tv The Presidency President Kennedy 1961 Inauguration CSPAN January 24, 2021 8:50pm-9:29pm EST
scrutiny of the new commander-in chief, the line straightened up, civilians and military alike, from the motorcycles to the writers and their western trappings as they all paid their respects to the chief executive. from bright sunlight through gathering dusk and by the glitter of spotlight on this historic day, a cross-section of american democracy had been reflected in face of a great soldier and popular hero, a one-time kansas farmboy whose smile went straight to america's heart, and whose language had the common touch. ♪ dwight eisenhower: the peace we seek then is nothing less than the practice and fulfillment of our whole faith, among ourselves and in our dealings with others. it signifies more than the stilling of guns, easing the sorrow of war. narrator: more than an escape from death, it is a way of life.
more than the haven from the weary, it is a hope for the brave. >> on january 20, 1961, senator john f. kennedy, a democrat from massachusetts was sworn in as the 35th president of the united states. next on the presidency, we see the inaugural ceremonies and oath of office on the west front of the u.s. capitol. ♪ >> members of the house of representatives were preceded by kenneth r harding. this is an indication that it really was cold. ♪ >> representative martin,
speaker and presently representative for massachusetts. senator dirksen, minority leader, and the senator majority leader, lead the members of the united states senate. ♪ former president truman is escorted by senator clinton anderson. former senator from rhode island, theodore green. robert kennedy was to be the next attorney general. ♪ ted kennedy, another brother of the president to be.
>> the joint congressional inaugural committee having escorted, now seat the presidential parties on the platform. [applause] [cheers] >> mr. president, mr. vice president, distinguished guests and fellow citizens of this great representative republic, we are here today to inaugurate the 35th president of this union of free people. it is my high honor to begin this event by presenting the
[applause] >> will the audience now rise as his eminence, richard kushing, announces the invocation. >> in the name of the father, and of the son, and of the holy ghost, amen. in this year of our lord, 1961, we ask thee almighty god to enlighten us and we may know as men our personal responsibility. and we may know as americans our political, social and humanitarian responsibility. and we may know as citizens of the world our global responsibilities to ourselves and our fellow man. that we may know as children of
god our responsibilities to the father of mankind. enlighten us, oh lord, that we may know how to combine all of these responsibilities into a continuing principle of responsibility. >> and now ms. marion anderson will sing our national anthem, "the star spangled banner," accompanied by the united states marine band. ♪ >> ♪ o say, can you see by the ♪ >> ♪ o say, can you see by the
dawn's early light, what so proudly we hailed at the twilight's last gleaming? whose broad stripes and bright stars through the perilous fight o'er the ramparts we watched were so gallantly streaming? and the rockets' red glare the bombs bursting in air, gave proof through the night that our flag was still there. oh, say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave, o'er the land of the free,
and the home of the brave? ♪ [applause] >> his eminence, archbishop iakabus, will now lead us in prayer. >> in the name of the father, and of the son, and of the holy ghost, amen. almighty and all merciful lord, by whom all powers and authorities are ordained, who taught us that rulers are ministers of god to us for all that is good. who demands of us that we offer supplications, prayers,
intersessions and thanksgiving for all who are in authority, hear us, oh lord, for that we, bow and inclining our heads beseech they mercy upon the faithful servant, our beloved president, john fitzgerald kennedy. >> the speaker of the house of representatives will now administer the oath of office to the vice president-elect. [applause] ♪
>> will you repeat after me. i, lyndon baines johnson. vice president-elect johnson: i, lyndon baines johnson. >> do solemnly swear. vice president-elect johnson: do solemnly swear. >> that i will support and defend the constitution of the united states against all enemies, foreign and domestic. vice president-elect johnson: that i'll support and defend the constitution of the united states against all enemies foreign and domestic. >> that i'll bear true faith and allegiance to the same. vice president-elect johnson: that i will bear true faith and allegiance to the same. >> i take this obligation freely. vice president-elect johnson: i take this obligation freely without any reservation whatever. >> i will faithfully discharge the duties of the office upon which i am about to enter, so help me god. vice president-elect johnson:
that i will faithfully discharge the duties of the office of which i'm about to enter, so help me god. [cheers] [applause] >> the reverend dr. john barkley will now lead us in prayer. >> let us pray. eternal god, our father, we pause again to acknowledge that in thy presence we are living and moving, and in thee alone we have our being. we are thankful for the great and good men raised up by thee to lead us in the past. bless these leaders of recent decades still with us, who have led us through these tumultuous times. to live out their years with the consciousness of the admiration and appreciation of a grateful
people. >> now i have the honor to present one of america's most distinguished poets, who will deliver an original composition, mr. robert frost. [applause] >> robert frost, one of america's great living poets, gave from memory one of his own poems entitled "gift outright." >> the oath of office will now be administered to the president-elect by the chief justice of the united states.
