A Portrait of America: Watching Robert F. Kennedy's Funeral Train Pass By

Following the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy in Los Angeles on June 5, 1968, his body was taken to New York City for a funeral mass in Saint Patrick’s Cathedral. After the completion of the mass, Kennedy’s coffin was transported by a private funeral train from New York to Washington, D.C., to be buried in Arlington National Cemetery on June 8.

It was a Saturday, and mourners came out by the hundreds of thousands to line the tracks along the 225-mile journey. A trip that would normally have taken four hours ended up lasting more than eight hours. On board the train that day, on assignment for LOOK magazine, was staff photographer Paul Fusco, who ended up taking thousands of photographs of mourning faces, tributes, and patriotic displays along the way. The collection of photographs ended up becoming more than a document of Kennedy’s final journey; they became a powerful collective portrait of America at a pivotal moment in history. Gathered below, images of that trip from the LOOK Magazine Collection in the Library of Congress.

Read more
Hints: View this page full screen. Skip to the next and previous photo by typing j/k or ←/→.

Most Recent

  • Kiran Ridley / Barcroft Media via Getty

    Photos of the Week: Smoggy Santiago, Miniature Taipei, Mermaid Parade

    A watery rescue in Russia, dragon boat racing in China, a soap box derby in France, Hawaiian lava viewed from Earth orbit, flamingos in Kenya, a boxer dressed as a lion in Germany, and much more.

  • Daniel Leal-Olivas / AFP / Getty

    Hats of the Royal Ascot

    A collection of photos of millinery miracles worn by Royal Ascot racegoers over the past few years.

  • John Moore / Getty

    On the Border With the Photographer John Moore

    A collection of images from the southern U.S. border by the Getty Images photographer John Moore, showing the landscape, those who patrol the border, and those who choose to risk everything to cross it.

  • Mike Blake / Reuters

    Photos: A Tent City for Detained Children in Texas

    Inside a port of entry facility in Tornillo, Texas, temporary housing has been built for the newly overflowing population of unaccompanied minors and the children of detained migrant parents, under the new “zero-tolerance” policy.