This day, Nov. 22, 1963, is considered as one of the watershed days in American History. While riding in a motorcade in Dallas, Texas with wife Jacqueline and Texas Governor John Connally and his wife, President John F. Kennedy was assassinated, the fatal shots coming from the 6th floor of the Texas Book Depository Building. Kennedy’s death put the shocked country into a state of mourning, and ended the brief, but celebrated term of the JFK administration.
Legally, it also put into place immediate succession plans, with Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson being hastily sworn in as the nation’s 36th president aboard Air Force One, on the way back to Washington from Dallas. Johnson and wife Lady Bird were riding in a car behind Kennedy’s in the motorcade. Johnson was officially sworn-in by federal district judge Sarah Hughes. This marked the first time in history that a president was sworn-in by a woman and also the only time the oath of office has been administered aboard an airplane.
Contingencies for succession, in place since the days of the founding fathers, were followed, and the shaken American people had their new leader.