Ask Not

A photo essay

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The new president's long-remembered inaugural address showcased his elegant rhetoric and cadence. (John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum)

Addressing a nation ready to get moving yet again. (John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum)

1. To take the oath of office, the incoming president lays his hand on his mother’s 1850 family Bible, which records the 1914 marriage of Rose E. Fitzgerald and Joseph P. Kennedy and the births of their nine children. 2. The official program of the January 20, 1961, inauguration. 3. Attendance re- quired a printed invitation, signed by inauguration chairman Edward H. Foley. 4. A forerunner of vanity license plates, for the presidential limousine. (John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum)

Having donned a topcoat and hat, President Kennedy strolls with the first lady outside their new residence on their way to watch the inaugural parade. (John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum)

At noon on January 20, 1961, the 14th chief justice of the United States, Earl Warren, administers the oath of office to the 35th president, John F. Kennedy. (John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum)

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2013/08/ask-not/354782/