Canal Construction” [photograph taken during Rose Fitzgerald’s tour of Panama with the Boston Chamber of Commerce]. 1913: April - May 1 negative (black-and-white; 1 5/8 x 2 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation Boston Chamber of Commerce Tour of Panama, Scenes, 1913: April-May [Spotting and damage are original to the negative.] Photographer unknown. Copyright John F. Kennedy Library Foundation. Kennedy Family Collection. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston KFC2782N KFC2782N. Spain, tour of combat areas [photograph taken during Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr.'s travels in Spain at the time of the Spanish Civil War]. 27 February 1939 1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/4 x 3 1/2 inches (6 x 9 cm); film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC533N. Jean Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy, Patricia Kennedy, Eunice Kennedy, and an unidentified boy play football. Bronxville, New York, October 1934 1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/2 x 4 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC533N. Jean Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy, Patricia Kennedy, Eunice Kennedy, and an unidentified boy play football. Bronxville, New York, October 1934 1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/2 x 4 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC1073N Rosemary Kennedy, Edward M. Kennedy, Jean Kennedy, and Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy. St. Moritz, Switzerland, ca. 24 December 1938 – January 1939 1 negative (black-and-white; 1 5/8 x 2 1/2 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC1073N. Rosemary Kennedy, Edward M. Kennedy, Jean Kennedy, and Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy. St. Moritz, Switzerland, ca. 24 December 1938 – January 1939 1 negative (black-and-white; 1 5/8 x 2 1/2 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC2792N. Kathleen Kennedy and Robert F. Kennedy. Palm Beach, Florida, April 1941 1 negative (black-and-white; 1 5/8 x 1 5/8 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC2792N. Kathleen Kennedy and Robert F. Kennedy. Palm Beach, Florida, April 1941 1 negative (black-and-white; 1 5/8 x 1 5/8 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC621N KFC621N. John F. Kennedy (foreground) and Joseph P. Kennedy, Sr. Hyannis Port, Massachusetts, ca. 1925-1927 1 negative (black-and-white; 3 1/4 x 4 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC1481N. Left to right: Hugh Nawn, Rose Fitzgerald, Sir Thomas Lipton, Agnes Fitzgerald, and John F. “Honey Fitz” Fitzgerald. Cowes, England, August 1909 1 negative (black-and-white; 3 1/4 x 5 1/2 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC1481N. Left to right: Hugh Nawn, Rose Fitzgerald, Sir Thomas Lipton, Agnes Fitzgerald, and John F. “Honey Fitz” Fitzgerald. Cowes, England, August 1909 1 negative (black-and-white; 3 1/4 x 5 1/2 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC2070N. Eunice Fitzgerald. Dorchester, Massachusetts, ca. 1908-1913 1 negative (black-and-white; 3 x 4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC2070N. Eunice Fitzgerald. Dorchester, Massachusetts, ca. 1908-1913 1 negative (black-and-white; 3 x 4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC2712N. John F. Kennedy (right) and Paul “Red” Fay. Palm Beach, Florida, 1945 1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/2 x 4 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation KFC2712N. John F. Kennedy (right) and Paul “Red” Fay. Palm Beach, Florida, 1945 1 negative (black-and-white; 2 1/2 x 4 1/4 inches; film/plastic: nitrate) © John F. Kennedy Library Foundation HyperFocal: 8388736 HyperFocal: 8388736 HyperFocal: 68747328
Spotlight on Maurice Sorrell, Photographer http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2017/02/spotlight-on-maurice-sorrell-photographer/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2017/02/spotlight-on-maurice-sorrell-photographer/#comments Mon, 27 Feb 2017 17:06:57 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=4195 Continue reading

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by Laurie Austin, Audiovisual and Textual Reference Archivist

In 1961 photographer Maurice Sorrell found himself in the middle of a public civil rights controversy and ultimately broke the race barrier to the White House News Photographers Association. Born in Washington, D.C., c. 1914, Sorrell began taking photographs in his childhood and by 1946 was photographing weddings and local events on his Speed Graphic camera. He received some photography training in a U.S. Department of Agriculture program and for a while worked behind the scenes in the photography department at the Pentagon. Restricted to the Pentagon darkroom because he was African American, Sorrell turned his attention to freelance photography in 1957.[i]  By 1958, Sorrell’s work was already being recognized by the Capital Press Club, an association of African American press members.

 

JFKCAMP1960-1047-004-p0035_croppedJFKCAMP1960-1047-004-p0035 (crop). Maurice Sorrell is pictured here (left) in a 1959 Capital Press Club Dinner program. View entire folder here.

 

Working for the Washington Afro-American newspaper, Sorrell covered President Eisenhower and continued to cover the new Kennedy Administration in 1961.

 

JFKWHCNF-2642-004-610201-Sorrell_croppedJFKWHCNF-2642-004-p0001. Letter from White House Press Secretary Pierre Salinger to C. Sumner Stone, Jr., Editor of the Washington Afro-American, approving credentials for photographer Maurice Sorrell, 1 February 1961.

 

In early 1961 there were still no black members of the White House News Photographers Association (WHNPA), which was a private organization. This detail did not go unnoticed by the White House and objections to this fact had already been raised with members of the Kennedy Administration.

 

JFKWHCSF-0842-012_WHNewsPhotogs_croppedJFKWHCSF-0842-012-p0044. Letter from Simeon Booker, Chief of the Washington Bureau of Johnson Publishing Company, to White House Press Secretary Pierre Salinger, explaining past attempts of Elwood Davis to join the White House News Photographers Association, 14 April 1961.

 

Despite his skill as a photographer and the fact that he had now covered two presidents, Sorrell’s application as a member of the WHNPA was being stalled due to a member veto.[ii]

 

With the WHNPA Dinner approaching in May 1961, President Kennedy received a question at his 12 April press conference:

 

JFKPOF-054-011-p0013_PressConf610412_croppedJFKPOF-054-011-p0013 (crop). Excerpt of text from President Kennedy’s 12 April 1961 Press Conference. View entire folder here.

 

QUESTION: Mr. President, the White House News Photographers Association bars Negro members. Do you feel that a group attached to the White House should follow such a policy?

 

THE PRESIDENT: No, I don’t. I hope they will let everyone in. …I am sure when the matter is brought to their attention that they will permit everyone who is accredited and is a photographer to come to the White House. That’s the way I’d certainly like to see it.

 

The next day, at Pierre Salinger’s press briefing, he got a follow-up question on this topic.

 

JFKWHSFPS-051-006-610413-003_highlighted_croppedJFKWHSFPS-051-006-p0064. Highlighted excerpt from Pierre Salinger’s 13 April 1961 Press Briefing.

 

MR. SALINGER: I will say this, it is my understanding that the White House Photographers Association does not have any Negro members. I think that’s an accurate statement. Now, if the impression was given that because Negroes are not in this Association they can’t come into the White House, that was an erroneous impression, because all you have to have is a White House card and you can come into the White House.

 

What the President was directing himself to, was that he thought that any association which is connected in any way with the White House should not bar Negroes from membership, and that is his position…

 

The pressure was now on in a very public way for the WHNPA to accept an African American photographer; meanwhile Maurice Sorrell’s application was still pending. Within the next two weeks he was finally accepted. On April 28, Sorrell’s editor sent a telegram to President Kennedy expressing his pleasure at Sorrell’s election to membership in the White House News Photographers Association, and his appreciation to the President for his stance against racial discrimination with regard to any group associated with the White House.

 

JFKWHCSF-0370-002-p0018_croppedJFKWHCSF-0370-002-p0019_croppedJFKWHCSF-0370-002-p0018 and p0019. Telegram from C. Sumner Stone Jr. to President Kennedy, 28 April 1961.

 

From the markings on this copy of the letter, we can tell that President Kennedy himself sent a response to Stone expressing his pleasure at this development.

 

JFKWHCSF-0370-002-p0017_croppedJFKWHCSF-0370-002-p0017. Letter from President Kennedy to C. Sumner Stone, Jr., 2 May 1961.

 

The timing was no coincidence. President Kennedy subsequently appeared at the WHNPA dinner on 19 May 1961. After the dinner and entertainment from artists including Chet Atkins and his Orchestra, President Kennedy was presented with an honorary membership to the White House News Photographers Association. Without Sorrell’s own membership in the WHNPA, President Kennedy would not have attended this dinner, much less accepted this honor.

 

AR6598-DJFKWHP-AR6598-D. President of WHNPA, Frank Cancellare, and President-elect of WHNPA, Arthur V. Lodovichetti, present an honorary membership to the White House News Photographers Association to President John F. Kennedy. Sheraton Park Hotel, Washington, D.C., 19 May 1961.

 

Sorrell’s career as a news photographer continued, and the archives show that he switched employers around June 1962. Leaving the Washington Afro-American, Sorrell began his 31 year tenure at Johnson Publishing Company, which published the magazines Jet and Ebony until 2016.

 

JFKWHCNF-2642-004-620614-Sorrell_cropped

JFKWHCNF-2642-004-p0034. Letter from Pierre Salinger to Simeon Booker, Jr., Johnson Publishing Company’s Washington Bureau Chief, acknowledging a change in credentials for Maurice Sorrell, 14 June 1962.

 

Throughout his career, Sorrell was a witness to the Civil Rights Movement and provided the imagery of events like the Montgomery to Selma March to his readers. He covered nine different presidential administrations and traveled to at least 24 different countries.[iii] The John F. Kennedy Presidential Library has some of Sorrell’s work in its archives, too. In 1960 he took the following photograph of Marjorie Lawson and an unidentified man during John F. Kennedy’s presidential campaign. Lawson was a lawyer and served as head of the 1960 campaign’s civil rights section. When President Kennedy appointed her to the D.C. Juvenile Court in 1962, she became the first black woman to serve as a Juvenile Court judge.

 

PC1771 ca. 1960 Marjorie Lawson (left) stands with an unidentified man infront of a poster for John F. Kennedy's 1960 Presidential Campaign Please credit: "Copyright Maurice Sorrell. President's Collection Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

PC1771, c. 1960
Marjorie Lawson (left) stands with an unidentified man in front of a poster for John F. Kennedy’s 1960 Presidential Campaign.
Please credit: “Copyright Maurice Sorrell. President’s Collection Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston.”

 

Not only did Sorrell capture decades of history, he was a mentor to others who followed in his footsteps. It is clear that he was beloved. In recognition of his distinction in photography throughout his professional career, the African American Photographers Association, called the Exposure Group, awarded its first lifetime achievement award to Maurice Sorrell in 1997. Thereafter the award itself has been known as the Maurice Sorrell Lifetime Achievement Award, which continues to be given today. It recognizes the high standards set by Mr. Sorrell and honors “excellence in a photographer’s career for an overall lifetime body of work or major area of concentration.”[iv]

 

Maurice Sorrell recalled those early days:

At times, I had problems shooting in the White House. They had a little thing where they would get arm in arm and try to push me back. Once they found out that I could shoot as well as they could, they accepted me.[v]

 

 


[i] http://encyclopedia.jrank.org/articles/pages/4472/Sorrell-Maurice-c-1914-1998.html

[ii] https://www.whnpa.org/about/history-of-the-white-house-news-photographers-association/

[iii] http://encyclopedia.jrank.org/articles/pages/4472/Sorrell-Maurice-c-1914-1998.html

[iv] http://www.exposuregroup.org/exposure-group-events/index.shtml

[v] https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/local/1997/07/05/celebrating-a-lifetime-of-being-in-focus/a0ce2cba-5912-4780-988e-bebd8485182f/?utm_term=.9acac38cc0ae

 

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http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2017/02/spotlight-on-maurice-sorrell-photographer/feed/ 2 JFKCAMP1960-1047-004-p0035_cropped JFKWHCNF-2642-004-610201-Sorrell_cropped JFKWHCSF-0842-012_WHNewsPhotogs_cropped JFKPOF-054-011-p0013_PressConf610412_cropped JFKWHSFPS-051-006-610413-003_highlighted_cropped JFKWHCSF-0370-002-p0018_cropped JFKWHCSF-0370-002-p0019_cropped JFKWHCSF-0370-002-p0017_cropped AR6598-D JFKWHCNF-2642-004-620614-Sorrell_cropped PC1771 PC1771 ca. 1960 Marjorie Lawson (left) stands with an unidentified man infront of a poster for John F. Kennedy's 1960 Presidential Campaign Please credit: "Copyright Maurice Sorrell. President's Collection Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"
Digitization of Photographs from President John F. Kennedy’s Trip to Germany http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/12/digitization-of-photographs-from-president-john-f-kennedys-trip-to-germany/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/12/digitization-of-photographs-from-president-john-f-kennedys-trip-to-germany/#comments Sat, 17 Dec 2016 22:17:11 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=4147 Continue reading

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by Laura Kintz, Audiovisual Metadata Cataloger

We are pleased to announce that all White House Photographs from President John F. Kennedy’s trip to Germany in June of 1963 are now digitized in full. Over two dozen photographs from the trip had previously been cataloged, but all 153 photographs are now accessible online through the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum’s digital archives.

 

These photographs, covering June 23 to June 26, 1963, document President Kennedy’s only official trip to what was then a divided Germany. He spent four days in West Germany, also known as the Federal Republic of Germany, inaugurating a 10-day trip to Europe that also included visits to Ireland, England, and Italy. During those four days, the President visited several cities and towns, including Bonn, Cologne, Hanau, Frankfurt, and West Berlin. He delivered remarks, met with government officials, signed cities’ “Golden Books” for distinguished guests, visited with U.S. Embassy employees and members of the U.S. military, and greeted German well-wishers. Occurring during a contentious time in Germany’s history, President Kennedy’s visit represented the United States’ commitment to supporting West Germany and its leaders, including Chancellor Konrad Adenauer and President Heinrich Lübke.

 

KN-C29231 23 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, Bonn: Arrival, Konrad Adenauer, Chancellor of West Germany pictured, 9:50AM Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

JFKWHP-KN-C29231. 23 June 1963
President John F. Kennedy Arrives at Wahn Airport in Bonn, Germany. Chancellor of West Germany, Konrad Adenauer, stands right of President Kennedy.

 

ST-C230-33-63 23 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, Cologne: Motorcade, Cathedral [Note: Scratches and blemishes throughout image are original to the negative.] Please credit "Cecil Stoughton. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

JFKWHP-ST-C230-33-63. 23 June 1963
President John F. Kennedy’s Motorcade in Cologne, Germany.

