Friday, November 22, 2013
November 22, 2013: The 50th Anniversary of the Assassination of President John F. Kennedy
On November 22, 1963, in Dallas, Texas, President John F. Kennedy was assassinated by a Lee Harvey Oswald, a lone gunman. On that Friday afternoon, as Kennedy rode through downtown Dallas in an open limousine, Oswald fired three shots from a bolt-action rifle while perched in an upper floor of the Texas School Book Depository Building, hitting Kennedy twice, one being a fatal head shot.
Above: JFK, Jackie Kennedy, and Texas Governor John Connnally in the open-top Presidential limousine; A frame from the the Zapruder Film showing JFK being hit in the neck.
In November 1963, President Kennedy, First Lady Jackie Kennedy, Vice President Lyndon Johnson and Mrs. Johnson made a political trip to Texas. In Dallas, on Friday afternoon, November 22, 1963, President Kennedy and Mrs. Kennedy traveled in a large motorcade in an uncovered limousine. Texas Governor John Connally and his wife rode with the first couple.
At Dealey Plaza, yards from the Texas Schoolbook Depository Building, three shots rang out, with two of them hitting the president. Governor Connally was hit by one of the same bullets that hit President Kennedy. In the second photo above, the moment is captured in which President Kennedy and Governor Connally were hit by the same bullet. The third shot hit President Kennedy in the head, and he died a short time later at Parkland Hospital in Dallas. Governor Connally survived his wounds.
Despite decades of conspiracy theories, the most sound evidence indicates that the shooter was Lee Harvey Oswald, a twenty-four year old aspiring pro-Castro Marxist political activist who worked in the Texas Schoolbook Depository Building. While trying to escape, Oswald also shot and killed a Dallas police officer. Shortly after, Dallas law enforcement captured and arrested Oswald.
Two days later, a Dallas nightclub owner named Jack Ruby shot and killed Oswald as Oswald was being transferred to another jail. Ruby's actions have inspired many a conspiracy theory, but the preponderance of evidence indicates that Oswald was acting alone when he shot JFK, and moreover, Jack Ruby was acting alone when he shot Oswald.
In the wake of the Kennedy assassination, President Lyndon Johnson assembled a high-profile group, led by U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice Earl Warren to investigate the assassination. The Warren Commission concluded that Oswald acted alone, as did Jack Ruby.
Above: Snapshot of Lee Harvey Oswald with his rifle in 1963; Oswald Mugshot, November 23, 1963
AL.com: In Alabama, Reactions to the JFK Assassination Were Varied
A Chronicle of the 1960s