The Bigger Picture: Visual Archives and the Smithsonian
Category: Collections in Focus
Named after the two-year-old daughter of soon to be President John F. Kennedy, the Caroline began its service as the Kennedy family airplane in 1959. The twin engine Convair CV-240 was one of the first planes with cabin pressurization that was manufactured for commercial use after World War II and also holds the honor of being the first private aircraft used during a United States presidential campaign, dramatically changing the future of political campaigning. Caroline served the Kennedy family for nine years and 650,000 miles, ending her run at Washington National Airport where she was donated to the Smithsonian Institution on November 17, 1967. Senator Robert F. Kennedy presented the plane to Smithsonian Secretary S. Dillon Ripley and was accompanied by brother Edward M. Kennedy and other members of the Kennedy clan. The Caroline is currently in storage at the National Air and Space Museum’s Paul E. Garber Preservation, Restoration, and Storage Facility. Click through the slideshow below to see images from the presentation of the Caroline to the Smithsonian.
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