♪ >> you, john fitzgerald kennedy, do solemnly swear. president-elect kennedy: i, john fitzgerald kennedy, do solemnly swear. >> that you will faithfully execute the office of the president of the united states. president-elect kennedy: that i will faithfully execute the office of president of the united states. >> and will to the best of your ability. president-elect kennedy: and will to the best of my ability. >> preserve, protect and defend the constitution of the united states. president-elect kennedy: preserve, protect and defend the constitution of the united states. >> so help you, god. president-elect kennedy: so help me, god. [cheers] [applause]
president kennedy: vice president johnson, mr. speaker, mr. chief justice, president eisenhower, vice president nixon, president truman, reverend clergy, fellow citizens, we observe today not a victory of party, but a celebration of freedom, symbolizing an end as well as a beginning, signifying renewal as well as change. for i have sworn before you and almighty god the same solemn oath our forebearers prescribed
nearly a century and three quarters ago. the world is very different now. for man holds in his mortal hands the power to abolish all forms of human poverty and all forms of human life. and yet, the same revolutionary beliefs, for which our forebears fought, are still at issue around the globe. the belief that the rights of man come not from the generosity of the state, but from the hand of god. we dare not forget today, that we are the heirs of that first revolution. let the word go forth from this time and place, to friend and foe alike, that the torch has been passed to a new generation of americans born in this
century, tempered by war, disciplined by a hard and bitter peace, proud of our ancient heritage and unwilling to witness or permit the slow undoing of those human rights to which this nation has always been committed, and to which we are committed today at home and around the world. [cheers] president kennedy: let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, to assure the survival and success
of liberty. [cheers] this much we pledge and more. to those old allies whose cultural and spiritual origins we share, we pledge the loyalty of faithful friends. united, there is little we cannot do, in a host of cooperative ventures. divided there is little we can do. for we dare not meet a powerful challenge at odds and split asunder. to those new states, we welcome to the ranks of the free, we pledge our word that one form of colonial control shall not have passed away merely to be
replaced by a far more iron tyranny. we shall not always expect to find them supporting our views, but we shall always hope to find them strongly supporting their own freedom. and to remember that, in the past, those who foolishly sought power by riding the back of the tiger, ended up inside. [applause] to those people in the huts and villages of half the globe, struggling to break the bonds of mass misery, we pledge our best efforts to help them help themselves. for whatever period it requires, not because the communists may be doing it, not because we seek their votes, but because it is right. if a free society cannot help
the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich. [applause] to our sister republic, south of our border, we offer a special pledge. to convert our good words into good deeds. in a new alliance for progress, to assist free men and free governments, in casting off the chains of poverty. but this peaceful revolution of hope cannot become the prey of hostile powers. let all our neighbors know, that we shall join with them, to oppose aggression or subversion anywhere in the americas. and let every other power know, that this hemisphere intends to remain the master of its own house. [cheers]
to that world assembly of sovereign states, the united nations, our last best hope, in an age where the instruments of war have far outpaced the instruments of peace, we renew our pledge of support to prevent it from becoming merely a formum for invective, to strengthen its shield of the weak, and to enlarge the area in which its writ may run. finally, to those nations that would make themselves our adversary, we offer not a pledge but a request. that both sides begin anew the quest for peace. before the dark powers of destruction unleashed by science engulf all humanity in planned or accidental self-destruction.
we dare not tempt them with weakness. for only when our arms are sufficient beyond doubt can we be certain beyond doubt that they will never be employed. but neither can two great and powerful groups of nations take comfort from our present course. both sides overburdened by the cost of modern weapons. both rightly alarmed by the steady spread of the deadly atom, yet both racing to order that uncertain balance of terror that stays the hand of mankind's final war. so, let us begin anew. remembering, on both sides, that civility is not a sign of weakness, and sincerity is always subject to proof. let us never negotiate out of fear.
