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tv   Reel America The Inaugural Story 1969  CSPAN  January 20, 2021 1:00pm-1:46pm EST

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civility. watch tonight beginning at 8:00 p.m. eastern and enjoy american history tv every weekend on c-span3. the inaugural story 1969 is a 45-minute film by the joint congressional inaugural committee, the senate recording studio, and the naval photographic center. this film details the time-honored events of a presidential inauguration day. it focuses on the january 20th, 1969, richard nixon inauguration showing guests arriving at the u.s. capitol and scenes from the inaugural parade on pennsylvania avenue. ♪♪ ♪ this is my country ♪
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♪ land of my birth ♪ ♪ this is my country grandest on earth ♪ ♪ i pledge my allegiance america the bold ♪ ♪ for this is my country to have and to hold ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ of a new president, a group of
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men meet in the nation's capitol. this is the joint congressional inaugural committee. under the chairmanship of senator edward dirk son of illinois, the members establish policy, work out details. senator dirk son is assisted by senators mike mansfield of montana, representative gerald ford of michigan, speaker of the house john mccormick of massachusetts, representative carl albert of oklahoma, and mark trice, the executive director of the joint inaugural committee. the nation lays out an elaborate welcome mat for the new president and as the final day approaches tens of thousands of citizens from every state and territory arrive to witness the momentous event. for many without tickets, it was
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a long and cold wait. january 20th began with below-freezing weather and thousands of visitors set out early to locate a van tang point close to the inaugural stands. wherever they hail from, american citizens can claim two towns and once every four years they congregate in one of them to rededicate themselves to their republic. this urge to participate in the ceremony stems partly from the fact that american governing institutions belong to the people. the inaugural ceremony is a unique event. it is the transfer of presidential power, but it also symbolizes the strength that lies in all three branches of government. in this spirit, the inaugural platform, the very hub of the ceremony is shared by distinguished guests from the congress, from the supreme court, and from the president's
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cabinet. at 10:30 a.m., both the senate and the house of representatives convene. moments later, the sergeant at arms of the house carried the symbol of house authority onto the inaugural platform, thus signaling a start of the procession of distinguished guests. by tradition, the house of representatives is seated first. ♪♪ representatives are followed by members of the senate with the senators in position of leadership in the vanguard. the president pro tem of the senate. senator hugh scott of pennsylvania, minority whip. ♪♪ the governors of all of the states are invited and each is seated following the entrance of the senators.
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members of the diplomatic core are members of the selected guests. led by the secretary of state and the secretary of defense, the new cabinet arrives. chief justice earl warren and the justices take their places. among some of the other distinguished guests, frank gorman, command pilot of the historic apollo 8 space journey. as the inaugural stand fills, each guest being seated according to custom and long-standing tradition, another ritual takes place one mile away at the white house. the final hour of the outgoing
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president's term of office begins as speaker of the house john mccormick escorts mrs. nixon and mrs. johnson from the white house to thecyí=n waiting car. president johnson and hisçvjsñ successor richard nixon are escorted to their car by senator dirkson. president johnson leaves the white house for the last time. this building that has been his home for five years will be readied over the next two hours to receive its new tenant. during the brief ride to the capitol, both men take advantage of a few moments of privacy, exchanging last-minute thoughts on the problems and responsibilities inherent in this, the highest office in the land. once the presidential car arrives, both men are, again, the focal point of attention and both are caught up in the final moments of a ceremonial timetable, a timetable set in motion by the constitution and
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one that has run on time for 180 years. ♪♪ the families of the president and the president-elect arrive. the eldest daughter of the president-elect and her escort douglas rogers, son of the new secretary of state. julie, the younger daughter, and her husband, david eisenhower. for mrs. johnson, accompanied by mrs. humphrey, it was a final public appearance as first lady. a feeling that was no doubt understood and shared by another woman, mamie eisenhower. spiro agnew, mrs. everett
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dirkson escorts her to the stands. the perfectly planned timetable is nearly complete. all that remains now is for the principals to make their entrance. ♪♪ ♪♪ it is the last time that "hail to the chief" are played for lyndon johnson. the march will play once again during the ceremony and at that time will honor richard nixon, the 37th president. ♪♪
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vice president-elect spiro agnew takes his place on the platform. ♪♪ the last of the principals arrive. the president-elect preceded by the sergeant at arms of the house, zeke johnson, and of the senate, and escorted by members of the joint inaugural committee. ♪♪ ♪♪
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[ applause ] as the president-elect makes his entrance, the joint inaugural committee's momentous planning task comes to its climax. the ceremony is ready to begin. and the congressional planners take their seats. >> mr. president, mr. president-elect, mr. vice president, mr. vice president-elect, and my fellow citizens, i present for the invocation the reverend charles
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eubank tucker. >> be his best bastion of strength and comfort as he assumes the responsibilities of the presidency and the responsibility as the leader of the free nations of the world. endow him with spiritual wisdom to make the right decisions that may well determine the -- >> prayers were offered by rabbi of california. >> god said, let there be light. >> and archbishop of the greek orthodox church. >> favorably look upon the faithful servant, richard
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millhouse nixon and endow him with purpose and total commitment and dedication so that he may serve the and throughout his years of administration. >> my fellow americans, it is my honor and my privilege to administer the oath of office to the vice president-elect. you will repeat after me. i, spiro theodore agnew that i will support and defend the constitution of the united states. >> the constitution of the united states.