 

KN-C29295 23 June 1963 President John F. Kennedy addresses an assembled crowd in Market Square while standing on the stair landing of the Rathaus. Photograph includes: President Kennedy, interpreter Robert H. Lochner, Eunice Shriver (partially hidden), officials, and spectators. Rathaus, Bonn, Germany. Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

JFKWHP-KN-C29295. 23 June 1963
President John F. Kennedy Speaks at Old City Hall in Bonn, Germany.

 

KN-C29312 24 June 1963 President John F. Kennedy poses on the steps of Villa Hammersmidt with the President of the Federal Republic of Germany Heinrich Luebke and other officials. President Kennedy was attending a meeting with Chancellor Konrad Adenauer during his trip to Gemany. Villa Hammerschmidt, Bonn, Germany. Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

JFKWHP-KN-C29312. 24 June 1963
President John F. Kennedy with President of West Germany, Dr. Heinrich Lübke, at Villa Hammerschmidt in Bonn, Germany.

 

ST-C230-42-63 25 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, Frankfurt: Frankfurt Rathaus, 3:15PM [Scratches throughout image are original to the negative.] Please credit "White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

JFKWHP-ST-C230-42-63. 25 June 1963
President John F. Kennedy at City Hall in Frankfurt, Germany.

 

Among President Kennedy’s numerous speeches in Germany was one given at the signing of the charter for the German Development Service, an organization equivalent to the Peace Corps. The President’s sister Eunice Kennedy Shriver and Secretary-General of the International Peace Corps, Richard Goodwin, were also present at the ceremony.

 

ST-C230-41-63 24 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, Bonn: Villa Hammerschmidt, Peace Corps Ceremony, 11:40AM [Note: Scratches and blemishes throughout image are original to the negative.] Please credit "Cecil Stoughton. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

JFKWHP-ST-C230-41-63. 24 June 1963
President John F. Kennedy Speaks at Signing of Charter Establishing German Development Service in Bonn, Germany. Secretary-General of the International Peace Corps, Richard Goodwin, stands near center right.

 

KN-C29301 23 June 1963 President John F. Kennedy greets several officials during a meeting with Chancellor Konrad Adenauer. Photograph includes: President Kennedy, Eunice Shriver, President Heinrich Luebke, and a crowd of officials, guests, and photographers. Villa Hammerschmidt, Bonn, Germany. Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

JFKWHP-KN-C29301. 24 June 1963
President John F. Kennedy at Signing of Charter Establishing German Development Service in Bonn, Germany. Eunice Kennedy Shriver stands at center, wearing yellow.

 

President Kennedy also took the time to visit American troops stationed at Fliegerhorst Kaserne, a military base in the town of Hanau. He viewed military displays and had lunch in the mess hall, where military cooks presented him with a cake in the shape of PT-109, the boat that the President commanded during World War II.

 

KN-C29255 25 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, Hanau: Arrival at Fliegerhorst Kaserne, address, and inspection of troops and equipment, 10:45AM Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

JFKWHP-KN-C29255. 25 June 1963
President John F. Kennedy Inspects Military Troops and Equipment at Fliegerhorst Kaserne in Hanau, Germany.

 

ST-C230-28-63 25 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, Hanau: Arrival at Fliegerhorst Kaserne, address, and inspection of troops and equipment, 10:45A [Note: Scratches and blemishes throughout image are original to the negative.] Please credit "Cecil Stoughton. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

JFKWHP-ST-C230-28-63. 25 June 1963
President John F. Kennedy Inspects Military Troops and Equipment at Fliegerhorst Kaserne in Hanau, Germany.

 

KN-C29386 25 June 1963 PT-109 cake presented to President John F. Kennedy by unidentified Army Chefs. Troop Mess, Fliegerhorst Kaserne, Hanau, Germany. Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

JFKWHP-KN-C29386. 25 June 1963
PT-109 Cake to Commemorate President John F. Kennedy’s Visit to Fliegerhorst Kaserne in Hanau, Germany.

 

Of significance during President Kennedy’s trip to Germany were his remarks delivered at Rudolph Wilde Platz outside West Berlin’s city hall, Rathaus Schöneberg, on June 26. In this speech, the President famously declared, “Ich bin ein Berliner,” or “I am a Berliner.” One photograph from this event was previously cataloged, but newly-available photos provide different vantage points of the large crowds who gathered for the occasion.

 

ST-C230-17-63 26 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, West Berlin: President Kennedy addresses crowd at Rathaus Schöneberg, 12:50PM [Scratches throughout image are original to the negative.] Please credit "Cecil Stoughton. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

JFKWHP-ST-C230-17-63. 26 June 1963
President John F. Kennedy at Rudolph Wilde Platz in Berlin, Germany.

 

KN-C29217 26 June 1963 Crowd and cameramen gathered in West Berlin to listen to President John F. Kennedy's address during his trip to Germany. Rathaus, West Berlin, Germany. Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

JFKWHP-KN-C29217. 26 June 1963
Crowds Gather for President John F. Kennedy’s Address at Rudolph Wilde Platz in Berlin, Germany.

 

West Berlin was not the only site where crowds converged to see President Kennedy. The entire trip was characterized by throngs of people who took to the streets and plazas of West Germany to see the President, either as his motorcade passed by or as he delivered remarks. These photographs provide evidence of the sheer volume of people who gathered for the President’s visit.

 

ST-C230-15-63 23 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, Cologne: Kölner Rathaus (City Hall) Please credit "Cecil Stoughton. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

JFKWHP-ST-C230-15-63. 23 June 1963
President John F. Kennedy Speaks at City Hall in Cologne, Germany.

 

ST-C231-19-63 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany Please credit "Cecil Stoughton. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

JFKWHP-ST-C231-19-63. 1963
President John F. Kennedy’s Motorcade in Frankfurt, Germany.

 

KN-C29246 26 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, West Berlin: President Kennedy addresses Free University, 3:30PM Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

JFKWHP-KN-C29246. 26 June 1963
Crowds Gather for President John F. Kennedy’s Address at Free University in Berlin, Germany.

 

One notable result of cataloging these photographs was that metadata catalogers were able to identify numerous people who had previously been unidentified in the White House Photographs collection. Using both textual and audiovisual resources within the Kennedy Library’s collections, as well as contemporary newspaper accounts, Ancestry.com, and other resources, we were able to add 19 names to the Kennedy Library’s database of personal name browsing terms. Among them are: Director of Radio in the American Sector (RIAS) in Berlin, Robert Lochner, who served as President Kennedy’s translator for much of the trip; several members of the United States Armed Forces who were stationed in Germany, including Commander in Chief of the U.S. Army in Europe, General Paul L. Freeman, Jr., Commander in Chief of U.S. Air Forces in Europe, General Truman H. Landon and U.S. Army in Europe Project Officer, Colonel Frank Meszar; and Rector of Free University in Berlin, Ernst Heinitz, who conferred an honorary citizenship award upon the President on his last day in Germany.

 

KN-C29242 23 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, Cologne: Kölner Rathaus (City Hall) Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

JFKWHP-KN-C29242. 23 June 1963
President John F. Kennedy Speaks at City Hall in Cologne, Germany. Director of Radio in the American Sector (RIAS) in Berlin and translator for President Kennedy, Robert Lochner, stands on platform at right.

 

ST-C230-8-63 25 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, Hanau: Arrival at Fliegerhorst Kaserne, address, and inspection of troops and equipment, 10:45A [Note: Scratches throughout image are original to the negative.] Please credit "Cecil Stoughton. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

JFKWHP-ST-C230-8-63. 25 June 1963
President John F. Kennedy Inspects Military Troops and Equipment at Fliegerhorst Kaserne in Hanau, Germany. General Truman H. Landon and General Paul L. Freeman, Jr., stand right of President Kennedy. Colonel Frank Meszar stands in background at center (face partially obscured).

 

KN-C29292 26 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, West Berlin: President Kennedy addresses Free University, 3:30PM [Note: Horizontal streaks are original to the negative.] Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

JFKWHP-KN-C29292. 26 June 1963
President John F. Kennedy at Free University in Berlin, Germany. President Kennedy receives an honorary citizenship award from University Rector, Ernst Heinitz.

 

President Kennedy’s trip to Germany represented a significant diplomatic venture of his presidency. The photographs from the trip, long available for viewing onsite at the Kennedy Library, may now be found by online users all over the world. In addition to the inclusion of browsing terms for individual people, other terms have been added to the photographs to aid in searching for specific subjects, places, and organizations. The images offer insight into President Kennedy’s travels to a much broader audience as a result.

 

Browse all photos from President Kennedy’s trip to Germany:

Germany, Bonn: Arrival, Konrad Adenauer, Chancellor of West Germany pictured

Germany, Cologne: Kölner Rathaus (City Hall)

Germany, Cologne: Motorcade, Cathedral

Germany, Bonn: City Hall, ceremonies and remarks

Germany, Bonn: Address at the American Community Theater before the American Embassy staff

Germany, Bonn: Villa Hammerschmidt, Peace Corps Ceremony

Germany, Bonn: President Kennedy gives a press conference

Germany, Bonn: President Kennedy with Heinrich Lübke

Germany, Bad Godesburg, U.S. Ambassador’s Residence: President Kennedy signs Golden Book

Germany, Hanau: Arrival at Fliegerhorst Kaserne, address, and inspection of troops and equipment

Germany, Hanau: President Kennedy has lunch with U.S. enlisted troops and their officers at Fliegerhorst Kaserne

Germany, Hanau: Departure from Fliegerhorst Kaserne

Germany, Frankfurt: Frankfurt Rathaus

Germany, Frankfurt: President Kennedy gives address in Roemerberg Square

Germany, Frankfurt: President Kennedy at Paulskirche

Germany, West Berlin: President Kennedy arrives at Tegel Airport

Germany, West Berlin, President Kennedy views the Berlin Wall at the Brandenburg Gate

Germany, West Berlin: President Kennedy at Checkpoint Charlie

Germany, West Berlin: President Kennedy addresses crowd at Rathaus Schöneberg

Germany, West Berlin: President Kennedy in motorcade with Willy Brandt, Mayor of West Berlin and Konrad Adenauer, Chancellor of West Germany

Germany, West Berlin: President Kennedy addresses Free University

 

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http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/12/digitization-of-photographs-from-president-john-f-kennedys-trip-to-germany/feed/ 5 KN-C29231 KN-C29231 23 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, Bonn: Arrival, Konrad Adenauer, Chancellor of West Germany pictured, 9:50AM Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston" ST-C230-33-63 ST-C230-33-63 23 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, Cologne: Motorcade, Cathedral [Note: Scratches and blemishes throughout image are original to the negative.] Please credit "Cecil Stoughton. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston" KN-C29295 KN-C29295 23 June 1963 President John F. Kennedy addresses an assembled crowd in Market Square while standing on the stair landing of the Rathaus. Photograph includes: President Kennedy, interpreter Robert H. Lochner, Eunice Shriver (partially hidden), officials, and spectators. Rathaus, Bonn, Germany. Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston" KN-C29312 KN-C29312 24 June 1963 President John F. Kennedy poses on the steps of Villa Hammersmidt with the President of the Federal Republic of Germany Heinrich Luebke and other officials. President Kennedy was attending a meeting with Chancellor Konrad Adenauer during his trip to Gemany. Villa Hammerschmidt, Bonn, Germany. Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston" ST-C230-42-63 ST-C230-42-63 25 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, Frankfurt: Frankfurt Rathaus, 3:15PM [Scratches throughout image are original to the negative.] Please credit "White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston" ST-C230-41-63 ST-C230-41-63 24 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, Bonn: Villa Hammerschmidt, Peace Corps Ceremony, 11:40AM [Note: Scratches and blemishes throughout image are original to the negative.] Please credit "Cecil Stoughton. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston" KN-C29301 KN-C29301 23 June 1963 President John F. Kennedy greets several officials during a meeting with Chancellor Konrad Adenauer. Photograph includes: President Kennedy, Eunice Shriver, President Heinrich Luebke, and a crowd of officials, guests, and photographers. Villa Hammerschmidt, Bonn, Germany. Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston" KN-C29255 KN-C29255 25 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, Hanau: Arrival at Fliegerhorst Kaserne, address, and inspection of troops and equipment, 10:45AM Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston" ST-C230-28-63 ST-C230-28-63 25 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, Hanau: Arrival at Fliegerhorst Kaserne, address, and inspection of troops and equipment, 10:45A [Note: Scratches and blemishes throughout image are original to the negative.] Please credit "Cecil Stoughton. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston" KN-C29386 KN-C29386 25 June 1963 PT-109 cake presented to President John F. Kennedy by unidentified Army Chefs. Troop Mess, Fliegerhorst Kaserne, Hanau, Germany. Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston" ST-C230-17-63 ST-C230-17-63 26 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, West Berlin: President Kennedy addresses crowd at Rathaus Schöneberg, 12:50PM [Scratches throughout image are original to the negative.] Please credit "Cecil Stoughton. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston" KN-C29217 KN-C29217 26 June 1963 Crowd and cameramen gathered in West Berlin to listen to President John F. Kennedy's address during his trip to Germany. Rathaus, West Berlin, Germany. Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston" ST-C230-15-63 ST-C230-15-63 23 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, Cologne: Kölner Rathaus (City Hall) Please credit "Cecil Stoughton. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston" ST-C231-19-63 ST-C231-19-63 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany Please credit "Cecil Stoughton. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston" KN-C29246 KN-C29246 26 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, West Berlin: President Kennedy addresses Free University, 3:30PM Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston" KN-C29242 KN-C29242 23 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, Cologne: Kölner Rathaus (City Hall) Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston" ST-C230-8-63 ST-C230-8-63 25 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, Hanau: Arrival at Fliegerhorst Kaserne, address, and inspection of troops and equipment, 10:45A [Note: Scratches throughout image are original to the negative.] Please credit "Cecil Stoughton. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston" KN-C29292 KN-C29292 26 June 1963 Trip to Europe: Germany, West Berlin: President Kennedy addresses Free University, 3:30PM [Note: Horizontal streaks are original to the negative.] Please credit "Robert Knudsen. White House Photographs. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"
Collection Opening: Michael S. Reynolds Personal Papers http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/09/collection-opening-michael-s-reynolds-personal-papers/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/09/collection-opening-michael-s-reynolds-personal-papers/#respond Fri, 30 Sep 2016 18:58:37 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=4020 Continue reading

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by Kelly Francis, Processing Archivist

We are pleased to announce the opening of the Michael S. Reynolds Personal Papers. Reynolds was an author and a leading scholar on Ernest Hemingway as well as a professor of English at North Carolina State University.

