Republican Vice President Richard Nixon was well-known, experienced, and admired for his foreign policy expertise, while Massachusetts Senator John F. Kennedy was youthful, handsome and inexperienced. It was at the first fully televised presidential campaign in history that many voters came to focus on Kennedy’s and Nixon’s contrasting personalities and policies. Radio listeners had the debate dead even, but Kennedy won over the much larger television audience allowing him to secure what was one of the closest presidential elections in American history.
Designed by Franklin Roosevelt and dedicated on June 30, 1941, the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum is the nation’s first presidential library and the only one used by a sitting president. Every president since FDR has followed his example and established a presidential library administered by the National Archives and Records Administration to preserve and make accessible to the American people the records of their presidencies. The Roosevelt Library’s mission is to foster a deeper understanding of the lives and times of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt and their continuing impact on contemporary life. This work is carried out through the Library’s archives and research room, museum collections and exhibitions, innovative educational programs, and engaging public programming. For more information about the Library or its programs call (800) 337-8474 or visitwww.fdrlibrary.marist.edu.