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>> against all enemies. >> against all enemies. >> foreign and domestic. >> foreign and domestic. >> that i will bear true faith and allegiance to the same. >> that i will bear true faith and allegiance to the same. >> that i take this obligation freely. >> that i take this obligation freely. >> without any mental reservation. >> without any mental reservations. >> or purpose of evasion. >> or purpose of evasion. >> and that i will well and faithfully discharge. >> that i will well and faithfully discharge. >> the duties of the office. >> the duties of the office. >> on which i am about to enter. >> on which i am about to enter. >> so help you god. >> so help me god.
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[ applause ] >> beloved evangelist known in all corners of the earth will now deliver a prayer. the reverend billy graham. >> bless them as a team to lead america to the dawning of a new day with renewed trust in god that will lead to peace, justice and prosperity. we pray this humbly in the name of the prince of peace who shed his blood on the cross that men might have eternal life. amen. >> i present now the distinguished chief justice of the supreme court of the united
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states, the honorable earl warren who will administer the oath of office to the president-elect. >> do you richard nixon do solemnly swear. >> i richard nixon do solemnly swear. >> that you will faithfully execute. >> that i will faithfully execute. >> the office of president of the united states. >> the office of president of the united states. >> and will to the best of my ability. >> and will to the best of my ability. >> preserve, protect and defend. >> preserve, protect and defend. >> the constitution of the united states. >> the constitution of the united states. >> so help you god. >> so help me god. [ applause ]
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♪♪ [ applause ] ♪♪ >> senator dirkson, mr. chief justice, mr. vice president, president johnson, vice president humphrey, my fellow americans and my fellow citizens of the world community, i ask you to share with me today the
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majesty of this moment. in the orderly transfer of power we celebrate the unity that keeps us free. each moment in history is a fleeting time, precious and unique. but some stand out as moments of beginning in which courses are set that shape decades or centuries. this can be such a moment. forces now are converging that make possible for the first time the hope that many of man's deepest aspirations can at last be realized. the spiraling pace of change allows us to contemplate advances that once would have taken centuries, in throwing wide the horizons of space we have discovered new horizons on earth. for the first time because the
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people of the world want peace and the leaders of the world are afraid of war, the times are on the side of peace. [ applause ] eight years from now america will celebrate %a0p.t 200th anniversary as a nation.37 and within the lifetime of most people now living, mankind will celebrate that great new year which comes only once in 1,000 years, the beginning of the third millennium. what kind of a nation will we be, what kind of a world will we live in? whether we shape the future of our hopes is ours to determine by our actions and choices. the greatest honor history can bestow is the title of peacemaker. this honor now beckons america.
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the chance to lead the world at least out of the valley of turmoil and onto that high ground of peace that man has dreamed of since the dawn of civilization. if we succeed generations to come will say to us now living that we mastered our moment, that we helped make the world safe for mankind. this is our summons to greatness. and i believe the american people are ready to answer this call. the second third of this century has been a time of proud achievement. we have made enormous strides in science and industry and agricultural, we have shared our wealth more broadly than ever, we learned to manage a modern economy to assure its continued growth, we have given freedom new reach, we have begun to make its promise real for black as well as for white.