 

MSRPP-PH-003 Undated Photograph, Michael Reynolds Portrait Please credit, "Photographer unknown. Michael S. Reynolds Personal Papers. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston"

MSRPP-PH-003, undated. Michael Reynolds portrait.
Please credit, “Photographer unknown. Michael S. Reynolds Personal Papers. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston.”

 

This collection consists primarily of research materials and notes related to the numerous books and essays Reynolds wrote on Ernest Hemingway. Also included is correspondence between Reynolds and other Hemingway scholars, drafts of writings, as well as audio cassettes and transcripts of interviews with members of Hemingway’s family and his friends.

 

msrpp-007-011-p0001msrpp-007-011-p0004Page from a listing of Ernest Hemingway’s books at his Key West, Florida residence with notations by Reynolds. View the entire folder here.

 

Reynolds’ interest in Ernest Hemingway began as an undergraduate at Rice University where he received his B.A. in 1959. He went on to obtain an M.A. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (1961) and a Ph.D. from Duke University (1971). After serving in the United States Navy Reynolds began his academic career as an instructor at North Carolina State University, where he later became a professor of English. He published ten books and numerous articles on Ernest Hemingway including a critically-acclaimed, five-volume biography.

 

msrpp-011-015-p0072msrpp-011-015-p0074Notes on Hemingway for a screenplay treatment by Reynolds. View the entire folder here.

 

Reynolds was a founding member and president of the Hemingway Foundation and Society, and was widely recognized as a leading scholar on Ernest Hemingway. He died of pancreatic cancer at his home in Santa Fe, New Mexico on August 12, 2000.

 

msrpp-001-008-p0042Dinner program and menu at the dedication of the Ernest Hemingway Room at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library. View the entire folder here.

 

For more information on the Michael S. Reynolds Personal Papers, please see the detailed collection guide to his papers on our website.

 

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http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/09/collection-opening-michael-s-reynolds-personal-papers/feed/ 0 MSRPP-PH-003 MSRPP-PH-003 Undated Photograph, Michael Reynolds Portrait Please credit, "Photographer unknown. Michael S. Reynolds Personal Papers. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston" msrpp-007-011-p0001 msrpp-007-011-p0004 msrpp-011-015-p0072 msrpp-011-015-p0074 msrpp-001-008-p0042
John F. Kennedy, Conservation, and the National Park Service http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/08/john-f-kennedy-conservation-and-the-national-park-service/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/08/john-f-kennedy-conservation-and-the-national-park-service/#respond Fri, 26 Aug 2016 00:19:30 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=3966 Continue reading

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by Maryrose Grossman, Audiovisual Reference Archivist

The centennial of the National Park Service on August 25, 2016 marks an occasion to consider John F. Kennedy’s relationship with the National Park Service and its goals of preserving natural and cultural resources and making them available to present and future generations. The Organic Act of 1916, establishing the National Park Service, states:

 

The service thus established shall promote and regulate the use of the Federal areas known as national parks, monuments, and reservations hereinafter specified by such means and measures as conform to the fundamental purpose of the said parks, monuments, and reservations, which purpose is to conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and the wild life therein and to provide for the enjoyment of the same in such manner and by such means as will leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations.  (U.S.C., title 16, sec. 1)

 

John F. Kennedy had voiced his support for these ideals before he was President. He was in particular an advocate for water conservation and expressed his position on the matter during the 1960 presidential campaign. He spoke of…

 

…the development of our vital water resources – water to reclaim the land, to supply the power for cities and industry, to provide the opportunity for recreation and pleasure, and to meet the needs of a rapidly expanding population…

 

 

JFKCAMP1960-1031-015-p0001JFKCAMP1960-1031-015-p0001

 

In 1956, the National Park Service issued a report entitled “Our Vanishing Shoreline” that decried the rapid loss of undeveloped and unspoiled seashore and urged the U.S. Government to acquire shoreline land so as to preserve it from private and commercial development and make it available for all. The Eisenhower Administration opposed public land acquisition, but John F. Kennedy answered the clarion call.

 

JFKPOF-109-004-p0027JFKPOF-109-004-p0027

 

President Kennedy’s urgent advocacy of acquiring seashore as public land aided in the establishment of the Cape Cod National Seashore, Padre Island National Seashore, and Point Reyes National Seashore. At the signing of the legislation that established Point Reyes National Seashore in California on September 13, 1962, President Kennedy remarked:

 

The enactment of this legislation indicates an increased awareness of prompt action – and I emphasize that particularly with the population increase and these areas disappearing under that pressure – and the necessity for prompt actions to preserve our nation’s great natural beauty areas to insure their existence and enjoyment by the public in the decades and centuries to come.

 

 

JFKPOF-040-003-p0004JFKPOF-040-003-p0004

 

JFKWHP-AR6733-BJFKWHP-AR6733-B

 

In the White House Message on Conservation, released March 1, 1962, President had reiterated his support for the development of additional National Park Service areas:

 

Last year’s Congressional approval of the Cape Cod National Seashore Area should be regarded as the path-breaker for many park land proposals pending before Congress. I urge favorable actions on legislation to create Point Reyes National Seashore in California; Great Basin National Park in Nevada; Ozark Rivers National Monument in Missouri; Sagamore Hill National Historic Site in New York; Canyonlands National Park in Utah; Sleeping Bear Dunes Lakeshore in Michigan; Prairie National Park in Kansas; Padre Island National Seashore in Texas; and a National Lakeshore area in Northern Indiana.

 

 

JFKPOF-098-005-p0006JFKPOF-098-005-p0006

 

President Kennedy’s efforts to bring awareness and action to the issue of conservation culminated in the Conservation Tour, a 5-day 10-state trip in September 1963, which included a stop for the Whiskeytown Dam Dedication in Whiskeytown, CA.  President Kennedy remarked that with the new dam, the people can…

 

…enjoy new opportunities for constructive recreational use, and new access to open space as a sanctuary from urban pressures. And, of great importance, the flow… can now be regulated for the benefit of the farms and cities in the lower valley.

 

 

JFKPOF-047-007-p0005JFKPOF-047-007-p0005

 

JFKWHP-ST-C310-11-63JFKWHP-ST-C310-11-63

 

Not quite a National Park area in 1963, Whiskeytown Dam became part of Whiskeytown National Recreation Area in 1965.

 

John F. Kennedy was an active advocate for the conservation of public land and resources before and during his presidency. In his remarks at the White House Conference on Conservation on May 25, 1962, he stated:

 

I don’t think there is anything that could occupy our attention with more distinction than trying to preserve for those who come after us this beautiful country we have inherited.

 

 

JFKPOF-038-029-p0006JFKPOF-038-029-p0006

 

President Kennedy’s voice was silenced within two months of the Conservation Tour, but his words still echo the goals and ideals of the National Park Service and all those who have advocated for the conservation of public land for the greater good.

 

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Authority Catalogers-in-Training at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/08/authority-catalogers-in-training-at-the-john-f-kennedy-presidential-library/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/08/authority-catalogers-in-training-at-the-john-f-kennedy-presidential-library/#respond Fri, 19 Aug 2016 21:53:11 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=3846 Continue reading

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by Nicola Mantzaris, White House Photographs Metadata Cataloger

In May of this year, several colleagues began specialized training in name authority cataloging under the tutelage of Jerry Simmons from the National Archives and Records Administration’s Office of Innovation. Early instruction covered the basics of personal name cataloging in NARA’s Description and Authority Service (DAS), as well as core principles of the descriptive cataloging standard that we use, Resource Description and Access (RDA). Our most recent course, an immersion in MARC 21 coding for authority data, has set us on the path to creating new records for submission to the Library of Congress through their Name Authority Cooperative Program (NACO).

Archivists generate and maintain a vast amount of information about the individuals, families, and organizations that created or are referenced in the records in their holdings. Archival authority information constitutes an important part of that knowledge creation and management. At the Kennedy Library, authority work occurs on a regular basis as part of archival descriptive practice. Processing archivists and metadata catalogers contribute person, family, and organization name authority information to DAS – the centralized system through which description and authority records are created, edited, and stored – to be shared and reused by the NARA community. One of the objectives of the RDA and NACO training is to make NARA authority data accessible to the wider information services community. As we learn how to transform DAS records into approved NACO records for inclusion in the Library of Congress Name Authority File (LCNAF), we are helping to realize that goal.

At the time of this writing and following a period of review under Jerry Simmons, several of our NACO records have been published to the LCNAF. One such contribution is the personal name authority for Howard Wayne Warner, a young printing industry executive featured in the White House Photographs collection.

 

JFKWHP-AR7326-AJFKWHP-AR7326-A. Presentation Ceremony of First White House Guide Book to President John F. Kennedy and First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy.

 

Mr. Warner (pictured left of President Kennedy in the photograph above) attended a ceremony at the White House on behalf of Judd & Detweiler, Inc., the Washington, D.C.-based printers of the first White House guide book: The White House: An Historic Guide. In a collection as large and as rich in information as the White House Photographs collection, Howard Wayne Warner represents just one of the many hundreds of people referenced in its photographs. Identifying and describing people in this collection provide both access to and information about the administration officials, members of Congress, foreign dignitaries, military officers, business leaders, religious figures, journalists, scientists, educators, artists, everyday citizens, and all the other individuals who shape the historical record of an American presidency. Read more about the ongoing digitization and cataloging of the White House Photographs collection here.

Authorities perform a variety of functions in an online digital collection environment. In the Kennedy Library digital archives, authorities establish the preferred form of an individual’s name for consistent use across archival descriptions. They are the standardized names that pop up in a drop-down list when typing in a keyword search.

 

 

Maintained as separate records, authorities are linked to various types of descriptive records (a digitized photograph, a folder of textual documents, or a collection’s finding aid) during the cataloging process. They facilitate the search, browse, and retrieval of meaningful results. Clicking on the person name authority for Warner, Howard Wayne, 1931-, for example, returns all of the material in which he appears. Authorities provide connections between different resources within the Kennedy Library’s holdings, capturing relationships among objects, people, and collections.

Apart from their operational value as access points, personal name authority records also contain detailed biographical descriptions, illuminating the broader contexts in which a person worked and lived. If we look at the NACO authority record for Mr. Warner, we can uncover more information about this particular person in President Kennedy’s orbit and identify productive connections beyond the photograph described in the Library’s digital collections.

 

 

The RDA descriptive standard uses new elements to provide a more flexible and dynamic framework for describing persons, families, and organizations. MARC coding is optimized for the linked data world, structuring source citation data to link out to finding aids and other archival materials. In the record above, expressed in both natural language and in MARC, we can connect Howard Wayne Warner to other organizations (University of Maryland at College Park), other collecting institutions and finding aids (Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library and Museum), to geographic places, areas of expertise, and occupations. We can also discover additional biographical information, including birth year, middle name, or alternate names by which he was known.

The NACO record for Mr. Warner is not extensive, but it demonstrates how archival authority data has the potential to open up new possibilities in access and research. Participation in RDA and NACO training will enable the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library to share authority information more efficiently and effectively while increasing exposure to our archival resources. Establishing a name authority can be a time-consuming task, especially when one does not already exist in authority files such as, LCNAF, DAS, or OCLC’s Virtual International Authority File (VIAF), and, more specifically, when creating a fully-formed NACO record. We will reap the benefits of pooling resources and expertise, not only for our users but also for the professionals that serve those users. Our training also sets the stage for incorporating many of these personal name authorities into the innovative research tool and international authority cooperative, SNAC (Social Networks and Archival Context Cooperative).

President Kennedy understood the virtues of knowledge sharing among information professionals. In July of 1963, he spoke to a group of international medical librarians in Washington for the Second International Congress on Medical Librarianship.

 

JFKWHP-ST-320-3-63JFKWHP-ST-320-3-63. President John F. Kennedy Speaks to Delegates of the Second International Congress on Medical Librarianship.

 

In his remarks, the President recognized the challenges posed by an ever-expanding world of medical and scientific advancements, and that access to this knowledge could not be achieved without the diverse group of collaborators standing in front of him on the South Lawn. Click here to listen to the full remarks.

Collaborative authority work brings out the best in what archivists do, which has always been to support the discovery, use, and understanding of the records they collect and preserve. Archivists at the Kennedy Library look forward to completing the RDA and NACO training. In the spirit of improving access to shared knowledge, we will continue to add more records to the Library of Congress Name Authority File in the meantime.

 

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Setting the Stage: Communications Staff Prepare for Presidential Travel http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/08/setting-the-stage-communications-staff-prepare-for-presidential-travel/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/08/setting-the-stage-communications-staff-prepare-for-presidential-travel/#respond Thu, 04 Aug 2016 22:45:48 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=3754 Continue reading

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by Lindsay Closterman, former White House Photographs Metadata Cataloger

Presidential trips are meticulously planned affairs. They require extensive preparation, and for much of the 20th century, this work fell largely on the officers of the White House Army Signal Agency (later called the White House Communications Agency). Staff traveled in advance of the president to ensure that any communications equipment the commander-in-chief required during his trip would be in place. During the presidency of John F. Kennedy, one of the official White House photographers or a member of their staff would often travel with WHASA or WHCA officers to capture on film the valuable, on-the-ground work performed by communications staff. The photos taken during these advance trips offer not only a glimpse into the history of communications technology, but the city scenes, aerial landscape views, and images of people at work and leisure also provide a snapshot of the United States and the world in the early 1960s.

 

JFKWHP-ST-C54A-95-63

JFKWHP-ST-C54A-95-63. Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963.

 

JFKWHP-ST-120-47-61

JFKWHP-ST-120-47-61. Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, 14-16 May 1961.

 

JFKWHP-ST-282-68-61

JFKWHP-ST-282-68-61. Caracas, Venezuela, 15-18 December 1961.

 

JFKWHP-ST-C54A-207-63. Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963.

JFKWHP-ST-C54A-207-63. Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963.

 

JFKWHP-ST-282-84-61. Caracas, Venezuela, 15-18 December 1961.

JFKWHP-ST-282-84-61. Caracas, Venezuela, 15-18 December 1961.

 

JFKWHP-ST-C54A-247-63. Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963.

JFKWHP-ST-C54A-247-63. Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963.

 

JFKWHP-ST-137-8-61. Schwechat, Austria, 3 June 1961.

JFKWHP-ST-137-8-61. Schwechat, Austria, 3 June 1961.

 

JFKWHP-ST-C54A-137-63. Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963.

JFKWHP-ST-C54A-137-63. Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963.

