Little Rock Culture Vulture

Cultural events, places and people in the Little Rock area

JFK in LR and other parts of ARK

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JFK LROn October 3, 1963, President John F. Kennedy delivered remarks at the Arkansas State Fairgrounds.  Only a few weeks later, he would be felled by an assassins bullet in Texas.

In the speech, the President praised Arkansas’ congressional delegation including Senators John McClellan and J. William Fulbright and Congressmen Took Gathings, Bill Trimble, Wilbur Mills and Oren Harris.  Each of these men held senior leadership positions in key committees.  The main focus of the speech was to discuss President Kennedy’s vision for a new economy in the South.

The President was actually in the state to speak at the dedication of the Greers Ferry Dam. He agreed to make that appearance as a part of a negotiation with Congressman Mills as they were deadlocked over changes to the tax code.  He had previously visited Little Rock in 1957 when he came to the state to address the Arkansas Bar Association meeting in Hot Springs.

President Kennedy continued the string of 20th Century Presidents to visit Little Rock.  Presidents Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, Franklin Roosevelt and Harry Truman had all visited while in office.  Woodrow Wilson, Herbert Hoover and Dwight Eisenhower all visited prior to attaining the presidency.

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Author: Scott

A cultural thinker with a life long interest in the arts and humanities: theatre, music, architecture, photography, history, urban planning, etc.

One thought on “JFK in LR and other parts of ARK

  1. One of my strongest memories – my father checked us out of school and took us to see President Kennedy at the Arkansas State Fairgrounds. I was 6 years old and he held me on his shoulders so I could see the President!