The Wisdom in Leaving Dealey Plaza to Visitors' ImaginationsRoundup: Historians' Take
tags: JFK, Dallas, JFK assassination, Kennedys
Max Holland is the author of The Kennedy Assassination Tapes (2004) and Marquette University professor John McAdams is the author of JFK Assassination Logic (2012). They may be contacted at email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.
Four American presidents have been assassinated, but only one city has ever been blamed for an act of political murder: Dallas.
The arrest of perhaps the only proud Marxist within a 100-mile radius of Dealey Plaza did little to placate those who believed that Dallas’ atmosphere was somehow responsible. The story of how the city subsequently coped with America’s emotional Grand Canyon should be one of the feel-good stories on the 50th anniversary of the assassination except for one thing: How Dallas has inaccurately portrayed what happened that day in Dealey Plaza.
Until 2013, Dallas desisted from erecting interpretive graphics. The only commentary was a plaque affixed in 1981 to the former Texas School Book Depository. Included in the plaque’s inscription is the note that Oswald “allegedly” killed JFK. This unwise concession to conspiracy theorists illustrates the depth of Dallas’ trauma; long before the Warren Commission report, the city’s own lawmen knew they had apprehended the right killer.
Otherwise, Dealey Plaza was frozen in time. Visitors were left to marvel at how small an area it really is, compared to the enormity of the crime....
comments powered by Disqus
- Rise of Donald Trump Tracks Growing Debate Over Global Fascism
- Tales of African-American History Found in DNA
- History Celebrates New Show Roots With Project to Digitize Post-Slavery Documents
- In 1453, this Ottoman sultan ended Christian rule in Constantinople. But was he a good Muslim?
- Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation among documents sold for $6.2m in New York
- History Relevance Campaign meets at the Smithsonian
- Bernard Lewis Turns 100
- David Lowenthal, author of "The Past Is a Foreign Country,” says it’s folly to scratch the names of slaveholders off buildings
- Jean Edward Smith, biographer of FDR and Ike, has a new biography coming out … of George W. Bush
- Flora Fraser, biographer of George and Martha Washington, wins $50,000 George Washington Prize