but let us never fear to negotiate. [cheers] [applause] let both sides explore what problems unite us, instead of belaboring those problems that divide us. let both sides for the first time formulate serious and precise proposals for the inspection and control of arms. and bring the absolute power to destroy other nations under the absolute control of all nations. [applause] let both sides seek to invoke the wonders of science instead of its terrors. together let us explore the stars, conquer the desert, eradicate disease, cap the ocean
depths, and encourage the arts and commerce. let both sides unite to head in -- heed, in all corners of the earth the command of isaiah to undo the heavy burden and let the oppressed go free. and if a beachhead of cooperation may push back the jungle of suspicion, let both sides join in creating a new endeavor. not a new balance of power, but a new world of law, where the strong are just, and the weak secure, and the peace preserved. all this will not be finished in the first 100 days. nor will it be finished in the first 1000 days. nor in the life of this administration. nor even perhaps in our lifetimes on this planet.
but let us begin. [applause] in your hands, my fellow citizens, more than mine, will rest the final success or failure of our cause. since this country was founded, each generation of americans has been summoned to give testimony to its national loyalties. the grace of young americans who answered the call to service surrounds the globe. now the trumpet summons us again. not as a call to bear arms, though arms we need, not as a call to battle, though in battle we are, but a call to bear the burden of a long twilight
struggle, year in and year out. rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, a struggle against the common enemies of man. tyranny, poverty, disease, and war itself. can we forge, against these enemies, a grand and global alliance? north and south, east and west, that can assure a life for all -- a more fruitful life for all mankind. will you join in that historic effort? [cheers] in the long history of the world, only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in its hour of maximum danger. i do not shrink from this responsibility. i welcome it. [cheers]
i do not believe that any of us would exchange places with any other people or any other generation. the energy, the faith, the devotion, which we bring to this endeavor, will light our country and all who serve it. and the glow from that fire can truly light the world. and so, my fellow americans, ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country. [cheers] my fellow citizens of the world, ask not what america will do for you, but what together we can do for the freedom of man.
>> whether you are citizens of america or citizens of the world , ask of us here the same high standards of strength and sacrifice, which we ask of you. with a good conscience our only sure reward, with history the final judge of our deeds, let us go forth to lead the land we love, asking his blessing and his help. but knowing that here on earth, god's work must truly be our own. [applause] [cheers and applause]
jacqueline kennedy. and the democrat harry truman all hasten to the supreme court chamber for lunch. ♪ as is customary, the joint congressional inaugural committee provides a luncheon in the historic old supreme court chamber in the capitol. the invitation list comprises a notable array of leaders in and out of government to congratulate the new presidential family. ♪ the chefs uncover the chafing dishes. the head table is laid out in readiness for the hungry dignitaries. the center motif on the table is an american eagle, carved from ice. ♪ in the serving line, we see senator bridges of new
hampshire, the sergeant at arms of the senate, and a senator from massachusetts, a former colleague of the president when he was in the senate. a senator from washington. a senator from florida. bobby baker, the secretary to the majority. senator hubert humphrey of minnesota. ♪ henry wallace, former vice president of the united states. robert frost, the poet. the majority and majority -- and minority leaders of the senate -- the majority and minority leaders of the senate were only a few of the many notables. the new chief executive and his wife leave the capital,
accompanied by the chairman of the joint congressional inaugural committee to enter the awaiting sedan that will now leave the inaugural caravan to the reviewing stand in front of the white house. ♪ immediately behind is the vice president and his wife. down historic pennsylvania avenue, the caravan proceeds. this trip is symbolic of the ascension to power of the new administration as the reins of government change hands. ♪ the president waves to his proud parents. the chief justice warren. former president truman and his family. ♪
the three united states military academies, representing the best of american men, are led by the cadets from west point, all seem to play vital roles as military leaders to come -- all soon to play vital roles as military leaders. ♪ the future officers follow next, cadets from the air force academy. ♪
from the naval academy, leaders from the years ahead. ♪ for many hours, the endless parade of marchers pass in review before the new leaders of our land. the president and vice president stand for them all. once a naval officer himself with a distinguished war record, the president watches with heightened interest as the navy band passes in review. here are two men, who laid one of the greatest nations on earth in its most trying era, fraught with peril, where men struggle for freedom, challenged by a godless tyranny. the leaders of a nation that symbolizes man's right to the determination of who shall govern him.