This week I decided to look for more information regarding the photographer who took the photo of Lyndon B. Johnson opposed to information about the actual John F. Kennedy assassination. Cecil Stoughton was the long time White House photographer who took daily photos of President Kennedy and his family and even the famous photo of Lyndon B. Johnson becoming president after Kennedy’s assassination.
Cecil Stoughton began his photography for the White House after he was on business taking pictures of President Kennedy being inaugurated. President Kennedy invited Stoughton to become part of the White House photography shortly after. From there Stoughton had a very strong relationship and Kennedy began to see him as won of his most trustworthy photographers. Because of this Stoughton was able to take personal photographs of the Kennedy family on a daily basis.
Regarding the photograph of Lyndon B. Johnson being sworn into office, this famous photo came to be know as one of Stoughton’s most powerful images he has captured. I believe that it could be said that this was one of Stoughton’s highlights of his photography career. It is said that the actual photograph that has been seen by people was set up this way by Stoughton. He positioned everyone so they could be in a certain place during the photograph. Although the image may have been staged it is still a very powerful photograph because of the time and place it has taken place and the situation it is portraying. I believe that every single person that saw this image was struck with a rush of powerful emotions because you can sense the feeling that was in the room during the photograph. My feelings toward the image personally is that there was very serious and shocking vibe during this photograph and there was a lot of tension in the room. This photograph shows how serious Stoughton was when it came to his job as being a photographer for the White House and his relationship towards Kennedy, at this time of devastation and grieving he was still there to capture the moment very professionally. He was even at the actual scene when President Kennedy was shot, he was unable to capture an image but I’m sure he would have if he was given the opportunity.
Sadly, Cecil Stoughton died on November 3rd, 2008 at the age of 88 in his home in Florida. He was a very talented photographer was considered the first one to professionally do it for the White House. I’m sure that many people have seen his work and were greatly impacted by the powerful images he captured.