DALLAS, November 23, 2013 — As the nation prepares to mark the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza is looking to expand its collection of oral histories.
The museum launched its Oral History Project in 1989 as a way to bring the events of Nov. 22, 1963, to life. Since then, the museum has grown its Oral History Collection to include more than 1,000 interviews and public programs.
The museum records roughly 60-80 interviews each year, capturing the accounts of people who vividly remember the assassination – from eyewitness to police to personnel at Parkland Hospital where Kennedy died.
“We’re really, really making up for lost time,” Nicola Longford, executive director of The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza, said in an interview. “There are so many people who unfortunately are dying.”
Oral histories in the collection include former Dallas Morning News reporter Hugh Aynesworth; Nellie Connally, the widow of Gov. John Connally, who was also injured in the shooting; and Buell Wesley Frazier, a Texas School Book Depository who drove presumed assassination Lee Harvey Oswald to work on the morning of the assassination.
“It’s just so important that these personal stories and memories cross generations,” Longford said. When a person with a story to share dies, “that’s one story not told and shared with younger people. That’s our direct, tangible link to the past.”
The Sixth Floor Museum is a popular destination for anyone looking to explore Kennedy’s assassination. While interest in Kennedy’s assassination has been strong since 1963, it’s growing for the 50th anniversary, to be marked this November.
The museum, originally opened in 1989, tells not only the story of Kennedy’s assassination and the aftermath of his death, but puts into context Kennedy’s visit to Dallas. That fateful visit was in essence the first stop of his 1964 re-election campaign.
For more information or to offer up an oral history, visit www.jfk.org.
This article is the copyrighted property of the writer and Communities @ WashingtonTimes.com. Written permission must be obtained before reprint in online or print media. REPRINTING TWTC CONTENT WITHOUT PERMISSION AND/OR PAYMENT IS THEFT AND PUNISHABLE BY LAW.