Enjoys Largest Rally Here
May 2, 1960
Enjoys Largest Rally Here
U. S. Senator John F. Kennedy, speaking here yesterday afternoon before a crowd described as the largest of his West Virginia campaign, assured his listeners that if he came out with a majority in the May 10 primary he would be nominated for president. And he added: “I assure you I will defeat Dick Nixon.[“]
The Democratic senator, speaking only briefly because of a throat infection, told the crowd at an ox roast at City Park that “I’m running for president of the same reason I ran for Senate for the same reason I ran for the House of Representatives. I ran for the House of Representatives for the same reason I entered the Navy—that is, I was brought up to have a strong devotion to my country.”
The crowd was estimated by Wood county Sheriff O. C. Boles at 4,000. There were others who [believed that the crowd was even larger than that.
Senator Kennedy’s remarks brought applause when he told the crowd why he was running for – Ed. Note: text was out of order in newspaper] president and again when he said he would defeat Richard M. Nixon.
The senator has been plagued with throat trouble for the past two days, and yesterday he apologized to the crowd for the “infec-[text out of order] tion which at this crucial stage of my life has made it rather difficult for me to speak.”
His 27-year-old brother, Ted Kennedy, took over the speaking task following the senator’s brief remarks. Ted Kennedy told the gathering that Sen. Kennedy got about 10 times as many votes as his opponent Senator Hubert H. Humphrey, in balloting last week in Pennsylvania. This was a write-in vote.
The younger Kennedy said Humphrey “has not the slightest chance of being elected president of the United States.” He stressed the importance of West Virginia’s primary to the presidential hopes of his brother, stating “the people in West Virginia have an ooportunity [sic] to name the Democratic nominee.”
Accompanying Senator Kennedy, in addition to his brother, was his sister, Mrs. Sargent Shriver of Chicago. Mrs. Kennedy could not attend. She returned to Washington, D. C. Saturday from Charleston because their daughter, Caroline, three, was running a temperature.
Senator Kennedy was introduced by William Bruce Hoff, Parkersburg lawyer, who was chairman for the ox roast, held at the park band shell. The senator’s schedule called for him to leave the park at 4:10 p.m., but a receiving line which following his and his brother’s talks ran for around an hour and a half and he declined to leave while persons were still coming up to greet him. As it developed, he left at 5:15 p.m.
The Big Red Band of Parkersburg High School provided music for the rally. Seated in the band shell, the band started playing about 2:30 p.m. and continued until 2:45 p.m., when William B. Richardson, master of ceremonies, started introducing Democratic candidates some 15 to 20 in all.
As Senator Kennedy and h[i]s party arrived at the park, the band played a fanfare, and as the party walked up to the band shell, the band presented “Anchors Aweigh,” in honor of the senator’s service with the U. S. Navy.
Then the Rev. Harley E. Bailey of the Jefferson Baptist Temple gave the invocation, followed by Chairman Hoff’s introductory speech. Then the band played “Hail West Virginia,” followed by the senator’s remarks, and then the talk by his brother.
As Sen. Kennedy left the stage, the band struck up again with “Anchors Aweigh.”
Spokesmen said the supply of buns ran out after some 3,600 were served. The beef supply also was exhausted. Approximately 4,000 cups of coke were served.
Senator Kennedy arrived in Parkersburg late Saturday night and paid a visit to The News building on Juliana St. He spent the night at the Blennerhassett hotel and yesterday, from noon to 2 p.m., attended a reception at Ravenswood’s Community Center. The crowd at Ravenswood was estimated at 500 to 1,000 persons. Senator Kennedy and his brother both spoke, and the senator signed a number of autographs. The senator’s speech, at Ravenswood, as in Parkersburg, was brief. He appeared outside the building and spoke from the steps after having greeted the crowd inside.
Returning to Parkersburg, he made an appearance at a federal employes pay rally at the Labor Temple on 13th St. and then went on the park. Following the rally, he departed for Weirton.
