Online Collection

Jack Jernigan film

Object Number: 1998.028.0001
Category: Films
Photographer: A.J. Jernigan
Type of Object: Film, 8mm
Dimensions: Gauge: 8mm; Camera Speed: 16 fps
Medium: Film
8mm color film made by Jack Jernigan on November 22, 1963 near the Dallas Love Field airport exit. He filmed Air Force Two and One arriving, then much of the motorcade passing by. Of special interest is that, at this early moment, Jacqueline Kennedy was wearing sunglasses which President Kennedy soon requested that she remove.

Jernigan then drove to the Dallas Trade Mart hoping to see President Kennedy's arrival there, only to learn about the assassination on his car radio. His last filmed scene shows the flag at half-staff at the Dallas Veterans Hospital where he worked.

Curator's Notes

Dr. A. Jack Jernigan, who was chief psychologist at the Dallas Veterans Hospital, recorded an oral history with the Museum on August 16, 2007. He passed away on March 9, 2008. In 2006, Jernigan self-published his autobiography, Seeking the Best: A Psychologist's Service to Veterans. It includes a chapter on his memories of the Kennedy assassination, his film, and the aftermath. His book is available for research in the Museum's Reading Room. - Stephen Fagin, Curator

The Jack Jernigan film and another home movie in the Museum’s collection, made by Keith Griffith, are the only known images of Jackie Kennedy wearing sunglasses that day in Dallas.  

According to Mr. and Mrs. John Connally, in their 1978 testimony before the House Select Committee on Assassinations, the sun was so bright that Jackie donned her shades as the motorcade began to move.  President Kennedy, who was quite image-conscious (as was Jackie) thought her “look” was inappropriate and politely asked her to take them off.  She ignored him.  Moments later, after noticing she still wore her sunglasses, he made it clear to her in no uncertain terms that they should come off.  Jackie then complied.  I have yet to see any pictures past the entrance to Dallas Love Field showing Jackie still wearing those glasses. - Gary Mack, Curator

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