Haunting Kennedy Assassination Photos That Most People Have Never Seen Before

Published June 28, 2017
Updated February 17, 2021

These photos of JFK's assassination taken just before, during, and after the event provide a new perspective on this historic tragedy.

Assassination Of JFK
Kennedy Assassination Clint Hill
Photos From The Assassination Of President Kennedy
Shocked Woman
Haunting Kennedy Assassination Photos That Most People Have Never Seen Before
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In the immediate aftermath of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, countless writers spilled untold amounts of ink in an effort to grapple with a tragedy that had rattled the United States of America to its core.

Many of these writers delivered sweeping statements on the historic weight of this catastrophe or relayed the thoughts and words of the insiders sitting in America's highest corridors of power.

And yet, of everything written in the aftermath of the assassination of JFK, the piece that remains the most well-remembered today is the one that set its sights seemingly much lower — but, in truth, much higher.

Rather than wax tragic about the state of the nation or interview those closest to the president, legendary New York journalist Jimmy Breslin instead spoke with Clifton Pollard, the man tasked with digging Kennedy's grave, and delivered an affecting account of a lowly laborer who'd suddenly found himself in the middle of a historic moment.

In focusing on such an ostensibly unremarkable corner of such an immense episode in American history, Breslin both found an unexpected angle that no other writer was taking and provided the average reader with an emotional entry point into an event that was simply too upsetting to confront head on.

So memorable and moving was Breslin's approach that not only does his piece live on 54 years later, but it's also inspired what's since been called "the gravedigger school of news writing."

Proponents of this approach are always on the lookout for their "gravedigger," the unassuming corner of a story that proves all the more weighty because of just how peripheral it may seem at first.

And as for the Kennedy assassination itself, Breslin certainly didn't find that episode's only "gravedigger." On the contrary, the assassination — from the hours before the shooting to the arrest and murder of the suspect to the president's funeral — is filled with little moments, people, places, and things that illustrate the event's gravitas in ways that a straightforward document of the actual shooting itself (such as, say, the Zapruder film) just can't.

The seldom-seen Kennedy assassination photos above are certainly proof of that.

After seeing these photos the JFK assassination, learn a little about what's inside the secret Kennedy assassination files set to be released by the U.S. government this October. Then, have a look at some of the most incredible John F. Kennedy photos ever taken.

John Kuroski
John Kuroski is the editorial director of All That's Interesting. He graduated from New York University with a degree in history, earning a place in the Phi Alpha Theta honor society of history students. An editor at All That's Interesting since 2015, his areas of interest include modern history and true crime.