The Kennedy Family’s Last Public Appearance Together

The President and Mrs. Kennedy with their children Caroline and John, Jr. listening and watching to the Black Watch Highlanders, the Scottish bagpipers, perform on the White House South Lawn, November 13, 1963.

The President and Mrs. Kennedy with their children Caroline and John, Jr. listening and watching to the Black Watch Highlanders, the Scottish bagpipers, perform from the White House South Portico, November 13, 1963.

Among the many public projects of Jacqueline Kennedy as First Lady which continue to be overlooked was her ongoing effort to use the expanse of the great South Lawn of the White House as an outdoor space to provide entertainment for various demographics of young people. She organized a lawn reception for foreign exchange students pursuing higher education at American colleges, for example. Another was a ballet performance.

The Black Watch electrified the November chill with the sound of bagpipes and drums.

The Black Watch electrified the November chill with the sound of bagpipes and drums.

Perhaps the one which came to assume the greatest significance to the public, however, was the November 13, 1963 performance by the Black Watch of the Royal Highlanders Regiment, the Scottish regimental marching band.

Although Jackie Kennedy had remained at the family’s new weekend home on Rattlesnake Mountain in Atoka, Virginia while her husband returned to the White House with their children, the First Lady had read some time before that the Black Watch would be performing in the Washington area and quickly had their manager contacted to see if they would perform for local school children.

The President and Mrs. Kennedy 
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Categories: First Families, First Ladies, History, The Kennedys

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