 

JFKWHP-ST-285-5-61. San Juan, Puerto Rico, 15-18 December 1961.

JFKWHP-ST-285-5-61. San Juan, Puerto Rico, 15-18 December 1961.

 

JFKWHP-ST-C54A-208-63. Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963.

JFKWHP-ST-C54A-208-63. San José, Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963.

 

JFKWHP-ST-268-27-62. New York City, 10-11 June 1962.

JFKWHP-ST-268-27-62. New York City, 10-11 June 1962.

 

JFKWHP-ST-282-62-61. Bogotá, Colombia, 15-18 December 1961.

JFKWHP-ST-282-62-61. Bogotá, Colombia, 15-18 December 1961.

 

JFKWHP-ST-282-2-61. South America, 15-18 December 1961.

JFKWHP-ST-282-2-61. South America, 15-18 December 1961.

 

JFKWHP-ST-C94-12-61. Paris, France, 8 March 1961.

JFKWHP-ST-C94-12-61. Paris, France, 8 March 1961.

 

JFKWHP-ST-137-2-61. Vienna, Austria, 31 May-3 June 1961.

JFKWHP-ST-137-2-61. Vienna, Austria, 31 May-3 June 1961.

 

JFKWHP-ST-282-166-61. South America, 15-18 December 1961.

JFKWHP-ST-282-166-61. South America, 15-18 December 1961.

 

JFKWHP-ST-C54A-53-63. Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963.

JFKWHP-ST-C54A-53-63. Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963.

 

JFKWHP-ST-289-1-61. Bermuda, 21-22 December 1961.

JFKWHP-ST-289-1-61. Bermuda, 21-22 December 1961.

 

JFKWHP-ST-C24-32-62. Johns Island, Johns Bay, Maine, 6 August 1962.

JFKWHP-ST-C24-32-62. Johns Island, Johns Bay, Maine, 6 August 1962.

 

JFKWHP-ST-120-63-61. Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, 14-16 May 1961.

JFKWHP-ST-120-63-61. Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, 14-16 May 1961.

 

JFKWHP-ST-C54A-123-63. Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963.

JFKWHP-ST-C54A-123-63. San José, Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963.

 

JFKWHP-ST-282-56-61. Bogotá, Colombia, 15-18 December 1961.

JFKWHP-ST-282-56-61. Bogotá, Colombia, 15-18 December 1961.

 

 

Browse more photos of WHASA/WHCA advance trips:

Glen Ora, Middleburg, Virginia, 2 March 1961

Paris, France, 8 March 1961

Presidential train communications car, 17-20 March 1961

Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, 14-16 May 1961

Commonwealth Armory, Boston, Massachusetts, 29 May 1961

Vienna, Austria, 3 June 1961

Cape Cod, Massachusetts, August of 1961

St. Louis, Missouri, 27 November 1961

San Juan, Puerto Rico, 15-18 December 1961

Caracas, Venezuela, 15-18 December 1961

Bogotá, Colombia, 15-18 December 1961

South America, 15-18 December 1961

Hamilton, Bermuda, 21-22 December 1961

India and Pakistan, 1962

New Orleans, Louisiana, 4 May 1962

New York City and New Haven, Connecticut, 10-11 June 1962

Johns Island, Johns Bay, Maine, 6 August 1962

Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963

 

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http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/08/setting-the-stage-communications-staff-prepare-for-presidential-travel/feed/ 0 JFKWHP-ST-C54A-95-63 JFKWHP-ST-120-47-61 JFKWHP-ST-282-68-61 JFKWHP-ST-C54A-207-63 JFKWHP-ST-C54A-207-63. Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963. JFKWHP-ST-282-84-61 JFKWHP-ST-282-84-61. Caracas, Venezuela, 15-18 December 1961. JFKWHP-ST-C54A-247-63 JFKWHP-ST-C54A-247-63. Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963. JFKWHP-ST-137-8-61 JFKWHP-ST-137-8-61. Schwechat, Austria, 3 June 1961. JFKWHP-ST-C54A-137-63 JFKWHP-ST-C54A-137-63. Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963. JFKWHP-ST-285-5-61 JFKWHP-ST-285-5-61. San Juan, Puerto Rico, 15-18 December 1961. JFKWHP-ST-C54A-208-63 JFKWHP-ST-C54A-208-63. Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963. JFKWHP-ST-268-27-62 JFKWHP-ST-268-27-62. New York City, 10-11 June 1962. JFKWHP-ST-282-62-61 JFKWHP-ST-282-62-61. Bogotá, Colombia, 15-18 December 1961. JFKWHP-ST-282-2-61 JFKWHP-ST-282-2-61. South America, 15-18 December 1961. JFKWHP-ST-C94-12-61 JFKWHP-ST-C94-12-61. Paris, France, 8 March 1961. JFKWHP-ST-137-2-61 JFKWHP-ST-137-2-61. Vienna, Austria, 31 May-3 June 1961. JFKWHP-ST-282-166-61 JFKWHP-ST-282-166-61. South America, 15-18 December 1961. JFKWHP-ST-C54A-53-63 JFKWHP-ST-C54A-53-63. Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963. JFKWHP-ST-289-1-61 JFKWHP-ST-289-1-61. Bermuda, 21-22 December 1961. JFKWHP-ST-C24-32-62 JFKWHP-ST-C24-32-62. Johns Island, Johns Bay, Maine, 6 August 1962. JFKWHP-ST-120-63-61 JFKWHP-ST-120-63-61. Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, 14-16 May 1961. JFKWHP-ST-C54A-123-63 JFKWHP-ST-C54A-123-63. Costa Rica, 15-20 March 1963. JFKWHP-ST-282-56-61 JFKWHP-ST-282-56-61. Bogotá, Colombia, 15-18 December 1961.
Bunkyo Gakuin University Students Research the Ernest Hemingway Collection http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/07/bunkyo-gakuin-university-students-research-the-hemingway-papers/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/07/bunkyo-gakuin-university-students-research-the-hemingway-papers/#respond Tue, 26 Jul 2016 20:15:51 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=3703 Continue reading

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by Stephen Plotkin, Textual Collections Archivist

One of the best things about working in research is having somebody whom you first knew as a hard-working student come back as a full-fledged professional scholar. Professor Kaori Sugimoto Fairbanks first came to visit the Ernest Hemingway Collection at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library in 2000. During that visit and several subsequent ones, she pored over manuscripts, transcribing lengthy passages, on her way to writing a dissertation about Hemingway’s later works.

 

Prof. Kaori

Prof. Kaori Sugimoto Fairbanks and Archivist Stephen Plotkin in the Kennedy Library Hemingway Room, February 2016.

 

This past winter, Professor Fairbanks returned with a copy of her newly-published book on the posthumous works of Hemingway. Better yet, she brought her class from Bunkyo Gakuin University, where she is on the faculty, to visit the Hemingway Collection and to work with the Hemingway manuscripts.

 

Bunkyo Gakuin University students in the JFK Library Mural Room, February 2016.

Bunkyo Gakuin University students in the Kennedy Library Mural Room, February 2016.

 

Professor Fairbanks’s students had read Hemingway’s story “Indian Camp” as part of their seminar at Bunkyo Gakuin. While they were visiting the Hemingway Collection, she had them study his original beginning to the story, which he had ultimately deleted, although he had saved it as he had saved so many of his other manuscripts.

 

Bunkyo Gakuin University students looking at Hemingway materials in the Mural Room, February 2016.

Students looking at Hemingway materials in the Mural Room, February 2016.

 

The rejected beginning attained a new life when Hemingway scholar and editor Philip Young published it under the title “Three Shots” in the posthumous collection The Nick Adams Stories.

 

(Below) Professor Fairbanks’s colleague, Professor Robert van Benthuysen, assists some students with a puzzling Hemingway manuscript item.

Prof. Robert van Benthuysen assisting students with a Hemingway manuscript, February 2016

 

The students selected manuscripts based on their personal interests. Of course, as is traditionally the case, research was conducted with reference copies of the original manuscripts.

 

Students in Hemingway Room

Students reviewing the Hemingway Collection (reference-copied version) in the Hemingway Room, February 2016.

 

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Collection Opening: Clarence J. Martin Personal Papers http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/04/collection-opening-clarence-j-martin-personal-papers/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/04/collection-opening-clarence-j-martin-personal-papers/#comments Tue, 05 Apr 2016 14:41:20 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=3364 Continue reading

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by Kelly Francis, Processing Archivist

We are pleased to announce that the Clarence J. Martin Personal Papers collection is now available for research. Clarence J. Martin (1930-2014) practiced law in Louisiana and served as a member of the House of Delegates of the Louisiana Bar Association. During the 1960 presidential campaign, he served as co-chairman of the Kennedy for President Committee of Louisiana and worked to establish Kennedy for President clubs throughout the state.

 

Clarence J. MartinClarence J. Martin, Co-chairman, Kennedy for President Committee of Louisiana. View the entire folder here.

 

 

CJMPP-001-001-p0020Letter from Clarence Martin and Philip Des Marais, Co-Chairmen of the Kennedy for President Committee of Louisiana, to Senator John F. Kennedy, 14 July 1960. View the entire folder here.

 

CJMPP-001-001-p0047Letter from Robert F. Kennedy to Clarence Martin and Philip Des Marais, Co-Chairmen of the Kennedy for President Committee of Louisiana, 29 July 1960. View the entire folder here.

 

CJMPP-001-001-p0023Charter for Kennedy for President Club in Louisiana, 23 June 1960. View the entire folder here.

 

After the 1960 presidential campaign, Martin was appointed Director of Congressional Liaisons for the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). He later served as the executive director and general counsel of the Association for the Advancement of Psychology from 1974 until his retirement in 1987.

For more information on the Clarence J. Martin Personal Papers, please see the detailed collection guide on our website.

 

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Collection Opening: Edmund A. Gullion Personal Papers http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/03/collection-opening-edmund-a-gullion-personal-papers/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/03/collection-opening-edmund-a-gullion-personal-papers/#respond Wed, 23 Mar 2016 15:25:27 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=3336 Continue reading

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by Christina Fitzpatrick, Processing Archivist

We are pleased to announce the opening of the Edmund A. Gullion Personal Papers. Gullion had a lengthy and distinguished career in the Foreign Service and was U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of the Congo (Leopoldville) from 1961 to 1964.

 

JFKWHP-AR6747-A

AR6747-A. President John F. Kennedy Meets with United States Ambassador to the Republic of Congo (Leopoldville) Edmund A. Gullion, August 18, 1961. View more about this photo here.

 

Edmund Asbury Gullion (1913-1998) joined the State Department in 1937 and crisscrossed the globe on diplomatic assignments for the next three decades. He seemed to have a knack for pulling assignments in international hotspots. During World War II, Gullion witnessed German troops advancing into both Greece and Finland. He was stationed at the American Embassy in Saigon from 1949 to 1952, during the middle of the war in Indochina. And his term as ambassador was defined by the “Congo Crisis,” a five-year civil war surrounding the attempted secession of two of the country’s provinces. As the United States and the Soviet Union supported different sides in the dispute, the Congo was widely considered a frontier in the Cold War. Upon Gullion’s appointment to the Congo, many of the congratulatory messages he received also noted the difficulty of the assignment.

 

EAGPP-001-010-p0077

Letter to Gullion from Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson, July 24, 1961. View the entire folder here.

 

EAGPP-001-010-p0011

Letter to Gullion from Herman Pollack, August 12, 1961. View the entire folder here.

 

Due to his extensive experience in the Foreign Service, Gullion frequently advocated for allowing the diplomatic corps to play a larger role in foreign policy decisions, as he stated in an oral history interview with the Association for Diplomatic Studies on June 2, 1988:

I believe that the President of the United States should know his Ambassadors, at least as well as he knows his generals and admirals, or his cabinet members. I believe that the Foreign Service has an active part to play in the formation of policy. It’s too easy and dismissive to say that it is the executor of policy and policy is made in Washington where all the strings come together. Of course, this is where the fountainhead of policy is but the fountain has deep sources. The Foreign Service officer who has lived with many peoples, encountered many situations, is in the best position to know what can and cannot work in the areas to which he is accredited. I think that he should have constant and frequent opportunities to contribute to policy, to comment on policy.

 

After leaving the Foreign Service at the end of his ambassadorship, Gullion was named Dean of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, where he coined the term “public diplomacy” and sometimes clashed with student activists over the Vietnam War.

For more information on the Edmund A. Gullion Personal Papers, please see the detailed collection guide on our website.

 

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“The Business of Every Citizen”: President John F. Kennedy Stumps for Democratic Candidates in 1962 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/02/the-business-of-every-citizen-president-john-f-kennedy-stumps-for-democratic-candidates-in-1962/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/02/the-business-of-every-citizen-president-john-f-kennedy-stumps-for-democratic-candidates-in-1962/#respond Wed, 24 Feb 2016 16:28:21 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=3239 Continue reading

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by Lindsay Closterman, White House Photographs Metadata Cataloger

In the last few months leading up to the midterm elections in 1962, President John F. Kennedy made several campaign trips in support of Democratic congressional and gubernatorial candidates around the eastern and midwestern United States. We are pleased to announce that all images in the White House Photographs collection documenting these campaign stops are now digitized in full. The photos join already-digitized textual records and sound recordings in forming the official record of President Kennedy’s campaign trips.

 

ST-413-3-62

JFKWHP-ST-413-3-62. President John F. Kennedy Greets Supporters in Wheeling, West Virginia, 27 September 1962.

ST-B452-22-62

JFKWHP-ST-B452-22-62. President John F. Kennedy Speaks in St. Paul, Minnesota, 6 October 1962.

 

Referring often to the Democratic Party as “the oldest political party in the world,” President Kennedy spoke during these trips of the party’s duty in working toward progressive aims on issues that affected many Americans, namely, securing health care for the aged, ensuring equal opportunity in housing, raising the minimum wage, providing access to higher education, lowering unemployment, and supporting the welfare of the American farmer.

 

JFKWHP-ST-464-22-62. President John F. Kennedy Speaks in Monessen, Pennsylvania, 13 October 1962.

JFKWHP-ST-464-30-62. President John F. Kennedy Speaks in Washington, Pennsylvania, 13 October 1962.

 

To a crowd in Monessen, Pennsylvania, President Kennedy addressed critics who may have thought these trips were not the best use of the president’s time. He reasoned,

It is the business of every citizen of the United States to make a judgment about what kind of a House of Representatives we are going to have and what kind of a Senate we are going to have, and what kind of a Governor we are going to have in … all … States of the Union.  [Read full remarks or listen to sound recording.]

