TODAY

TODAY   |  November 15, 2013

JFK the candidate revealed in unearthed film

Thirty-eight minutes of never-before-seen footage offers a rare glimpse of the president and the people around him: as a longshot White House hopeful, as well as a colorized look at his funeral procession. NBC’s Andrea Mitchell reports

Share This:

This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> well, the nation will be remembering the next week the 50th anniversary of the assassination of president kennedy and this morning we have an exclusive first look at never before seen video of the president. nbc's andrea mitchell has the story. andrea, good morning to you.

>> good morning, savannah. 50 years after his death, after untold hours of footage of the decades we have a new discovery, a rare glimpse of john f. kennedy . 38 minutes from an amateur photographer's film archive never been seen. we think of him now as the first television president, young athletic, whether playing with his children or sparring with reporters at celebrated news conferences. but now for the first time, never before seen film of john f. kennedy as a long shot presidential hopeful accompanied by his beloved sister eunice.

>> he said if eunice had been born a boy he would have been the candidate of that generation. so when jackie kennedy did not campaign and often times she was very glad to stay off the campaign trail, eunice kennedy shriver was only too glad to fill in.

>> reporter: a young senator without senority or long resume doing what they do in iowa, even riding a mule.

>> when i looked at the film the first time i said to myself, wow, this is an amazing bit of history.

>> reporter: newly discovered by the photographer's family and saved, kennedy is seen campaign campaigning in the 1962 midterm fighting for the minimum wage.

>> vote democratic on november 6th , 1962 .

>> reporter: and this footage from june 1963 , five months before dallas .

>> the most chilling piece of footage for me is there's a wonderful shot of kennedy riding in a limousine and it crosses from left to right on the screen and it's very reminiscent of the film and it's in fact, the same limousine in which he was killed.

>> reporter: it was a lincoln continental as in dallas with the top down. saddest of all, the funeral.

>> the footage of the funeral, especially, is almost a film in and of itself.

>> if you look closely, you can see john john beginning to raise his arm in that heartbreaking salute as his father's coffin passes by.

>> this is never before seen film and it's moving.

>> it is and especially because we've seen so much of him and he's been gone for 50 years that to find new footage almost brings him back to life.

>> reporter: first discovered by the photographer's grandson a copy of the film archive is being preserved and will be donated to the library of congress .

>> hard to believe they're still discovering new imagines.

>> yeah.

>> and we'll be looking back as this country remembers a key time in our history. on monday we'll go back to dallas with clint hill . he was mrs. kennedy 's secret service agent. he's the one that jumps on the back of the president's car. we were with him. he shares to us what he heard the first lady say at that tragic moment.

>> still so emotional for him.

>> still a tormented man in