First TV Presidential News Conference 56 Years Ago
History was made on January 25, 1961, when President John F. Kennedy became the first U.S. president to hold a live televised news conference. He spoke from a podium in the auditorium of the U.S. State Department. He began with a prepared statement covering famine in the Congo, negotiations for an atomic test ban treaty, and the release of two American pilots from Russian custody, After that, he took questions from reporters on various subjects ranging from voting rights, food aid to poverty stricken Americans and U.S.-Cuban relations.
Although he must have been nervous, reports say he acted very calm and answered the reporters questions with a show of great intelligence, defining a presidential image in the age of mass media.