John F. Kennedy turns 100 this year. Museums and libraries across the country reflect on his presidency.

President John F. Kennedy greets a large crowd at a rally in Fort Worth, Texas, on the morning of Nov. 22, 1963, the day of his assassination. Museums and libraries across the country are marking Kennedy's 100th birthday.
(Cecil Stoughton/ EPA/ John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum)

John F. Kennedy was born May 29, 1917, in Brookline, Mass. At 43, he would become America’s youngest elected president, a leader who excited and motivated a new generation of voters.

Kennedy’s assassination in Dallas in 1963 shocked the nation and the world. It continues to be an enduring touchstone for anyone who “remembers where they were” when they heard the news.

In Kennedy’s centennial year, the former president and his family are remembered at museums and events across the nation.

John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum

The president’s library in Boston planned centennial celebrations all weekend. The public is invited to a birthday party at 9 a.m. Monday, complete with cake and free admission.

The U.S. Naval Band and a flyover by the U.S. Navy (Kennedy served as a Navy officer during World War II) are part of the planned celebrations.

The library has an online photo collection of the lavish 1961 party at the National Guard Armory in Washington, D.C., which celebrated the president’s 44th birthday.

By the way, don’t confuse this bash with the one at which Marilyn Monroe sang a breathy birthday song to the president. That took place in May 1962 at Madison Square Garden in New York City when he turned 45.

The library also will open an exhibition called “JFK 100: Milestones & Mementos.”

“JFK 100 Centennial Celebration” at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Columbia Point, Boston; (617) 514-1600

John F. Kennedy Hyannis Museum

“If These Walls Could Talk” by artist Jackie Reeves features portraits made from castoffs of the Hyannis Port home of President Kennedy. (Jackie Reeves)

The Kennedys are known for their compound at Hyannis Port on Cape Cod. Nothing can be more compelling than a show based on this connection called “Artwork Inspired by a Presidential Home.”

This museum in Hyannis engaged local artists to make works of art from shingles, wallpaper, windows and other materials that were gathered from the 2013 renovation of a home on the Kennedy compound where John and Jackie once lived.

“Jack” and “Jackie” by Richard Neal. Neal used such diverse materials as kitchen cupboard shelf sections and a doorbell with wiring for his portrait of “Jack.” (Richard Neal)

The result is a diverse and interesting mix of mixed media, wall art, sculptures and other items. Some pieces will be for sale at an Aug. 7 auction.

The museum also is featuring an exhibition called “JFK at 100: Life & Legacy.”

Info: John F. Kennedy Hyannis Museum, 397 Main St, Hyannis, Mass.;


This photo of John F. Kennedy was taken at a 1959 press conference in Omaha, Neb. Jacqueline Kennedy later chose this image for her husband’s memorial card. (Estate of Jacques Lowe)

This museum is bringing back an exhibition in time for Kennedy’s centennial called “Creating Camelot: The Kennedy Photography of Jacques Lowe.”

Lowe was Kennedy’s photographer from his earliest days in the White House. The exhibit, which first appeared at the museum in 2013, features 70 photos of Kennedy and his family.

The exhibit (currently at the Boothe Western Art Museum in Cartersville, Ga.) will open at the Newseum on Sept. 29 and continue through Jan. 7.

Info: Newseum, 555 Pennsylvania Ave., N.W., Washington, D.C.,

Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery

John F. Kennedy by Shirley Seltzer Cooper, pastel, 1961. (National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; gift of Ted Cooper)

The pastel portrait of Kennedy by Shirley Seltzer Cooper is on display at the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C. It will remain in the first-floor gallery through July 9.

It’s part of a larger “America Now” program that will feature JFK100 events at the National Museum of American History and the Smithsonian American Art Museum from June 17 to July 1.

Info: Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, 8th and F streets, Washington, D.C.;


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