R. P. McDonough of Parkersburg is Senator Kennedy’s West Virginia campaign manager.
Senator Hubert H. Humphrey of Minnesota is scheduled to arrive at the Wood County Airport this morning at 9:42 o’clock, for a full day of campaigning in Parkersburg, including speeches at the Wood County Courthouse at noon today and this evening at the Veterans of Foreign Wars Hall, according to an announcement last night be William L. Jacobs, state co-chairman of the Humphrey for President Committee.
Plans call for Senator Humphrey to speak out-of-doors from the courthouse steps beginning at 12:30 p.m. and again at 8 p.m. at the V. F. W. Hall, 516 Juliana St., A reception for the Senator will be staged at 7 p.m. at the V. F. W. Hall, under the joint sponsorship of the Wood County Democratic Woman’s Club and the Wood County Humphrey for President Committee.
The Senator’s schedule for the day in Parkersburg calls for the following activities:
9:42 a.m. – Arrival at Wood County Airport from Washington.
10:00 a.m. – Motorcade to Parkersburg with State Police escort.
10:30 a.m. – Meeting with labor leaders at Labor Temple, 1406 1/2 13th St.
11:15 a.m. – Press conference at Chancellor Hotel.
12:00 noon – Tour downtown streets of Parkersburg.
12:30 p.m. – Public address from steps of Wood County Courthouse.
1:15 p.m. – Luncheon at Chancellor Hotel.
1:45 p.m. – Recorded radio interviews.
2:20 p.m. – Visit to American Viscose Plant.
3:40 p.m. – Visit E. I. DuPont plant.
5:00 p.m. – Tour of shopping center and downtown streets.
5:30 p.m. – Dinner at Chancellor Hotel.
6:30 p.m. – Appearance on news program.
7 p.m. – Reception at Veterans of Foreign Wars Hall, 516 Juliana St.
8 p.m. – Public address at V. F. W. Hall.
Jacobs said last night that Senator Humphrey will remain overnight in Parkersburg Monday night. The Minnesota Senator will leave Parkersburg by plane Tuesday morning for Huntington, where he will spend the day campaigning.
Representing the Wood County Democratic Woman’s Club as hostesses at the Humphrey reception, will be a contingent of women, headed by the club president, Miss Fern Hart. Miss Hart reported the following list of hostesses:
Miss Anna M. Stephenson, Mrs. Dick Smith, Mrs. C. L. Howard, Mrs. Selmon B. Wells, Mrs. Etta Wheeler, Mrs. Mervin St. Clair, Miss Mabel Stoetzer, Mrs. George Barnett, Miss Helen Price, Mrs. Oliver B. Board, Miss Edna Bailey, Mrs. Robert C. Lantz, Mrs. W. R. Fouse, Mrs. Mary Creel, Mrs. Bonnie Bray, Mrs. Ruth Colvin, Mrs. H. F. Jobes, Mrs. J. V. Mayhall, Mrs. W. D. Keller, Mrs. James A. Pearson, Mrs. T. B. Zinn, Mrs. Walter Archer, Mrs. Basil Tate, Mrs. G. O. Milhoan, Mrs. Buddy Dye, Mrs. Minnie Barr, Mrs. Raymond E. Keller, Mrs. Ralph Boso, Mrs Eva Denning, Mrs. John Smith, Mrs. Glen Lemon and Mrs. William L. Jacobs.
In charge of refreshments for the evening is Mrs. Adrian Morrison, while Mrs. Earl H. Shelton, Jr., is in charge of decorations. Heading the delegation which will greet Senator Humphrey at the Wood County Airport, in addition to Jacobs, will be Rolla A. Johnston, Harold S. Weekley, Mr. and Mrs. Ira Nutter, Clement Dowler, and other members of the Wood County Humphrey for President Committee. Clyde Beary is chairman of the local group.
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