Saturday, August 2, 2008

John Kennedy visits Nashville. What a day!

John F. Kennedy comes to Nashville
This is actually a follow up to my first blog, and features John Kennedy's visit to Nashville.
I saw him twice on this day. Kennedy and a few of The Beatles are probably the most famous people I've had the chance to see in my lifetime.
I was just a young kid but remember that day, mostly just seeing the convertible car pass by
at two locations my father had taken me to that summer day, just six months before Kennedy was shot killed by Lee Harvey Oswald in Dallas Texas. I eventually had a chance to go to the site in Dallas where Kennedy was killed, even going
up to the "Sixth Floor" museum where Oswald pulled the trigger from. Since the Kennedy visit, I have never seen anybody draw this kind of response in Nashville. He was a well loved president in Nashville, and the people of let him know it shortly before his death.
The Nashville Scene featured Kennedy's visit to Nashville in 2003.

Forty Years Ago, JFK Rallied This City And Made It His Stage.
It was a sunny magnificent day as President John F. Kennedy smiled and waved to the crowds along the sidewalk. Riding in a convertible, the young presidents coppery hair shimmered in the sun as the final leg of the motorcade made its way down West End Avenue. People hung from office windows and waved as he passed. Forty years ago in 1963 Nashville was a frenzy of activity because, for the first time since Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1936, a sitting president was honoring the city with a visit. On that busy morning, Kennedy rode from the airport in a motorcade viewed by 150,000 people, spoke to a crowd of 33,000 at Vanderbilt Stadium and attended a lunch at the governor's mansion.
The Banner, the conservative afternoon newspaper, wasn't inclined to exaggerate on Kennedy's behalf, so when it published an estimate of 150,000 spectators along the streets, plus the 5,000 or so at the airport and 33,000 in Vanderbilt Stadium, the staggering number were all that more believable. Nashville's population in 1963 was 400,000, meaning that almost half of the city got a glimpse of the president that day..............
From a May 29, 2003 issue of The Nashville Scene

More Nashville Newspapers and Blogs coming soon. Check out my Nashville Concert Web Site at with thousands of concert pictures taken in Tennessee. I plan to soon add a "Vintage Nashville Newspaper" section, to include featured vintage newspapers from my Nashville Newspaper collection beginning in 1963-Present. Feel free to comment on these Newspapers and the featured News Events.

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