Retro Charlotte: John F. Kennedy’s 1960 Presidential Campaign Stop | Charlotte NC Travel & Tourism
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Retro Charlotte: John F. Kennedy’s 1960 Presidential Campaign Stop

By Abby Blanton

In September 1960, U.S. presidential hopeful Senator John F. Kennedy makes a campaign stop in Charlotte. In advance of the November election, he greets voters with smiles while riding down Tryon Street—one of the city’s most significant and traveled paths. Among others, he’s escorted by Mecklenburg County Police Chief George Stephens and North Carolina Governor Luther Hodges.

Kennedy’s visit is part of a long list of notable U.S. presidents who have graced Charlotte with their presence along their respective campaign trails and during their terms in office.

President George Washington visited Charlotte and Mecklenburg County Founder Thomas Polk in the spring of 1791. More than a century later, President Franklin D. Roosevelt celebrated his New Deal economic policies at Charlotte’s American Legion Memorial Stadium. And just four years ago, in September 2012, the city played host to the Democratic National Convention, which welcomed President Barack Obama and hundreds of politicians.

In full, the Queen City has been extending its royal treatment to the nation’s leaders for more than 220 years.

This article ran in the November 2016 issue of Charlotte Happenings.