March 1, 2012
JACQUELINE KENNEDY, HISTORIC CONVERSATIONS, THE SECOND CONVERSATION IV
Knoxville, Tennessee (JFK+50) Today JFK+50 concludes our report on the second conversation from “Jacqueline Kennedy, Historic Conversations on Life with John F. Kennedy”, published by Hyperion.
The second conversation was recorded on March 3, 1964.
Jacqueline Kennedy discusses campaigning in the Wisconsin & West Virginia Democratic primaries of 1960.
Mrs. Kennedy says that JFK enjoyed campaigning, but not perhaps as much as LBJ who later would tell Bobby that it was his favorite thing to do in life.
“(Jack) loved the people who were really glad to see him–the little old ladies, or (the) children.”
Apparently, campaigning in Wisconsin, however, was not fun & games.
Mrs. Kennedy recalls:
“We’d go into a ten cent store (with) 3 people in it & they’d back against the…wall. They wouldn’t want to shake your hand.”
“People would stare at you like sort of animals….they’re so suspicious of anyone sort of gregarious. I never met one person in Wisconsin I did like, except for the people who were working for Jack.”
Mrs. Kennedy is more complimentary of West Virginians….
“The people (of West Virginia) were so friendly. There could be a mother nursing a baby on a rotting front porch, but she’d smile & say ‘Won’t you come in?'”
“I never met one person in West Virginia I didn’t like.”*
*The Kennedy Library writes:
“The people of West Virginia–their kindness & fairness, their grit & determination & patriotism–made their mark on (JFK) & helped to shape the President he would become.”
In regard to going out among the people as President, Mrs. Kennedy says that it was good for him. She says he would comment on how good it was to get out of Washington, D.C.
“It was good for him to get away & see that he was adored.”