 

ST-464-38-62

JFKWHP-ST-464-38-62. President John F. Kennedy Speaks in Buffalo, New York, 14 October 1962.

ST-464-17-62

JFKWHP-ST-464-17-62. President John F. Kennedy in Aliquippa, Pennsylvania, 12 October 1962.

 

In Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, President Kennedy stated that he did…

…not believe that in this most critical and dangerous period in the life of our country that Presidents, or anyone else, should confine themselves to ceremonial occasions, ornamenting an office at a time when this country and the world needs all of the energy and the action and the commitment to progress that it can possibly have.  [Read full remarks or listen to sound recording.]

 

At a rally in Flint, Michigan, the president said that even though he was not running for office at the time, he was campaigning “because I believe the election of Congressmen and Senators who support progressive, forward-looking legislation is vitally important” [read full remarks or listen to sound recording].

 

JFKWHP-ST-464-32-62. Woman Wearing Sash of Campaign Buttons Listens to President John F. Kennedy Speak in Indianapolis, Indiana, 13 October 1962.

JFKWHP-ST-464-39-62. Motorcycle Escort Rides with President John F. Kennedy’s Motorcade in Buffalo, New York, 14 October 1962.

ST-B452-27-62

JFKWHP-ST-B452-27-62. President John F. Kennedy Greets Young Women in Cincinnati, Ohio, 5 October 1962.

 

While it was business on behalf of the Democratic Party that brought President Kennedy to over two dozen cities during the campaign, he was still the president, after all. These congressional campaign photos show not only speeches delivered by a president in support of individual candidates, but also interactions of a president with his fellow citizens. Members of the public came out in droves to see President Kennedy and he was eager to meet them as well, often stopping his motorcade mid-route to greet supporters.

 

ST-B464-8-62

JFKWHP-ST-B464-8-62. Crowds Greet President John F. Kennedy in Chicago, Illinois, 19 October 1962.

 

From the bride in Minnesota who encountered President Kennedy along his motorcade route through Minneapolis (on her wedding day, no less), to the high school senior class president in Lakewood, Ohio, who presented the president with a football signed by the school’s football team, to the New Jersey congressman’s son who had written a letter to the President (and to Premier Khrushchev!) just a few months earlier, average citizens were eager to see their commander-in-chief in person.

 

ST-B452-28-62

JFKWHP-ST-B452-28-62. President John F. Kennedy Greets Bride in Minneapolis, Minnesota, 6 October 1962.

 

ST-464-9A-62

JFKWHP-ST-464-9A-62. President John F. Kennedy Receives Football in Lakewood, Ohio, 19 October 1962.

 

ST-464-1-62

JFKWHP-ST-464-1-62. President John F. Kennedy Shakes Hands with Peter W. Rodino, III, Son of Representative Peter W. Rodino, Jr., in Newark, New Jersey, 12 October 1962.

 

In Chicago, however, in the midst of what would be President Kennedy’s final congressional campaign trip, history intervened abruptly and called him back to the White House; his last few campaign stops coincided with the early days of the Cuban Missile Crisis. Though the president had already been traveling with a cold for some time, he cut his trip short under the pretense of not feeling well enough to continue. The last page for October 20, 1962 in his daily appointment book hinted at the real reason for his sudden return to Washington.

 

Appt book - 20 Oct 62

Excerpt from President John F. Kennedy’s daily appointment book, 20 October 1962.

 

Browse all photos from President Kennedy’s congressional campaign trips:

 

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Collection Opening: Robert A. Wallace Personal Papers http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/02/collection-opening-robert-a-wallace-personal-papers/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/02/collection-opening-robert-a-wallace-personal-papers/#respond Sun, 07 Feb 2016 22:42:49 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=3213 Continue reading

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by Christina Lehman Fitzpatrick, Processing Archivist

We are pleased to announce the opening of the Robert A. Wallace Personal Papers. Wallace was an economic consultant to Senator John F. Kennedy’s presidential campaign, and subsequently served in the Treasury Department from 1961 to 1969.

 

 

Robert Ash “Bob” Wallace, Jr. was born on May 26, 1921, in Cordell, Oklahoma. He received a B.A. in political science at the University of Washington, and a Ph.D. in public administration from the University of Chicago. Wallace became Legislative Assistant to Senator Paul H. Douglas of Illinois and then worked as Staff Director of the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking and Urban Affairs. In 1959, he joined John F. Kennedy’s presidential campaign as an economic consultant. After the inauguration, he was appointed to the Treasury Department as Special Assistant to the Secretary, then Assistant to the Secretary (1961-1963), and finally Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Economic Affairs (1963-1969). In these roles, he coordinated the Treasury Department’s economic forecasts and recommendations to the President, supervised the U.S. Mint and the Secret Service, and served as Equal Employment Opportunity Coordinator for the agency. Wallace was also a member of the U.S. delegations to the Cotton Textiles Committee conference in Geneva, Switzerland and the International Wool Study Group in London, England, both in 1962.

Wallace resigned from his Senate position in April 1959 to join John F. Kennedy’s campaign staff, making him an important early supporter of Kennedy’s presidential bid. Wallace worked closely with Ted Sorensen, Edward M. Kennedy, Sargent Shriver, and Stephen E. Smith, among others, to build national support for the Kennedy campaign. Although initially hired as an economic adviser, Wallace was instrumental in developing the campaign’s grassroots strategy and was soon picked to manage the Kennedy for President Clubs that were springing up across the country. He made frequent trips to many western states to assess local Kennedy organizations and also played a role in West Virginia. After each trip, Wallace wrote a detailed memorandum for Senator Kennedy that assessed the political climate in each state and listed key supporters and delegates.

 

Kennedy for President Club information brochure (page 1), 29 March 1960. View the entire folder here.

 

Memorandum from Wallace to the state chairmen of the Kennedy for President Clubs, 27 May 1960. View the entire folder here.

 

   RAWPP-015-012-p0039Itinerary for Wallace’s campaign trip to Utah with Ted Sorensen, June 1959. View the entire folder here.

 

RAWPP-015-012-p0027Wallace’s notes for a campaign trip to West Virginia, 29 April – 2 May 1960, written on the back of a West Virginians for Kennedy sign-up sheet. View the entire folder here.

 

RAWPP-015-013-p0021Itinerary for Wallace’s campaign trip to South Dakota and North Dakota with Sargent Shriver, June 1960. View the entire folder here.

 

After Kennedy assumed the presidency, Robert A. Wallace was appointed to the Treasury Department under C. Douglas Dillon. Early in 1961, Wallace and other Treasury staffers began to meet with representatives from the Council of Economic Advisers and the Bureau of the Budget to discuss economic data. This group became known as the “Troika.” Each month they prepared a report of economic projections and fiscal estimates that were used to make policy recommendations to President Kennedy. In one memorandum, Wallace described how the three agencies agreed to cooperate in this endeavor:

 

After some discussion, it was agreed that the three functions were too interrelated to be divided – that each of the three agencies had a definite stake in the estimates of the others. Therefore, the group decided that that estimates of expenditures, revenues, and economic projections should be done jointly; and if there were differences of opinion, these would be made clear to the President. This meant that in general all three groups had to move together as a team, thus, the facetious self-reference to the group as the “Troika,” the term used for a Russian three-horse team.

 

RAWPP-002-001-p0050Official procedures for the preparation of Troika economic and fiscal estimates, 31 May 1961. View the entire folder here.

 

RAWPP-001-013-p0004

Draft memorandum by Wallace regarding the Troika’s analysis of employment data. View the entire folder here.

 

After leaving the Treasury Department in 1969, Wallace became an executive at Exchange National Bank in Chicago and was later named Chairman of the Board of National Bancorp of Arizona. He died on June 8, 2001, in Tucson. A detailed guide to his papers is available on our website.

 

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Collection Opening: Lincoln Gordon Personal Papers http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/01/collection-opening-lincoln-gordon-personal-papers/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2016/01/collection-opening-lincoln-gordon-personal-papers/#respond Wed, 13 Jan 2016 01:02:18 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=3180 Continue reading

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by Jennifer Marciello and Christina Fitzpatrick, Processing Archivists

We are pleased to announce the opening of the Lincoln Gordon Personal Papers. Gordon served as U.S. Ambassador to Brazil (September 1961 – March 1966) in both the Kennedy and Johnson administrations. He was known as an expert on Latin American culture, economy, and politics.

 

JFKWHP-ST-45-1-62. President Kennedy and Ambassador Gordon talk in the Oval Office, 6 February 1962. View more about this picture here.

 

The collection contains a wide range of materials relating to Gordon’s professional career in government service, as well as his positions in academia and in non-profit research organizations. The papers also document Gordon’s life-long interest in the areas of business, economics, government, and Latin American politics (with a focus on Brazil) as well as his involvement in a variety of non-profit organizations and associations. Spanning the years 1931 to 2007, the collection comprises primarily chronological files, correspondence, subject files, speech files, photographs, office files, and appointment calendars.

Lincoln Gordon was born in New York City on September 10, 1913 and attended Harvard University, where he received a bachelor’s degree in 1933. Following his graduation, Gordon studied at Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar and obtained his Ph.D. in 1936; he then returned to Harvard as an instructor in government. During World War II and its aftermath, Gordon worked for a number of government agencies in Washington, D.C. and was stationed in Paris and London for several years. He was instrumental in the creation of the Marshall Plan to provide post-war economic aid to Europe. In between these government posts (during the 1950s) Gordon continued to teach at Harvard as a professor of international economic relations.

After the 1960 election, Gordon was appointed to President Kennedy’s Task Force on Latin America. In August 1961 he served as a delegate to the Inter-American Conference at Punta del Este, Uruguay, where the Alliance for Progress program was established. In September Gordon was named the United States Ambassador to Brazil. He remained in this position until March 1966, when he was appointed Assistant Secretary of State for Inter-American Affairs.

 

LGPP-V001-008-p0001LGPP-124-021. Letter from President Kennedy thanking Gordon for his work on the Latin America Task Force, 28 February 1961.

 

LGPP-V001-009-p0001LGPP-142-008. Letter from Robert F. Kennedy congratulating Gordon on his new job at the State Department, 8 February 1966.

 

LGPP-V001-011-p0001LGPP-142-013. Published Alliance for Progress declaration inscribed by President Johnson: “To Linc Gordon, with deep appreciation for your help in making the summit a success.”

 

LGPP-V001-021-p0001LGPP-219-013. Invitation from President Clinton to a symposium on the legacy of the Marshall Plan, 13 November 1995.

 

After leaving the State Department in June 1967, Gordon became the president of Johns Hopkins University. Student unrest and budgetary issues led to his resignation in March 1971. He returned to his scholarly research interests for the remainder of his career and worked at several non-profit think tanks. While at the Brookings Institution, he wrote the books Eroding Empire: Western Relations with Eastern Europe (1987) and Brazil’s Second Chance (2001). Gordon also worked at the CIA on the Senior Review Panel in the early 1980s. He passed away at the age of 96 on December 19, 2009.

A detailed guide to the Lincoln Gordon Personal Papers is available on our website.

 

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Mapping John F. Kennedy’s 1960 Presidential Campaign with Historypin http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/12/mapping-john-f-kennedys-1960-presidential-campaign-with-historypin/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/12/mapping-john-f-kennedys-1960-presidential-campaign-with-historypin/#comments Tue, 22 Dec 2015 23:12:52 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=3159 Continue reading

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by Nicola Mantzaris, White House Photographs Metadata Cataloger

As the 2016 election season gains momentum and we commemorate the fifty-sixth anniversary of the announcement of John F. Kennedy’s candidacy for President of the United States, the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Historypin invite you to answer the question: “Did John F. Kennedy visit your town during his 1960 presidential campaign?”

We are pleased to announce that the Kennedy Library has teamed up with Historypin to create a map-based interface called “Mapping JFK’s 1960 Campaign,” giving users a new way to engage with archival materials from Senator John F. Kennedy’s 1960 presidential campaign.

 

Historypin Collection: Mapping JFK’s 1960 Campaign

 

“Mapping JFK’s 1960 Campaign” is an interactive project designed to encourage visitors not only to follow John F. Kennedy on the campaign trail, but also to make their own connections to the 1960 election year by contributing or “pinning” memories to the Historypin map. It’s free and easy to join the conversation. Simply create a Historypin account and start sharing photographs, videos, and other materials directly from your computer; or, add a link to an image on the Web. Each pin requires minimal information: title, date, and location (e.g., town, region, or street address). Add a personal story or some keyword tags to describe what your pin is about; but always remember to consider copyright and ownership before pinning something to the “Mapping JFK’s 1960 Campaign” collection.

Historypin geocodes digitized content by converting location data into geographic coordinates, which are then positioned onto Google Maps. With Google’s Street View technology, Historypin almost magically brings the past to the present in animated form. If you have an exact address for an outdoor photograph, you can pin it with the Street View overlay and watch the image dissolve from past to present, like this photograph of supporters outside the U.S. Post Office in Madison, Illinois:

 

HistorypinAnimatedGIF

 

For more information, and to watch a how-to video on pinning items to the collection, visit the “About the Collection” page.

The Kennedy Library also encourages you to explore what made John F. Kennedy’s 1960 campaign the first modern American political campaign. Connect with the local history of Senator Kennedy’s campaign by browsing the Historypin map. Witness the enthusiasm of supporters in Columbus, Ohio. Read a letter from an administrator at the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor) who was inspired by Senator John F. Kennedy’s improvised speech proposing the idea of a Peace Corps. Listen to Former Legislative Assistant Myer Feldman discuss the 1960 Wisconsin and West Virginia primaries in an oral history recorded in Washington, D.C. Or, see a schedule of events from the Senator’s visit to Los Angeles, days before he won the Democratic nomination and delivered one of his most famous speeches, asking Americans to meet the challenges of a New Frontier with invention, innovation, and imagination.

 

SWPC-JFK-C003-007SWPC-JFK-C003-007. Supporters of Senator John F. Kennedy Applaud his Arrival in Columbus, Ohio, 17 October 1960

 

UMichLetterLetter to Senator John F. Kennedy from W. Arthur Milne, Jr. regarding “Steps of the Union” Address at the Univ. of Michigan

 

FeldmanOHMyer Feldman Oral History Interview, 3/13/1966

 

ScheduleLosAngelesSchedule: Los Angeles, California, 10 July 1960

 

Like Historypin, many organizations within the archives and library communities are using geocoding tools to provide innovative ways in which their users may visualize and contextualize complex digital collections. “Mapping JFK’s 1960 campaign” comprises only a small subset of digitized content from the Library’s textual, audiovisual, and oral history holdings. By sharing this content with Historypin, the Kennedy Library hopes to reach new audiences and to deliver to its users a different type of experience.

