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Newseum Creates Camelot; Nancy Pelosi, Les Moonves & Bob Schieffer Attend 'JFK' Exhibit Opening

By Daniel Swartz on April 12, 2013
Be sure to check out all 45 of our photographs from this event HERE!
PENN QUARTER -- As part of a year-long exploration of President John F. Kennedy, the Newseum unveiled a series of new exhibits today that chronicle the 35th president's life, death, family, and presidency.

And a handful of lucky VIPs and supporters of the 250,000-squarefoot museum were treated to an early preview of the special 'JFK' presentation on Thursday evening, during a glitzy, albeit still intimate, opening reception.

CBS President & CEO Les Moonves (right).

CBS Chief Washington Correspondent Bob Schieffer and NBC News' Luke Russert.

Representing the Kennedy family at the by-invitation-only event was Representative Joe Kennedy III, along with his wife Lauren Birchfield. But the grandson of JFK's brother, former Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy, was joined by a large Hill contingent, including Representative Anna Eshoo, Representative Sam Farr, Senator Harris Wofford, and, of course, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi hugs Victoria Allen (daughter of photographer Jacques Lowe).

As one of the exhibit's premier sponsors, CBS also threw its broadcasting support behind the occasion, with President & CEO Les Moonves and Chairman Jeff Fager in attendance, along with CBS News President David Rhodes and Chief Washington Correspondent Bob Schieffer.

Newseum CEO James C. Duff.

Sally Quinn and Ben Bradlee, Luke Russert, Ambassador Marc Ginsberg, Fred Ryan, and Shelby Coffey were also all there. The guest list read like a who's who of Washington media mavens and political powerbrokers.

But despite the presence of so many famous faces, the star of the night was rightfully the JFK production itself, which consists of two exhibits and a film:
  • 'Creating Camelot: The Kennedy Photography of Jacques Lowe' features intimate, behind-the-scenes images of President Kennedy and his family, as taken by his personal photographer. While most of Jacques Lowe's negatives were lost on 9/11 when the World Trade Center bank vault was destroyed, his estate and the Newseum spent more than 600 hours restoring some 70 images from other contact sheets and prints just for the exhibit.

  • 'Three Shots Were Fired' hinges around the news media's reporting of President Kennedy's assassination through a variety of images and historical artifacts. A particular treat for museum guests are the handful of items on loan from the National Archives, which have never before been publicly displayed, and were with Lee Harvey Oswald at the time of his arrest.

  • 'A Thousand Days' is a film produced by the Newseum and projected onto a massive 100-foot-wide screen that uses original footage and interviews to examine Kennedy's presidency and family life in the White House.

Beyond the unveiling of the new JFK exhibits, the Newseum had added reason to celebrate during Thursday's reception. Indeed, with the gleaming $450 million complex first opening its D.C. doors on April 11, 2008, yesterday also served as the Newseum's fifth birthday.

Former Secret Service agent Clint Hill who leaped onto the back of President Kennedy's car immediately after he was shot.

And in what better place to celebrate than Camelot?

Be sure to check out all 45 of our photographs from this event HERE!
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