2012 Summer Newsletter - John F. Kennedy Presidential Library ...

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Summer | 2012

Personal Papers of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Opened “Everything in the White House must have a reason for being there. It would be sacrilege merely to ‘redecorate’ it—a word I hate. It must be restored—and that has nothing to do with decoration. That is a question of scholarship.”

– Jacqueline Kennedy, LIFE Magazine, 1961




he John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum has opened and made available for research the first series of the Personal Papers of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. This portion of the collection features never-beforeseen historic records from Mrs. Kennedy’s years as First Lady, including material relating to her efforts to restore the state rooms of the White House and her highly acclaimed televised tour of the First Family’s home, which aired on February 14, 1962. The Personal Papers of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis were donated, along with other historical materials, to the Kennedy Library by Caroline Kennedy and John F. Kennedy Jr. “Students, scholars, and the general public continue to be fascinated by Jacqueline Kennedy and the pivotal role she played in our nation’s history,” said Tom Putnam, Library Director. “These new documents demonstrate her work as First Lady, her legendary attention to detail, and the incredible range of her understanding of art, history, and public diplomacy.” The Personal Papers of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis provide new insight into the First Lady’s extraordinary hands-on efforts that led the restoration of the state rooms of the White House, as well as her extensive knowledge of the historic furnishings, artwork, and décor that would set the standard for future presidencies. Highlights of the collection include meticulously detailed handwritten notes on subjects ranging from the overall principles that would guide the P12

What’s Inside New Presidential Recordings Released


President’s Council Reception


Make a Difference Award



HISTORIAN AND PULITZER-PRIZE WINNING AUTHOR DAVID MCCULLOUGH has observed that, “You can’t be a full participant in our democracy if you don’t know our history.” McCullough, who was inspired by President Kennedy in the early 1960s to join the U.S. Information Agency and more recently served as a member of the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award Committee, further asked, “How can we know who we are and where we are going if we don’t know anything about where we have come from and what we have been through, the courage shown, the costs paid, to be where we are?” It is at the Kennedy Presidential Library where those answers are often found. Every year, a quarter million Museum visitors from across the country and around the world learn firsthand how the American people experienced the complex, dangerous challenges of the Nuclear Age; the courageous and noble struggle for civil rights and racial equality; the tense 13 days of the Cuban Missile Crisis when the world teetered on the brink of nuclear war; the thrill of space exploration; and the hope and pride inspired by the Peace Corps volunteers. And it is not lost on those who visit our Museum or the tens of thousands more who take advantage of our free educational and public programs that the history of the 1960s has strong relevance and meaning to the pressing issues that Americans face today. As young students touring the Museum watch footage of black Americans being attacked by police dogs and fire hoses, or being denied admission to a public restaurant or restrooms, they are often incredulous that this is part of their nation’s history, knowing that an African American serves as their President and an African American serves as their Governor. But they are also inspired by the heroic struggle for full equality that is part of their American birthright. Older generations attending