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we see the hope of tomorrow in the youth of today. i know america's youth. i believe in them. we can be proud that they are better educated, more committed, more passionately driven by conscious than any generation in our history. [ applause ] no people has ever been so close to the achievement of a just or possess a will to achieve it. because our strengths are so great, we can afford to appraise our weaknesses with candor and to approach them with hope. standing in this same place, a third of a century ago, franklin
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delano roosevelt addressed the nation gripped in fear. he could say in surveying the nation's troubles, they concern, thank god, only material things. our crisis today is in reverse. we find ourselves rich in goods but ragged in spirit. reaching with magnificent precision for the moon, but falling into discord on earth. we are caught in war wanting peace, we see around lives wanting fulfillment, we see tasks needing doing, waiting for hands to do them. to a crisis of the spirit, we need an answer of a spirit and to find that answer, we need only look within ourselves. when we listen to the better angels of our nature, we find
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that they celebrate the simple things, the basic things such as goodness, decency, love, kindness, greatness comes in simple trappings. the simple things are the ones mostly to the day if we are to surmount what divides us and cement what units us. to lower our voices would be a simple thing. and these difficult years, america has suffered from a fever of words, from inflated rhetoric to promises more that it can deliver, from angry rhetoric that fans discontent and hatred, from rhetoric that postures instead of persuading, we cannot learn from one another until we stop shouting at one another, until we speak quietly enough so that our words can be heard as well as our voices. [ applause ]
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for its part, government will listen. we will strive to listen in new ways to the voices of quiet anguish, the voices that speak without words, the voices of the heart, to the injured voices, the anxious voices, the voices that have despaired of being heard. those who have been left out, we will try to bring in. those left behind we will help to catch up. for all of our people, we will set as our goal the decent order that makes progress possible in and our livings secure. as we reach towards our hopes, our task is to build on what has gone before, not turning away from the old, but turning toward the new. in this past third of a century, government has passed more laws, spent more money, initiated more programs in all of our previous history. in pursuing our goals of full
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employment, better housing, excellence in education, and rebuilding our cities and improving our rural areas, and protecting our environment, enhancing the quality of life and all of these and more, we will and must press urgently forward. we shall plan now for the day when our wealth can be transferred from the destruction of war abroad to the urgent needs of our people at home. [ applause ] the american dream does not come to those who fall asleep. but we are approaching the limits of what government alone can do. our greatest need now is to reach beyond government, to enlist the legion of the concerned and the committed. what has to be done, has to be done by government and people together or it will not be done
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at all. the lesson of past agony is that without the people we can do nothing. with the people we can do everything. [ applause ] to match the magnitude of our tasks, we need the energies of our people enlisted not only in grand enterprises, but more importantly in those small splendid efforts that make headlines in the neighborhood newspaper instead of the national journal. with these, we can build a great cathedral of the spirit, each of us raising it one stone at a time, as he reaches out to his neighbor, helping, carrying, doing. i do not offer a life of uninspiring deeds. i do not call for a life of grim sacrifice. i does you to join in a high
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adventure, one as rich as humanity itself and as exciting as the times we live in. the essence of freedom is that each of us shares in the shaping of its own destiny. until he has been part of a cause larger than himself, no man is truly whole. the way to fulfillment is in the use of our talents. we achieve nobility and the spirit that inspires that youth. as we measure what can be done, we shall promise only what we know we can produce. but as we chart our goals, we shall be lifted by our dreams. no man can be fully free while his neighbor is not. to go forward at all is to go forward together. this means black and white together as one nation, not two. the laws have caught up with our
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conscious. what remains is to give life to what is in the law. to ensure at least that as all of are born equal in dignity before god, all are born equal in dignity before man. [ applause ] as we learn to go forward together at home, let us also seek to go forward together with all mankind. let us take as our goal where peace is unknown, make it welcome. where peace is fragile, make it strong. where peace is temporary, make it permanent. after a period of confrontation, we are entering an era of negotiation. let all nations know that during this administration our lines of communication will be open. we seek an open world. open to ideas, open to the
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exchange of goods and people, a world in which no people great or small will live in angry isolation. we cannot expect to make everyone our friend. but we can try to make no one our enemy. [ applause ] those who would be our adversaries we invite to a peaceful competition, not in conquering territory or expanding dominion, but in enriching the life of man. as we explore the reaches of space, let us go to the new worlds together not as new worlds to be conquered, but as a new adventure to be shared. and with those who are willing to join, let us cooperate to reduce the burden of arms, to strengthen the structure of peace, to lift up the poor and the hungry. but to all those who would be