With your help, we can build a national picture of John F. Kennedy’s 1960 presidential campaign and produce a new research tool for evaluating the timeline and geography of this historic campaign. We hope that you will contribute to the history of your town and share your stories with us!

 

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#ChristmasMiracle http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/12/christmasmiracle/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/12/christmasmiracle/#comments Mon, 21 Dec 2015 23:34:29 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=3109 Continue reading

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by Laurie Austin, Audiovisual Reference Archivist and Stacey Chandler, Textual Reference Archivist

Reference Archivists love sharing the treasures in their collections, so when the National Archives’ Office of Presidential Libraries announced a Twitter chat about Presidential holiday traditions, textual archivist Stacey Chandler and audiovisual archivist Laurie Austin jumped at the chance to participate. The #POTUSchat on December 9 was a great opportunity for us to look beyond the few Christmas-themed documents and photographs that everyone knows, and find some hidden gems to share with the public!

 

   JBKOPP-037-008-p0008

 

One question we were lucky enough to get in advance: “How did the First Family do their Christmas shopping?” Until we started digging for an answer, we had no idea – but the first place to look was in the Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis Personal Papers. We hit the archival jackpot when we found this FAO Schwarz toy catalog for Christmas 1961, along with a handwritten note by Mrs. Kennedy about items (and even their page numbers in the catalog) she wanted to order for her children, Caroline and John F. Kennedy, Jr.

A look inside the catalog shows that a great deal of attention went into choosing gifts—and luckily for archivists and researchers, Mrs. Kennedy dog-eared several pages and circled specific toys. What a find! We couldn’t believe we could actually see the selection of specific Christmas gifts, let alone figure out how they were purchased.

But the fun didn’t stop there. Once we knew what to look for, we searched our photo and film collections to see if we could find the gifts in use. That horse and hound set circled on page 89?

 

JBKOPP-SF037-008-FAO-p89

 

We spotted those in Caroline’s White House bedroom.

Caroline Kennedy’s bedroom, 8 May 1962. KN-C21446 [crop]. Photograph by Robert Knudsen, White House Photographs

 

Caroline Kennedy’s bedroom, 8 May 1962. KN-C21450 [crop]. Photograph by Robert Knudsen, White House Photographs

 

That “Busy Box” on page 10? There it is in John, Jr.’s crib in the nursery!

JBKOPP-SF037-008-FAO-p10

 

John F. Kennedy, Jr.’s bedroom, 8 May 1962. KN-C21451 [crop]. Photograph by Robert Knudsen, White House Photographs

 

Admittedly, the big rocking horse from page 13 was pretty easy to spot in Caroline’s room.

JBKOPP-SF037-008-p13

 

JFKWHP-KN-C21505_RockingHorse_circleCaroline Kennedy’s bedroom, 9 May 1962. KN-C21505. Photograph by Robert Knudsen, White House Photographs

 

Of course, we did find a few favorites. Laurie’s is the trampoline from page 86, which Mrs. Kennedy noted the mothers of the childrens’ play group would get for the South Lawn.

JBKOPP-SF037-008_FAO_p86

 

Here we have a sweet photo of Caroline jumping on it, with a brave friend named Shawn Brittle underneath!

Caroline Kennedy jumps on a trampoline on the South Lawn of the White House as her friend, Shawn Brittle, lies underneath. 17 May 1962. ST-A19-41-62 [crop]. Photograph by Cecil Stoughton, White House Photographs

 

And can you believe we actually have footage of an unidentified friend jumping on the trampoline from an April 4, 1963 children’s party on the South Lawn?

TrampolinePPP54PPP:54. Footage by Cecil Stoughton. President’s Personal Pictures.

 

Stacey’s favorite? The “peasant” costume that Mrs. Kennedy circled on page 76 – a pretty fancy “peasant,” if you ask us!

Figure 3 JBKOPP-SF037-008_FAO_p76

 

Check out the photo of Caroline wearing this gift while spending time with her mother and brother in the White House nursery.

Mrs. Kennedy with Caroline Kennedy and John F. Kennedy, Jr. in the nursery, 27 November 1962. ST-A28-13-62 [crop]. Photograph by Cecil Stoughton, White House Photos

 

As reference archivists, our work is guided entirely by the questions we are asked, and we get to learn something new about our collections every day. We’re grateful for the best holiday gift any archivist could as for – a question that led to fun discoveries in our archives!

 

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Visualizing Hemingway: A Man in Letters http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/11/visualizing-hemingway-a-man-in-letters/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/11/visualizing-hemingway-a-man-in-letters/#comments Tue, 03 Nov 2015 23:18:34 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=3095 Continue reading

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by Niall O’Leary, Digital Humanities Specialist (guest author)

EH3541P Kenya, 1953 Ernest Hemingway on Safari. Photograph by Earl Theisen for LOOK Magazine, in the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston.

 

Ernest Hemingway traveled a lot. Really, a lot. Born in Illinois, he first left the United States for Europe to become an ambulance driver in World War I. He returned to the U.S., then went to Canada, then France, and after that his travels really took off. This is clear from any Hemingway biography you might pick up, but it is also clear from a single image; this one:

 

timemap4

 

The map shown above is created using information about the letters Hemingway sent throughout his life. The assumption is that if he sent a letter from a location then there is a good chance that he must have been there when the letter was sent. This map uses colors to indicate the time Hemingway was in a certain place; the closer to red along the spectrum, the older the letter, the closer to blue, the more recent.

This kind of visualization is a useful tool when conceptualizing large amounts of data (in this instance, nearly 2,500 letters). Data visualization transforms many thousands of complex items into simple graphs, charts, and maps that make it easy to appreciate certain aspects of the original objects. For instance, letters are often deeply personal, semantically rich records of feeling, ideas, and personality. Studying even one letter’s content can require specialist skills, while ambiguity, typos and basic individual style can complicate even the most detailed reading. Yet every letter has a set of attributes that once known makes it possible to compare one letter with another. These standard characteristics are a source of relatively unambiguous information and tell us about the letter itself rather than its content. As we have seen, just knowing where a letter came from provides a very important piece of information in itself. There are other characteristics that also illuminate correspondence and by extension the correspondents involved. For example, who sent a letter, who they sent it to, where they sent it and when, are details that allow correspondence to answer a whole host of questions about historical figures and their worlds.

 

A small sample of Hemingway’s network of correspondents

A small sample of Hemingway’s network of correspondents

 

In the case of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library’s holdings, the Ernest Hemingway Personal Papers provide a wide range of opportunities for scholars studying the great writer. Scrapbooks, clippings, letters, notebooks, published and unpublished manuscripts all jostle for one’s attention among the treasures. Just how does one get a handle on so much data? How can one possibly navigate, let alone study, all this material? In the case of his correspondence alone, there are over 10,000 letters both from and to Hemingway and his family. Most of this material is held in its original paper format. Only the most tenacious researcher with a huge amount of time on their hands and working within the Library itself could possibly rein in even a portion of such holdings. Unless they use data visualization, that is. Luckily the Library has documented their extensive holdings in a hugely detailed finding aid available online as a Guide to the Ernest Hemingway Collection. While this document contains detail on thousands of objects, it usefully brings together the most salient metadata in one place. Extract this metadata digitally, apply current technology, and some aspects of the collection can be navigated, analyzed, and understood. To be sure, we cannot answer all questions about Hemingway, but with relative ease we can now provide answers to many queries that in the past might have been beyond our time and resources.

For instance, who did Hemingway write most of his letters to? (His last wife, Mary Welsh Hemingway, received nearly 11% of his letters.) Who wrote to him the most? (His first wife, Elizabeth Hadley Richardson, takes that honor.) Which other writers and artists was he in contact with? (A huge network included F. Scott Fitzgerald, Sherwood Anderson, and Marlene Dietrich among many, many others.) How did the nature of his correspondence change as his popularity grew? (His letter writing peaks around the time he won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction.) Where was he in early March 1952? (Hemingway was at his home in Cuba while finishing his Pulitzer Prize-winning, The Old Man and the Sea.) To be sure, the where, when, and who questions are not always as interesting as the why, but knowing their answers often provides a clue when addressing motivation and cause. To the biographer or the Hemingway scholar, the who, when, and where questions are crucial.

 

The frequency of Hemingway’s letters over his life

The frequency of Hemingway’s letters over his life

 

It was with a view to exploring these questions and seeing how far the barest data might take us, that I developed the website ‘Visual Correspondence’. This site takes the five elements I have mentioned – sender, recipient, origin, destination, and date – and provides the user with a wide range of tools for querying that metadata. Maps, pie charts, bubble graphs, timelines and many more visualizations allow a user to conceptualize thousands of letters through a few clicks. As well as developing these tools, I have also sought out as many collections of letters as I could find and tried to index their metadata. That was how I came across the Library’s excellent finding aid. At the time of writing, I have indexed nearly 160,000 letters from thousands of writers, scientists, politicians, and artists, not to mention so-called ‘ordinary’ people, with correspondents such as Mark Twain, Charles Darwin, Benjamin Franklin, and James Joyce rubbing shoulders with immigrants, factory workers, and civil servants. My hope is that in bringing together so many disparate collections, overlaps and outliers might become apparent leading to new scholarly insights. At the most basic level the site provides a means of finding letters that even the most sophisticated Googling might not bring to light.

So what does ‘Visual Correspondence’ tell us about Ernest Hemingway. Certainly it confirms a lot of preconceptions. That he traveled extensively, had many friends and lovers, and became a cultural icon for the global literary community is clear through an analysis of his network of correspondents. That he was closely involved in his business affairs (he wrote extensively to his lawyer, Alfred Rice), that his various wives were in contact with one another, and that his interest in politics continued throughout his life (there is even some contact with John F. Kennedy) is also abundantly clear. However, the real insights are yet to be found and will require good old-fashioned research, albeit research with a new set of tools. What is certainly clear to me is that without the excellent finding aid compiled by the John F. Kennedy Library none of this would be possible. In his Nobel Prize-winning speech, Hemingway wrote, “A writer should write what he has to say and not speak it”. Thankfully for us, he was a true writer.

 

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Digitization of Photographs from President John F. Kennedy’s Trip to Italy http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/10/digitization-of-photographs-from-president-john-f-kennedys-trip-to-italy/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/10/digitization-of-photographs-from-president-john-f-kennedys-trip-to-italy/#respond Fri, 30 Oct 2015 14:40:23 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=3074 Continue reading

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by Laura Kintz, Graduate Student Intern (UMass Boston)

We are pleased to announce that all White House Photographs from President John F. Kennedy’s trip to Italy in July of 1963 are now digitized in full. They are accessible online through the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum’s digital archives.

 

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JFKWHP-KN-C29263. President John F. Kennedy’s Motorcade Through Rome, Italy.

 

The 92 photographs, covering July 1-2, 1963, document President Kennedy’s only official trip to Italy during his presidency, which came at the end of a 10-day trip to Europe that also included visits to Germany, Ireland, and England. During his time in Italy, the President visited various significant locations around Rome and Naples, delivering remarks, meeting with government and military officials, and greeting throngs of Italian well-wishers. During a time when Italy was experiencing political uncertainty, President Kennedy’s visit represented the United States’ commitment to maintaining a strong relationship with the country and its new president, Antonio Segni.

 

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JFKWHP-KN-C29266. President John F. Kennedy Attends Wreath-laying Ceremony at Tomb of Unknown Soldier in Rome, Italy.

 

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JFKWHP-KN-C29250. President John F. Kennedy Speaks at City Hall in Rome, Italy.

 

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JFKWHP-KN-C29276. President John F. Kennedy Arrives at NATO Headquarters in Naples, Italy.

 

In addition to his state-related activities during the trip, President Kennedy, the United States’ first Catholic president, also had the opportunity to meet with the recently-elected Pope Paul VI. White House Photographs from the visit are limited to the President’s arrival at the Vatican (see below), but a motion picture documenting his trip to Europe from the White House Films collection includes footage of his audience with the Pope and is available for viewing through the digital archives.

 

JFKWHP-KN-C29284. President John F. Kennedy Visits the Vatican for Meeting with Pope Paul VI.

 

One part of the trip that is especially well-documented is President Kennedy’s motorcade through Naples. Among those 34 photographs are many that illustrate the intensity and excitement of the crowds who gathered to see the President. Some candid shots of President Kennedy’s aides and members of his White House Secret Service detail capture the fun of traveling down a Naples highway in a convertible.

 

JFKWHP-ST-C230-46-63. President John F. Kennedy’s Motorcade Through Naples, Italy.

JFKWHP-ST-A7-4-63

JFKWHP-ST-A7-4-63. Presidential Aides and White House Secret Service Agents in Naples, Italy.

JFKWHP-ST-C231-20-63

JFKWHP-ST-C231-20-63. Spectators Watch President John F. Kennedy’s Motorcade Through Naples, Italy.

 

President Kennedy’s trip to Italy represents a significant diplomatic (and religious) venture of his presidency. Although the photographs from the trip were already available for viewing onsite at the Kennedy Library, now that they have been digitized and cataloged, they can be accessed by online users all over the world. Browsing terms, including some newly-created terms, have been associated with each photograph to aid in searching for specific people, places, and organizations. These images can now provide insight into President Kennedy’s travels, to a much wider audience.

 

Browse all photos from President Kennedy’s trip to Italy:

Italy, Rome: Arrival at Fiumicino Airport, and presentation of gift by President Antonio Segni at Quirinale Palace

Italy, Rome: President Kennedy at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

Italy, Rome: Motorcade

Italy, Rome: President Kennedy at the Campidoglio (City Hall)

Italy, Rome: President Kennedy at dinner at Quirinale Palace

Vatican City: President Kennedy at the Vatican

Italy, Rome: President Kennedy at the Pontifical North American College with Jean Kennedy Smith and Archbishop of Boston Richard Cardinal Cushing

Italy, Naples: President Kennedy arrives at NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) Headquarters

Italy, Naples: President Kennedy gives address at NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) Headquarters

Italy, Naples: Motorcade

Italy, Naples: President Kennedy’s departure

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Digitization of Photographs from President John F. Kennedy’s Funeral http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/08/digitization-of-photographs-from-president-john-f-kennedys-funeral/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/08/digitization-of-photographs-from-president-john-f-kennedys-funeral/#comments Wed, 12 Aug 2015 16:17:45 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=3061 Continue reading

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by Lindsay Closterman, White House Photographs Metadata Cataloger

We are pleased to announce that all White House Photographs from the state funeral of President John F. Kennedy are now digitized in full.

