Montana went to then-Vice President Richard Nixon in the 1960 Presidential Election, but that did little to contain the excitement of many Billings-area residents when President John F. Kennedy arrived on September 25, 1963.
Local law enforcement scrambled to secure the airport where Air Force One touched down at 3:30 pm, and around 17,000 Montanans flooded the Yellowstone County Fairgrounds to hear him speak on conservation (as planned) and the nuclear-test ban (not planned) at 4:00 pm.
JFK was in Billings for all of two hours, an event made more significant for attendees by what followed just two months later. President Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas, on November 22, 1963.
Read more about JFK's visit in the Billings Gazette's 2013 article, 50 years ago this week, John F. Kennedy visited Billings; less than 2 months later he was dead, and see hundreds of other historic and stunning image in the Gazette's new book, Volume II: Billings Memories!