Timeline

    John F. Kennedy assassination

    On Nov. 22, 1963, Pres­id­ent John F. Kennedy and First Lady Jac­queline Kennedy ar­rive in Dal­las for the last day of a five-city tour through Texas. The pres­id­ent and his wife made the trip to shore up sup­port for his planned 1964 reelec­tion bid. The state, with its large elect­or­al vote, would be im­port­ant in any bid to se­cure a second term.

    Scroll down or use J and K to advance the time log

    Nov. 22, 1963
    12:30 p.m.

    The presidential limousine, a 1961 Lincoln Continental, races toward Parkland Hospital, with Secret Service Agent Clinton Hill clinging to the back.
    The presidential limousine, a 1961 Lincoln Continental, races toward Parkland Hospital, with Secret Service Agent Clinton Hill clinging to the back. (Justin Newman / Associated Press)

    Kennedy is shot and mortally wounded as he is driven through Dealey Plaza in an open car with the first lady, Texas Gov. John B. Connally and Connally’s wife, Nellie. Connally is also struck by a bullet. Later, Connally will recall that he said, “My God, they are going to kill us all.”

    Nov. 22, 1963

    Lee Harvey Oswald's mug shot.
    Lee Harvey Oswald's mug shot. (Courtesy Les Ellsworth / Dallas Police Department)

    Lee Harvey Oswald, 24, of Fort Worth, Texas, is arrested in a movie theater shortly after the fatal shooting of Dallas police Officer J.D. Tippit. Oswald is also questioned about any connection to the assassination of Kennedy.

    Nov. 22, 1963
    2:39 p.m.

    With Jacqueline Kennedy beside him, Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson is sworn in as president by U.S. District Judge Sarah T. Hughes, left.
    With Jacqueline Kennedy beside him, Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson is sworn in as president by U.S. District Judge Sarah T. Hughes, left. (Universal History Archive / Getty Images)

    Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson takes the presidential oath aboard Air Force One at Dallas’ Love Field. In the hastily arranged ceremony, Johnson took the oath upon a missal, a Catholic liturgical book, found on a side table in the president’s airplane bedroom.

    Nov. 23, 1963

    (Los Angeles Times, Nov. 24, 1963)

    FBI handwriting experts reveal that the rifle presumably used to assassinate Kennedy was purchased by Oswald from a Chicago mail-order house for $12.78.

    Nov. 24, 1963

    This bolt–action, clip–fed rifle, found on the sixth floor of the Texas School Book Depository building in Dallas, is identified as the weapon used to assassinate Kennedy. (September 1964)
    This bolt–action, clip–fed rifle, found on the sixth floor of the Texas School Book Depository building in Dallas, is identified as the weapon used to assassinate Kennedy. (September 1964) (Associated Press)

    Dist. Atty. Henry Wade makes public that the palm print of Lee Harvey Oswald has been found on the rifle experts believe killed President Kennedy.

    Nov. 24, 1963
    11:21 a.m.

    Plainclothesman Jim A. Leavelle, left, recoils as Jack Ruby shoots Oswald.
    Plainclothesman Jim A. Leavelle, left, recoils as Jack Ruby shoots Oswald. (Bob Jackson / Dallas Times-Herald / Associated Press)

    Oswald is mortally wounded by Dallas nightclub owner Jack Ruby in the basement garage of police headquarters. The incident is captured on live television.

    Read Times reporter Gene Blake’s eyewitness account of the shooting.

    Nov. 25, 1963

    The horse-drawn caisson bearing the body of the late president turns into Memorial Bridge on the way to Arlington National Cemetery.
    The horse-drawn caisson bearing the body of the late president turns into Memorial Bridge on the way to Arlington National Cemetery. (File photo)

    An estimated 800,000 mourners line the streets of Washington as the slain president’s casket is taken from the Capitol to the White House, then to St. Matthew’s Cathedral, and at last to Arlington National Cemetery, where he is buried with full military honors.

    Nov. 25, 1963

    Oswald is quickly and quietly buried near Arlington, Texas, shortly after Kennedy is laid to rest in Arlington National Cemetery.

    Nov. 25, 1963

    Jack Ruby's mug shot.
    Jack Ruby's mug shot. (United Press International)

    Ruby, accused of shooting Oswald, is successfully transferred from Dallas police headquarters to the county jail.

    Nov. 26, 1963

    The FBI and the Justice Department launch investigations into Kennedy’s assassination and Oswald’s shooting death.

    Nov. 27, 1963

    Connally with his wife, Nellie, at his bedside at Parkland Hospital in Dallas, describes the attack on the presidential motorcade. (Nov. 28, 1963)
    Connally with his wife, Nellie, at his bedside at Parkland Hospital in Dallas, describes the attack on the presidential motorcade. (Nov. 28, 1963) (Associated Press)

    Gov. Connally, who was wounded during the assassination of President Kennedy, gives his first interview from his hospital bed. “In the space of a few seconds,” he said, “great joy and anticipation was turned to great tragedy.”