These photographs capture a time of great significance and grief in our nation’s history, and they (together with the photos from the President’s final trip to Dallas) are among some of the most requested images in the White House Photographs collection. While they were already available for research, the photos are now accessible online to researchers and users worldwide, along with all of the materials in the library’s digital archives.

 

JFKWHP-AR8255-1H_resized

JFKWHP-AR8255-1H. Jacqueline Kennedy Departs White House for Funeral Procession to Capitol Building.

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JFKWHP-KN-C30750. President John F. Kennedy’s Funeral Procession to St. Matthew’s Cathedral.

 

The 350 funeral photos span a period of three days, from November 23 to November 25, 1963. Events include: President Kennedy’s body returning to the White House, lying in repose in the East Room of the White House and lying in state at the U.S. Capitol; processions to the Capitol Building and St. Matthew’s Cathedral; the requiem mass at St. Matthew’s; the burial of President Kennedy at Arlington National Cemetery; a post-funeral reception at the White House; as well as photos of the newly-redecorated Oval Office with President Kennedy’s effects, the caparison of the riderless horse Black Jack, and a night view of the eternal flame near the late President’s gravesite.

 

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JFKWHP-ST-C422-115-63. Requiem Mass at St. Matthew’s Cathedral.

JFKWHP-ST-C422-11-63_resized

JFKWHP-ST-C422-11-63. Burial of President John F. Kennedy at Arlington National Cemetery.

 

In addition to making the photos available to users all over the world, the process of scanning and cataloging the images makes them searchable in a way that was previously not possible. The metadata for these images enables online users to retrieve images of specific people, such as members of the Kennedy family, administration officials, military officials, heads of state, ambassadors, foreign dignitaries, and members of the clergy. These digital materials combine information found in the Kennedy Library’s collections, as well as in contemporary newspaper articles, books, correspondence from researchers, and firsthand accounts, and they serve to support the continued knowledge-building around this historic event.

 

JFKWHP-ST-C422-110-63_resized

JFKWHP-ST-C422-110-63. Flowers at Arlington National Cemetery.

JFKWHP-ST-C422-33-63_resized

JFKWHP-ST-C422-33-63. Post-Funeral Reception at the White House.

 

Browse all photos from President Kennedy’s funeral:

President Kennedy’s body returns to the White House

Lying in repose in the East Room of the White House

White House, redecorated Oval Office with President Kennedy’s effects

Departure from the White House and Procession to the United States Capitol

Lying in state at the United States Capitol, departure of Kennedy family

White House, State Rooms and floral arrangements

Procession to St. Matthew’s Cathedral

Requiem Mass at St. Matthew’s Cathedral and burial at Arlington National Cemetery

White House, post funeral Reception

Riderless horse Black Jack’s caparison (saddle, bridle, blanket, sword, boots, and spurs) delivered to White House

Eternal Flame (view from the Lincoln Memorial at night)

 

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Serendipity in the Archives: Making Connections between Collections http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/08/serendipity-in-the-archives-making-connections-between-collections/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/08/serendipity-in-the-archives-making-connections-between-collections/#comments Sun, 02 Aug 2015 22:24:20 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=3026 Continue reading

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by Laura Kintz, Graduate Student Intern (UMass Boston)

As a digitization intern at the Kennedy Library, I am lucky enough to work with the White House Photographs collection, scanning and cataloging photos. Through this work, I have learned so much about President John F. Kennedy’s daily activities, the ins and outs of the White House and its grounds, and many other aspects of the presidency. Twice this year, though, I have put my digitization work aside to help with the Library’s Preservation Week program. The current program involves the sorting of condolence mail that was received by the White House, mainly by First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy, in the aftermath of President Kennedy’s assassination. Staff members and interns have worked on arranging the materials alphabetically, so that individual items may be retrieved using the name of the sending individual, group, or organization.

 

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During the most recent Preservation Week, from July 13-19, two collections collided when I discovered a condolence letter with a direct connection to the White House Photographs collection. During the alphabetization process, I just happened to pick up a letter with an attached photographic print of President Kennedy standing with two teenage girls in the Oval Office. In the letter, its writer, a girl from Pittsburgh named Anita Bernstein, expresses her heartfelt condolences to Mrs. Kennedy and describes the “wonderful experience” of visiting the White House with one of her friends and having the opportunity to meet the President. The photo she enclosed with her letter was from that visit.

The letter and photograph immediately piqued my interest. Before I even read the letter, I suspected that the photograph was from WHP. Having scanned so many photographs of the President in the Oval Office, I recognized the room right away and knew that since the photo was taken inside the White House, there was a good chance it was taken by an official White House photographer (it could have been taken by a news photographer, but I thought that unlikely, since the subjects of the photo were everyday citizens). I hoped it would be possible to confirm this by finding the original photograph in our collection. Luckily, aside from being an incredibly eloquent and moving tribute to the late President, Miss Bernstein’s letter was a goldmine of information that provided context for the photograph.

In her letter, Miss Bernstein recounts an event in Pittsburgh on December 4, 1962, after which she and a friend approached President Kennedy’s Press Secretary, Pierre Salinger, and expressed their “earnest desire to meet” the President. She writes that Mr. Salinger agreed to set up a meeting “if we could be in Washington the next day. Naturally we could.” That meant that Miss Bernstein and her friend were at the White House on December 5, 1962. White House Photographs are arranged chronologically, and sure enough, the finding aid lists a folder for that day titled “Visit of two girls from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.” There were two negatives on file for the event, neither of which had been scanned; I pulled both of them, and one matched the copy of the photograph that Miss Bernstein sent with her letter.

 

JFKWHP-ST-520-2-62. President John F. Kennedy with Young Supporters from Pittsburgh. View entire folder here.

 

It was exciting to have confirmed that this photograph that I stumbled upon was actually part of the White House Photographs, because in addition to scanning photographs, I also catalog them, and I knew that this letter would help me with that process. Cataloging requires me to identify, to the best of my ability, the people pictured in a photograph, and to establish as much background as I can for the event or meeting depicted; this information ultimately accompanies the digitized photo in the Library’s digital archives. Since this photo in particular had not yet been scanned or cataloged, I had the opportunity to follow my regular workflow to complete those steps; this was when I realized the true impact of having the accompanying letter to provide context.

When cataloging a photograph, the first priority is to identify the people in it. The first places I check for names are the folder title, the backs of the prints on file, the President’s Appointment Book, the photographer’s log, and the shot cards. In this case, none of these sources provided any identifying information other than “Two girls from Pittsburgh” (the President’s Appointment Book didn’t provide any information at all, probably because this was just an informal meet-and-greet). This letter, therefore, put me ahead of the game because it provided something that these other sources did not: a name for one of the girls.

 

Cataloging resources: photographer’s log, shot card, and back of photographic print


The next step in my research process was to try to identify the other girl in the photo, whom Miss Bernstein only identifies as “my friend” in her letter. Using just the basic search term of “Anita Bernstein” in Google’s online newspaper archive, I found an Associated Press photo published by The Tuscaloosa News on December 9, 1962, with the caption: “Two honor students from Pittsburgh’s Peabody High School hold up charm bracelets given to them by President Kennedy. The girls, Anita Bernstein, (left), and Judy Mankin, both 16, visited the President at the White House. The girls played hookey [sic] from school and made the trip to Washington. They met the President when he was in Pittsburgh on a political tour two months ago and Kennedy remembered them.” Although the scan of the newspaper was grainy, the photo was clear enough that I could tell that these were the same two girls who are in the WHP photo, and it was clear which one was which. I now had names for both girls.

To complete the cataloging process, I wrote a brief description of the photograph. If I had scanned the negative and cataloged the photo without the letter, Miss Bernstein and Miss Mankin may have remained just “two girls from Pittsburgh.” But from what I learned about them from the letter and the newspaper caption, I was able to identify them by name, and I felt confident in describing them as “young supporters” of President Kennedy, rather than just as “visitors.” Once the condolence mail is digitized, researchers will be able to link directly between this photograph and Miss Bernstein’s letter. As a pair, these two documents have a higher research value than each would have on its own.

This connection between the White House Photographs and Condolence Mail collections is an exciting one. Such a link would be noteworthy under any circumstances, but is even more so because Anita Bernstein’s letter is such a wonderful tribute to President Kennedy and his legacy. Together, the photograph and the letter illuminate the story of two civic-minded young women who were vocal in their support of their president. This story is certainly one that is worth telling, and one that may have been lost had it not been for some serendipity in the archives.

The full text of Anita Bernstein’s letter is available below.

 

JFKCM-999-999-p0001_resizedJFKCM-999-999-p0002_resizedPapers of John F. Kennedy. Condolence Mail. Domestic Mail, Folder: “Bernock-Bernstein”.

]]> http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/08/serendipity-in-the-archives-making-connections-between-collections/feed/ 2 20150715_150117_resized JFKWHP-ST-520-2-62_resized Laura blog ST log (larger box) img006 img007_cropped JFKCM-999-999-p0001_resized JFKCM-999-999-p0002_resized Dispatches from the Archives: My Summer Internship at the Kennedy Library http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/08/dispatches-from-the-archives-my-summer-internship-at-the-kennedy-library/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/08/dispatches-from-the-archives-my-summer-internship-at-the-kennedy-library/#respond Sun, 02 Aug 2015 03:25:44 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=2985 Continue reading

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by Joseph Fretwell, Undergraduate Summer Intern (Furman University)

Undergraduate student Joseph Fretwell recently completed a six-week summer internship in the Digitization Unit at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library, prior to entering his senior year at Furman University in Greenville, South Carolina. While at the library, Joe scanned photos from the White House Photographs collection. He also learned the principles of cataloging archival photographs.

 

Joe scanning_resized

 

A Political Science major and Poverty Studies minor, Joe took advantage of his time at the Kennedy Library by spending one day a week conducting his own independent research. While in the library’s research room, he utilized several of the library’s textual collections, as well as its digital archives, to which he was directly contributing through his work scanning and cataloging photos. Joe describes his experiences in the following excerpts from his weekly journal:

 

Week 3

My third week at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library allowed for more of my own research and work in the library’s archives. I have been working specifically in the research room with the papers of White House staffers like Lee C. White and Burke Marshall. It has been interesting to see how much influence average citizens had on the policy agenda and general discussion within the White House. Big name civil rights activists like Martin Luther King, Jr., Ralph Abernathy, A. Phillip Randolph, and James Baldwin are commonly mentioned in memos between White House staffers. These men also wrote letters to various members of the Kennedy Administration. They weren’t the only ones that the White House got letters from, though. From what I have noticed in my research, some of the most influential letters came from virtually unknown American citizens, from 9-year-old school boys, to aged grandmothers. Before doing this research, I never realized how seriously the White House handled mail from constituents. Perhaps this has changed now, but with regard to the Civil Rights Movement, many discussions between the most influential policymakers in the country were centered on the writings and actions of every day citizens.

Seeing the influence of constituent mail in policy talks of the 1960s has, in many ways, helped me to better understand the legacy of President Kennedy. Politics aside, he was a man who believed in the power of the common man to make a difference in public life. In fact, he often called on Americans in his speeches to seek a better world for themselves and their fellow citizens by devoting time and energy to public service initiatives. It’s been exciting to work with photographs and documents of some of the most powerful and renowned people of the 1960s, but I’ve enjoyed even more the fact that I can see and read about the unknown, sometimes nameless citizens who stepped up and contributed to the collective effort toward the passing of the civil rights legislation of 1964 and 1965.

 

Week 4

In my fourth week at the Kennedy Library, I got started on the second half of my major project. I began to catalog some of the photographs that I have been digitizing over the past couple weeks. Most of my time was spent researching the people in the photos and writing short bios about those who the National Archives and Records Administration did not have complete records of in its system. In this process, I became more familiar with the detail-oriented process of archival research, and I got the chance to learn more about and connect with the figures of the Kennedy era that were not always the most visible, from Secret Service agents to local civil rights activists.

My personal research for the week was primarily within Adam Walinsky’s papers. Walinsky was a senatorial staffer and speechwriter for Robert F. Kennedy. In his files, I’ve found various memos and reports on criminal justice reform and plans for community development partnerships. Many of the major themes of the time have obvious parallels with current discussions on race, poverty, and urban decay.

I also was able to attend an event at the library one evening last week that was focused on the legacy of James Baldwin, a writer and civil rights advocate of the mid-20th century. The event featured a screening of The Price of the Ticket, a documentary about the life of Baldwin. Afterward, there was a panel discussion on how Baldwin’s words resonate today. Panelists pulled sections from his writings and interviews to explain major current events in Ferguson and Baltimore, as well as public policy issues like community-based policing.

 

Week 5

This week at the Kennedy Library, I finished cataloging a series of photographs taken on September 5, 1963 at President Kennedy’s signing of a bill that made the Frederick Douglass historical home an official part of the National Park Service. This process required a good deal of research, as I had to identify and write brief biographical notes for all of the people in the photos. Many of those who attended this event were U.S. Senators and Representatives who wrote the legislation, but there were also several local civil rights activists from groups like the National Association of Colored Women’s Clubs and the Frederick Douglass Memorial & Historical Association. Most of the research I did was new to the National Archives and Records Administration, meaning I am the first person to have cataloged the information for the more local and less-known individuals in the photographs. This made the research more difficult, and I had to dig in old magazines and newspapers to identify some of the people. It was gratifying to know, though, that I contributed to the national database for identifying historical figures.

 

JFKWHP-KN-C23586. President John F. Kennedy Designates Frederick Douglass Home Part of National Park System.

 

 

Week 6

I’ve now finished my 6 weeks at the Kennedy Library, and I’ll start my congressional internship in Washington tomorrow on Capitol Hill.

My experience at the library in Boston allowed me to work with some phenomenal historical documents and photographs, as well as meet a number of people who do important, behind-the-scenes work. One of my biggest takeaways from the internship was how much work and time goes into archival research and record preservation. All of the people I met and worked with, especially my supervisors in the digitization wing, are crucial to the success of the library. The amount of effort they put into preparing materials for researchers and visitors to the library is incredible. Seeing this made me realize just how important their work, and the work I got to help out with over the past 6 weeks, is to an array of people—researchers, students, public servants, and so on.

