MHA Seeks Past Presidential Primary Photos from the Queen City

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Then Presidential-aspirant John Kennedy addressed a gathering at Manchester Airport after touching down at Grenier Field during the 1960 campaign.
Then Presidential-aspirant John Kennedy addressed a gathering at Manchester Airport after touching down at Grenier Field during the 1960 campaign.

MANCHESTER, NH — The Manchester Historic Association is seeking photos of Presidential candidates down through the years – specifically campaigning in Manchester – for an upcoming exhibition on the Queen City’s role in the Presidential Primary process.

“We know the Presidential Primary is a statewide event, but we believe Manchester is the true crucible for the primary process,” said John Clayton, executive director of the MHA.

“We all joke about politicians kissing babies, but that really happens here in Manchester,” he added, “so we’re looking for photos of Manchester folks mingling with candidates from Robert Taft to Adlai Stevenson, from John F. Kennedy to Richard Nixon and all the way up to the current campaign.”

To date, the MHA has received dozens of photos from current and former campaign stops like the Red Arrow Diner, Bobby Stephen’s Vault Restaurant and the former Merrimack Restaurant, but the greatest trove of all has come from Manchester resident Nicole Brassard Jordan.

“Nicole’s grandfather was former Manchester Postmaster Roger Brassard, who was chairman of JFK’s New Hampshire campaign back in the 1960 election,” Clayton said. “Mr. Brassard saved everything – correspondence with the President, campaign buttons and posters – but for me, the biggest find was a folder of photos showing JFK and Jackie campaigning in Manchester that simply make my jaw drop.

“We’re also collaborating with the New Hampshire Institute of Politics at St. Anselm College as well as local photographers like George Naum and Bob LaPree, but I want to bring the people of Manchester into the mix as well,” he added.

The deadline for submissions is Nov. 14.

Prints of photos will be scanned and promptly returned to their owners, who will be acknowledged in the exhibit. For those with electronic versions of photos, they can be emailed to history@manchesterhistoric.org.

For more information, contact the MHA at 603-622-7531.

About Carol Robidoux 5454 Articles
Journalist and editor of ManchesterInkLink.com, a hyperlocal news and information site for Manchester, NH.