    Nov. 30, 1963

    President Johnson’s special commission prepares for its investigation into the assassination. Johnson instructs the seven-member panel, whose chairman is Chief Justice Earl Warren, to find the truth “as far as it can be discovered.”

    Dec. 3, 1963

    (Los Angeles Times, Dec. 4, 1963)

    An FBI report concludes that there was no conspiracy between Oswald, who is described as “pro-communist,” and Ruby, the nightclub owner who killed him.

    Mar. 3, 1964

    Seated in the second row are Mildred McCollum, Aileen B. Shields, Gwen L. English, Douglas J. Sowell, J. Waymon Rose and Allen W. McCoy. Seated in the front row are Luther Gene Dickerson, Max E. Causey, R.J. Flechtner Jr., J.G. Holton, James E. Cunningham and Louise Malone. Standing at left rear are bailiffs Nell Tyler and W.W. Mabra.
    Seated in the second row are Mildred McCollum, Aileen B. Shields, Gwen L. English, Douglas J. Sowell, J. Waymon Rose and Allen W. McCoy. Seated in the front row are Luther Gene Dickerson, Max E. Causey, R.J. Flechtner Jr., J.G. Holton, James E. Cunningham and Louise Malone. Standing at left rear are bailiffs Nell Tyler and W.W. Mabra. (United Press International)

    Eight men and four women are chosen to hear the Ruby murder trial. One news account says of the panel: “It is a young and apparently intelligent jury.”

    Mar. 13, 1964

    Ruby, center, confers with his attorneys, Joe Tonahill, left, and Melvin Belli, right, before court is in session for a bond hearing. (Dec. 23, 1963)
    Ruby, center, confers with his attorneys, Joe Tonahill, left, and Melvin Belli, right, before court is in session for a bond hearing. (Dec. 23, 1963) (Associated Press)

    The Ruby murder case goes to the jury, with the state pleading for the death penalty and chief defense attorney Melvin Belli telling the panel, “This poor, sick fellow … and sick he is…. This man should be turned out.”

    March 14, 1964
    12:23 p.m.

    Dallas County Dist. Atty. Henry Wade. (Nov. 25, 1965)
    Dallas County Dist. Atty. Henry Wade. (Nov. 25, 1965) (Associated Press)

    Ruby is convicted of murder with malice and sentenced to die in the electric chair for killing accused presidential assassin Oswald. “I just thanked [the jurors] for what I thought was a fair and impartial verdict,” Dist. Atty. Wade tells reporters.

    June 7, 1964

    Chief Justice Warren visits Ruby in the Dallas County Jail. Warren, chairman of the commission appointed by President Johnson to investigate Kennedy’s assassination, talks with Ruby for three hours.

    Sept. 27, 1964

    Warren gives President Johnson a report on the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Looking on is Warren Commission member and Michigan Rep. Gerald Ford. Ford will become president after Richard Nixon, the man Kennedy defeated, resigns the presidency 10 years later.
    Warren gives President Johnson a report on the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Looking on is Warren Commission member and Michigan Rep. Gerald Ford. Ford will become president after Richard Nixon, the man Kennedy defeated, resigns the presidency 10 years later. (File photo)

    The Warren Commission releases its report on the assassination. The seven-member panel rules that Oswald planned and executed the “cruel and shocking” slaying of the president without assistance from any individual or group.

    Read the summary and conclusions in the Warren report.

    Oct. 5, 1966

    The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals reverses the conviction and death sentence of Ruby and orders a new trial somewhere other than Dallas. The three-judge court says a change of venue should have been granted in Ruby’s original trial.

    Jan. 3, 1967

    (Los Angeles Times, Jan. 3, 1967)

    The Los Angeles Times reports that Jack Ruby has secretly recorded a denial of any conspiracy in the slaying of Lee Harvey Oswald.

    Jan. 3, 1967
    10:30 a.m.

    Jack Ruby. (Mar. 5, 1964)
    Jack Ruby. (Mar. 5, 1964) (Associated Press)

    Ruby dies of complications from cancer at Parkland Hospital, where the president and Oswald died in November 1963.

    Read more about Jack Ruby.

    May 20, 1994

    The memorial to President John F. Kennedy and First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis.
    The memorial to President John F. Kennedy and First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. (Saul Loeb / AFP/Getty Images)

    Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis dies of cancer in her New York apartment at age 64. The former first lady is later buried alongside President John F. Kennedy in Arlington National Cemetery.

    Published: Nov. 20, 2013
    Sources: Los Angeles Times research
    Credits: Maloy Moore, TimelineSetter
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