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John F. Kennedy Assassination 50th Anniversary

 John F. Kennedy, the 36th president of the United States was assassinated in Dallas, Texas 50 years ago this year. It was an unforgettable day for most Americans who grew up in the 1960s, leaving a lasting impression on many of them. "Where were you when you heard about President Kennedy's assassination?" would become a recurring question of the time.

John F. Kennedy on Film

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the death of President John F. Kennedy.  Check out some of the following documentaries for some historical perspective:

The Kennedy inauguration [videodisc]: January 20, 1961 by Films for the Humanities & Sciences ; NBC News ; NBC Universal, Inc

A tour of the White House with Mrs. John F. Kennedy [videodisc]: 1962 televised tour by created and produced by CBS News ; proudly presented by Marshall Fields, the Field Museum

Cuban missile crisis [videodisc]: three men go to war

American Experience: JFK by Kennedy, John F

The Kennedy Half-Century by Kennedy, John F

JFK Remembered: 50 Years Later by Kennedy, John Fitzgerald

The Day Kennedy Died by Spacey, Kevin

New Documentaries on the Shelf

Manhunt— Boston bombers [videodisc] by a NOVA production ; produced and directed by Miles O'Brien

The search for Robert Johnson [videodisc]: the real story of the greatest folk blues guitar player that ever lived by produced and directed by Chris Hunt.

Treasures of New York [videodisc] by WLIW21 in association with WNET

Nureyev [videodisc]: a portrait by producer and director, Patricia Foy

Richard III [videodisc]: martyr or monster? by produced by Coda Publishing ; written and directed by Bob Carruthers

The waiting room [videodisc] by Docurama ; directed by Peter Nicks

Native American Biographies

In honor of Native American Heritage Month check out some of the biographies of notable First Americans from the Library's collection, or go to this list for more information.

Tecumseh: a life by John Sugden

Sacajawea by [by] Harold P. Howard

Chief Joseph & the flight of the Nez Perce: the untold story of an American tragedy by Kent Nerburn

Crazy Horse: a Lakota life by Kingsley M. Bray

Pocahontas by Grace Steele Woodward

New Books on the Biography Shelf

Daughter of empire: my life as a Mountbatten by Lady Pamela Hicks

Jim Henson: the biography by Brian Jay Jones

Johnny Carson by Henry Bushkin

My story by Elizabeth Smart with Chris Stewart

Native American Heritage Month

birdIn 1990, President George H.W. Bush declared the month of November as "National American Indian Heritage Month", which has come to be commonly referred to as Native American Heritage Month. By either name it is a time of "recognition for the significant contributions the first Americans made to the establishment and growth of the U.S." The Library's collection is a great place to look for materials about Native Americans and their place in our country's history.

500 nations: an illustrated history of North American Indians by Alvin M. Josephy, Jr. ; based on a documentary filmscript by Jack Leustig, Roberta Grossman, Lee Miller, and William Morgan with contributions by John M.D. Pohl

The Cambridge history of the native peoples of the Americas

Daily life of Native Americans from post-Columbian through nineteenth-century America by Alice Nash and Christoph Strobel

Gunfight at the O.K. Corral

It was on October 26, 1881 in Tombstone, Arizona that the infamous gunfight took place. Generally regarded as the most famous gunfight in the history of the American West, it is believed to have lasted all of thirty seconds. On one side were the cowboy outlaws Billy Clairborne, Ike and Billy Clanton, and Tom and Frank McLaury. Opposing them were Marshall Virgil Earp and his brothers Morgan and Wyatt, as well as Doc Holliday. Hollywood versions of the gun battle can be found in the films My Darling Clementine (1946), Gunfight at the O.K. Corral (1957) and Tombstone (1993). Find out what the fight was really all about and who survived by checking out some of the following books and dvds from the Library's collection:

The last gunfight: the real story of the shootout at the O.K. Corral and how it changed the American West by Jeff Guinn

And die in the West: the story of the O.K. Corral gunfight by Paula Mitchell Marks

British Historical Dramas

Three recent television dramas draw on British history for their inspiration. The White Queen, airing on Starz, is based on Philippa Gregory's historical novels about the Wars of the Roses - The White Queen, The Red Queen, and The Kingmaker's Daughter. PBS's The Hollow Crown combines four of Shakespeare's plays to tell the story of three kings who shaped English history - Richard III, Henry IV, and Henry V. The new CW series Reign chronicles the life of the teenage Mary, Queen of Scots. Enhance your viewing experience with some historical background on both the people and the events by checking out some of these titles from the Library's collection:

Blood sisters: the women behind the Wars of the Roses by Sarah Gristwood

Lancaster against York: the Wars of the Roses and the foundation of modern Britain by Trevor Royle

The Wars of the Roses by Alison Weir

Cuban Missile Crisis Anniversary

Last year marked the 50th anniversary of one of the most pivotal moments of the Cold War. For 13 days in October 1962, the United States and the former Soviet Union engaged in a political and military standoff over the installation of nuclear-armed Soviet missiles in Cuba — just 90 miles off the U.S. coast. President John F. Kennedy notified the country about the presence of the missiles in an historic television address on October 22, 1962. It was during this speech that he explained his decision to enact a naval blockade around Cuba. Because of this many, people believed the world was on the brink of nuclear war. Disaster was averted, however when Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev agreed to remove the missiles in exchange for the U.S. not invading Cuba, and also removing U.S. missiles from Turkey. The confrontation was officially ended on October 28, 1962.

Maximum danger: Kennedy, the missiles, and the crisis of American confidence by Robert Weisbrot

One minute to midnight: Kennedy, Khrushchev, and Castro on the brink of nuclear war by Michael Dobbs