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tempted by weakness, let us leave no doubt that we will be as strong as we need to be for as long as we need to be. [ applause ] over the past 20 years, since i first came to this capitol as a freshman congressman, i have visited most of the nations of the world. i have come to know the leaders of the world, the great forces, the hatreds, the fears that divide the world. i know that peace does not come through wishing for it. that there is no substitute for days and even years of patience and prolonged diplomacy. i also know the people of the world. i have seen the hunger of a homeless child, the pain of a
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man wounded in battle, the grief of a mother who has lost her son. i know these have no ideology, no race. i know america. i know the heart of america is good. i speak from my own heart and q deepz concern we have. suf. i have taken an oath today in the presence of god and my countrymen to uphold and defend the constitution of the united states and to that oath i now add this sacred commitment. i shall my office, energies and all the wisdom i can summon to the cause of peace among nations. let this message be heard by strong and weak alike. [ applause ]
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the peace we seek, the peace we seek to win is not victory over any other people but the peace that comes with healing in its wings, with compassion for those who have suffered, with understanding for those who have opposed us, with the opportunity for all the peoples of this earth to choose their own destiny. only a few short weeks ago we shared the glory of man's first sight of the world as god sees it, as a single sphere reflecting light in the darkness. as the apollo astronauts flew over the moon's gray surface on
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christmas eve, they spoke to us of the beauty of earth. in that voice so clear, we heard them invoke god's blessing on its goodness. in that moment, their view from the moon moved a poet to write "to see the earth as it truly is, small and blue and beautiful, in that eternal silence where it floats, is to see ourselves on riders on the earth together. brothers in that bright loveliness in the eternal cold. brothers who know now they are truly brothers." in that moment of technological triumph men turns their thoughts towards home and humanity that man's destiny on earth is not
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deviceable, telling us however far we reach into the cosmos, our destiny lies not in the stars but on earth itself, in our own hands, in our own hearts. we have endured a long night of the american spirit. but as our eyes catch the dimness of the first rays of dawn, let us not curse the remaining dark. let us gather in the light. our destiny offers not the cup of despair, but the chalice of opportunity. so let us seize it, not in fear but in gladness. and riders on the earth together, let us go forward. firm in our faith, steadfast in our purpose, cautious of the dangers, but sustained by our
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confidence in the will of god and the promise of man. [ applause ] [ applause ] >> the ceremonies inaugurating richard nixon as the 37th president of the united states will close with a benediction offered by the archbishop of new york. >> oh, heavenly father, we thank you on this historic day for all the blessings that you have bestowed upon your country from its very beginning up to the
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present moment. [ applause ] [ applause ] after a luncheon in the capitol building, the next event of the day was the traditional inaugural parade. for many visitors to washington on inaugural day, the parade is the climax of the festivities. it affords color, excitement, and a chance to see their new president. as the presidential escort and honor guard makes the ceremonial journey down pennsylvania avenue
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to the white house, a spectacular parade follows. >> the vice president of the united states. ♪♪ ♪♪
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♪♪ ♪♪ >> following the inaugural theme of forward together, every state and territory of the nation joined in honoring the new president with a colorful parade of floats and marching units. ♪♪
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♪♪ by the time the last unit passed the reviewing stand, darkness had fallen over the nation's capitol. january 20th, 1969, had only a few hours remaining. but for richard nixon, the day had been only a first step in a challenging journey that would take him and the nation through many nights and many new days. >> we have endured a long night of the american spirit.
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but as our eyes catch the dimness of the first rays of dawn, let us not curse the remaining dark, let us gather in the light. our destiny offers not the cup of despair, but the chalice of opportunity. so let us seize them, not in fear but in gladness, and riders on the earth together, let us go forward, firm in our faith, steadfast in our purpose, cautious of the dangers, but sustained by our confidence in the will of god and the promise of man. american history tv on c-span3, exploring the people and events that tell the american story every weekend. coming up this weekend, saturday at 2:00 p.m. eastern, the history makers with a
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conversation between founder and president juliana richardson and juan williams. sunday at 2:00 p.m. eastern, the history makers series continues with jeanette cole and ruth simmons on the history of african-americans in education and the importance of hbcus. on "reel america," in light of the recent attacks on the u.s. capitol, watch several films on the united states government and american democracy which offers civic lessons on how the government works. at 6:30 p.m. eastern, the book "in the heart of the sea." about the 1820 sinking of the ship. at 8:00 p.m. eastern on the presidency, we look back at farewells of previous presidents bill clinton, george w. bush, dwight eisenhower, john kennedy and ronald reagan. exploring the american story,


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