The documents of the Kennedy Administration, even though just a tiny piece of the many preserved documents of American history, taught me more about current events today than anything I have ever done. Being able to look back at the past through the lens of the White House photographers and through the words of Kennedy’s staff gave me a clear, unbiased glimpse into a time that was really not much different from today. I saw parallels everywhere, from conversations on civil rights to issues of federal oversight to debates over foreign involvement in global crises. This was all important to me, as a person who is interested in policy work in government, because I got to see what worked and what did not. Hopefully, during my next month and a half in Washington, I will be able to bring what I learned in Boston to the table and apply it to issues and conversations over today’s policy issues. Our history matters. It matters to our well-being as Americans, to the direction of our conversations on national issues, and to the routes we ultimately decide to take towards progress. My experience in Boston is one that I will look back on as a great help to my growth as a thinking and contributing member to society.

 

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Newly Opened Collection: Paul Rand Dixon Personal Papers http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/07/newly-opened-collection-paul-rand-dixon-personal-papers/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/07/newly-opened-collection-paul-rand-dixon-personal-papers/#respond Mon, 20 Jul 2015 22:42:09 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=2958 Continue reading

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by Christina Lehman Fitzpatrick, Processing Archivist

We are pleased to announce that the Paul Rand Dixon Personal Papers are open and available for research. Dixon was appointed chairman of the Federal Trade Commission by President Kennedy and served on the regulatory agency for twenty years.

Paul Rand Dixon was born on September 29, 1913 in Nashville, Tennessee. He attended Vanderbilt University and the University of Florida Law School before joining the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in July 1938 as a trial attorney. After a brief period with the U.S. Senate Antitrust and Monopoly Subcommittee chaired by Estes Kefauver (1957-1961), Dixon was appointed FTC Chairman by President Kennedy on March 21, 1961. Dixon occupied this position until January 1, 1970. He also served as Acting Chairman briefly from January 6 to March 23, 1976. After his initial appointment, Dixon was reappointed to two additional seven-year terms and retired on September 25, 1981.

 

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The mission of the Federal Trade Commission is to promote economic competition and to protect consumers by developing and administering federal trade regulations. The Commission investigates such practices as price fixing, restraint of trade, unfair competition, false and deceptive advertising, exclusive dealings, untruthful labeling, and the marketing of dangerous products. It enforces the law by conducting formal litigation against offending businesses, and enables voluntary compliance through educational programs. The FTC is comprised of five Commissioners; one is chosen to be Chairman.

This collection contains personal papers generated by Paul Rand Dixon during his time as FTC Commissioner (1961-1981), including copies of docket case files that track legal proceedings against various businesses. Dixon’s work is well represented in a series of alphabetical correspondence files and another series of subject files. His files contain many speeches to professional organizations and statements prepared for Congressional hearings. Common types of documents throughout the collection include letters, memoranda, staff reports, publications, legal documents, meeting minutes, and news digests. Also included are a number of photographs that Dixon displayed in his office. Please note that additional records of the Federal Trade Commission can be found in RG 122 at the National Archives and Records Administration.

During the Kennedy Administration, many changes were afoot at the FTC. In early 1961, the agency was reorganized to create three enforcement bureaus, and the rules of practice were completely revised. Instead of focusing on individual cases, the FTC shifted its attention to compliance on an industry-wide scale. This resulted in a more efficient and fair operation, as Dixon reported in September 1963. Another new tool was the “advisory opinion,” where a company could ask for a FTC ruling on whether a specific practice was legal or not. This enabled voluntary compliance and proved very popular with the business community.

 

Memorandum from Paul Rand Dixon to Paul Southwick at the White House, reporting on highlights of the FTC’s activities since the beginning of the Kennedy Administration, 30 September 1963. View the entire folder here.

 

After President Kennedy’s assassination, Dixon wrote a condolence letter to Jacqueline Kennedy on the behalf of the entire Commission:

 

Condolence letter to Jacqueline Kennedy, 27 November 1963. “We have not the words for a sorrow so large as this.” View the entire folder here.

 

A happier occasion for Chairman Dixon was the FTC’s golden anniversary in 1965. The agency was created by the Federal Trade Commission Act, signed by President Woodrow Wilson on September 26, 1914. It officially opened on March 16, 1915–making this year (2015) the 100th anniversary of the FTC. Dixon coordinated the agency’s 50th anniversary celebration, which was attended by many current and former employees as well as an array of Washington VIPs.

 

PRDPP-228-005-p0040Letter from President Johnson on the occasion of the FTC’s fiftieth anniversary, 17 July 1964. View the entire folder here.

 

Also in the mid 1960s, the FTC undertook a major investigation into the regulation of cigarettes after a report by the U.S. Surgeon General concluded that smoking was a significant health hazard. The agency proposed adding warnings to cigarette containers and tobacco print advertisements. The recommendations on warning labels were included in the Federal Cigarette Labeling and Advertising Act, which was signed into law by President Johnson on July 27, 1965. Later, warnings on print advertisements were added by the Public Health Cigarette Smoking Act of 1969. These regulations created what is now a well-known phrase, “Caution: Cigarette Smoking May Be Hazardous to Your Health.”

After reading all of the data compiled by FTC staff on the dangers of cigarettes, Dixon wasted no time in applying the information in his own personal life. He wrote to a friend:

 

Your information is correct – I smoked cigarettes intermittently until I read the Advisory Committee’s Report to the Surgeon General. On the day that I read it, January 8, 1964, I stopped smoking cigarettes. It seemed the wise thing to do.

 

The FTC also set up its own laboratory to measure the tar and nicotine content of all cigarette brands. Tobacco companies were permitted to include statements about these chemical levels in their advertisements only if the lab tests corroborated the numbers. Tests were conducted according to strict standards and the results were reported to Congress periodically. The FTC hoped that this information would help customers make informed decisions about smoking, but in 2008, the agency changed its policy to prevent the data from being used in advertising due to concerns over the accuracy of the testing methods (given that smoking behavior varies from individual to individual).

 

Letter from Dixon to Tom Campbell, 9 June 1965, regarding his decision to stop smoking. View the entire folder here.

 

 

 Chart of FTC test results, “Tar and Nicotine Content of 142 Varieties of Domestic Cigarettes,” August 1972. View the entire folder here.

 

In the 1970s, the consumer protection trend only increased. The public clamored for greater FTC regulation of shady business practices such as bait-and-switch ploys and deceptive advertising claims. Complaints flooded the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. Elected officials responded by creating a variety of government organizations dedicated to consumer interests. Although the FTC frequently investigated illegal business practices that harmed consumers, many people thought the agency wasn’t doing enough. The loudest critic was consumer advocate Ralph Nader, whose law students published an investigative report on the FTC in January 1969. The harsh criticism in the report angered Dixon, who believed the attack was unwarranted, and led to animosity between the two men. Still, Dixon knew that the FTC could not ignore the growing consumer movement. As he wrote to his friend Senator Howard H. Baker, Jr. (R-Tennessee) on October 31, 1974:

 

Consumerism is here to stay. My advice to you is that you take a stand for it and mold it so that it will best serve the public interest. Like you, I have always stood for maximum free enterprise and I don’t like regulation, but I have got enough sense to know that there are times and places where this is the only way that the public interest can be preserved.

 

Suggestions for improving the FTC’s consumer protection efforts, from a meeting between the FTC and a group of consumer representatives, 12 June 1970. View the entire folder here.

 

For more information about the Paul Rand Dixon Personal Papers, please see the finding aid on the Kennedy Library website.

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Exploring the White House Central Name File http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/06/exploring-the-white-house-name-file/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/06/exploring-the-white-house-name-file/#respond Mon, 15 Jun 2015 03:31:22 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=2929 Continue reading

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by Corbin Apkin, former Graduate Student Intern and recent Graduate of Simmons College GSLIS

For the past year, I have had the opportunity to work as an intern in the Research Room at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library. Throughout my time doing reference work, I have seen a lot of interesting documents, and many of these have come from the White House Central Name File. The Name File serves as the alphabetical index to the mail that came into the White House during President Kennedy’s administration, housing correspondence between the public, President Kennedy, and his White House staff. The great thing about the Name File is that it allows reference staff to look up specific people to see if they corresponded with the President.

Containing over 3,000 boxes (about 1,300 linear feet), the collection holds letters and telegrams from celebrities and notable figures of the 1960s, many of whom make appearances on the Library’s Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr pages.

 

JFKWHCNF-2577-013-p0023JFKWHCNF-2577-013-p0023: Frank Sinatra’s telegram to President Kennedy, 28 August 1962. Here, he notified the President that a copy of the film “The Manchurian Candidate” was available for viewing at the White House.

 

But my favorite thing about the Name File is seeing letters that ordinary Americans sent to the White House. While looking for a specific name in the collection, staff members get to see all of the other letters housed in the same folder. They reflect public opinion of the time, whether in support of Kennedy or in disagreement with him. We see firsthand what American citizens were concerned about and how they wanted to make the country better. Every folder has something interesting (or even amazing) in it, and it’s always been a pleasure for me to be able to work with this collection.

 

JFKWHCNF-2466-009-p0040JFKWHCNF-2466-009-p0040: This citizen wrote to President Kennedy with a suggestion: an eight-part plan for dealing with the Berlin Crisis.

 

Because this collection is so easy for staff members to search, I decided to see if anyone from my family had sent anything to President Kennedy. Without thinking this could even be a possibility, I looked through the “Api” folder in Box 80, and I was shocked to find that a carbon copy of a response letter from the White House to my great uncle, Judge Benjamin Apkin, was in the Name File.

 

JFKWHCNF-0080-010-p0006JFKWHCNF-0080-010-p0006: The response letter to Benjamin Apkin in the White House Name File, 14 April 1961.

 

Often, this is what we find in the Name File – a carbon copy of a response from the White House, but no original letter from the person who wrote to the President. But there are some important clues provided by the White House to help us find the original letter: when a letter arrived at the White House, it was often assigned a code based on the topic of the letter; “HU” for “human rights,” “IV” for “invitations,” and so on – 62 codes in all. The White House response to each letter was copied, with one copy filed in the White House Name File (alphabetically by the name of the writer), and the other copy, often along with the original incoming letter, filed in the White House Central Subject Files (based on the code assigned by White House staff). The carbon responses in the Name File carry the subject code in the upper right corner, handwritten by White House staff and linking the carbon copy to any related documents in the Subject Files. This system, used by White House filing staff both well before and well after the Kennedy administration, gives archivists and researchers a way to search correspondence both by name and by subject.

I looked up the code on this carbon (IV 1/1961/ST21) in the White House Central Subject Files, hoping to my uncle’s original telegram. Luckily, the system worked exactly as the White House designed it, and I was able to find it the folder titled “IV 1: 1961: ST 21(Massachusetts): W: General” in Box 400.

 

JFKWHCSF-0400-007-p0052JFKWHCSF-0400-007-p0053JFKWHCSF-0400-007-052 and JFKWHCSF-0400-007-053: My uncle’s telegram to the President.

 

On behalf of the Mayflower Warehousemen’s Association, my uncle invited President Kennedy to attend a ceremony honoring the Warehouseman of the Year for the Northeastern United States in my hometown of Williamstown, Massachusetts.

While this telegram might not be significant to most, it greatly affected me. I’m proud to know that my uncle’s telegram, however seemingly insignificant it may be, will forever be preserved in the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library archives. It also made me realize that every single letter in the Name File has significance to someone, somewhere. To me, the Name File is a treasure trove of letters that reflect the time period in many different ways and serves as an important and interesting tool for understanding our history as Americans.

See some other examples of letters in the White House Name File here, or email kennedy.library@nara.gov for more information.

 

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Newly Opened Collection on Early Peace Corps Training Camps in Puerto Rico http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/05/newly-opened-collection-on-early-peace-corps-training-camps-in-puerto-rico/ http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/2015/05/newly-opened-collection-on-early-peace-corps-training-camps-in-puerto-rico/#respond Sat, 23 May 2015 04:32:32 +0000 http://archiveblog.jfklibrary.org/?p=2821 Continue reading

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by Corbin Apkin, Graduate Student Intern (Simmons College GSLIS)

We are pleased to announce that the William Henry Byrd Personal Papers collection is now available for research. The collection consists of materials created during Byrd’s time as Director of the Peace Corps training camps in Puerto Rico, a position he held from 1961-1963, and include correspondence, weekly reports, staff memos, and Peace Corps newsletters and publications. A large portion of the collection consists of photographic prints, negatives, and slides.

 

WHBPP-PH-004William Byrd with his family. (WHBPP-PH-004)

 

William Henry Byrd worked as a high school teacher in Oregon. He was also a mountain guide, and one of his clients was United States Secretary of Defense Robert S. McNamara. Shortly after the creation of the Peace Corps in 1961, Secretary McNamara approached Byrd to head the Peace Corps training camps in Puerto Rico.

 

Staff memos detail the training schedule for Peace Corps volunteers. View rest of the folder here.

 

Byrd’s materials give great insight into what the training process was like for Peace Corps volunteers. Perhaps due to his former position as a mountain guide, Byrd focused on rock climbing and physical fitness as a way to train the volunteers, but training also included activities such as Spanish lessons. Byrd’s weekly reports contain information such as visitors to the camp, community relations, and staff development. The collection offers a look into the Peace Corps that is not always documented, and we can see firsthand what volunteers encountered.

 

Vice President Lyndon Johnson visited one of Byrd’s camps and delivered a speech to Peace Corps volunteers on July 26, 1962. View rest of the folder here.

 

The collection also contains materials related to notable persons. Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson visited Camp Radley, one of the training camps led by Byrd in 1962, and a copy of his address to the Peace Corps volunteers is included in the collection. There is also correspondence between Byrd and Director of the Peace Corps Sargent Shriver, as well as photographs of Shriver with Governor of Puerto Rico, Luis Muñoz Marín.

 

William Byrd corresponded with Sargent Shriver and sent him weekly reports on the Puerto Rico camps. View rest of the folder here.

 

While the collection’s textual materials show us what the training process was like for Byrd’s volunteers, the photographs show us other aspects of the camps. Recreation is a major theme of the photographs, but they also document parties and other activities and offer an interesting look at what volunteers did when they weren’t training. The photographs also include pictures of Byrd’s family and numerous landscapes of Puerto Rico, giving context for the setting of the training camps.

In 1963 Byrd moved back to Eugene, Oregon where he worked as a legal investigator, and later ran the Outward Bound School. William Henry Byrd died in 2008.

 

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