John F. Kennedy Presidential Museum & Library, Boston

#3 of 322 in Museums in Massachusetts
History Museum · Library
John F. Kennedy Presidential Museum & Library documents the life, career, and story of one of America's most well-known leaders through a collection of archives, exhibitions, and materials. You’ll see an array of memorabilia, photographs, and personal belongings spread out over seven permanent exhibits, including those focused on JFK's political career, the Space Race, and the Kennedy family. You’ll want to catch the series of films welcoming you to the center, one is narrated by JFK himself, and another documents the Cuban missile crisis. Originally opened in 1979, the complex was designed as the official home of records and papers pertaining to Kennedy's administration and government. Consult the museum’s website to create your itinerary before you go, because the complex is extensive. Make John F. Kennedy Presidential Museum & Library a centerpiece of your Boston vacation itinerary, and find what else is worth visiting using our Boston trip maker app.
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John F. Kennedy Presidential Museum & Library reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
3,921 reviews
  • First off, I’ll warn you to get tickets ASAP if you plan on going because they are limited right now due to COVID and go fast, especially when large tour groups buy in bulk. However, my aunt called...  more »
  • Just recently reopened. This is a fascinating museum, especially for anyone who is a Kennedy fan and remembers that era, as well as those interested in history and politics. The harbor views behind...  more »
  • Stunningly beautiful building with harbor views. Museum offers informative film prior to exhibits. Having now visited seven presidential libraries, we found this one average, with very little interactive tools to enrich our experience, especially for my younger children. Could also use a more detailed cultural backdrop: music, film, poetry. Tour guides--or docents-- who provide context might also be helpful. Overall, well worth the visit.
  • The library is easily accessible by train-- get off the metro at the JFK/UMass stop, and walk about a mile there (or maybe investigate a shuttle or bus). You can take the harbor route, or walk along Mt Vernon St. My family and I visited this library and museum, dedicated to one of our most duty-bound and integrity-filled presidents. I left feeling truly inspired and introspective. Artifacts, quotes, speeches, documents, films and commentary tell the story of a truly great man's life. Major exhibits focus on his childhood and schooling, his family, the campaign and inauguration, the first family's impact on the White House, his foreign and domestic policies, the Peace Corps, and his assassination. I did not see any major explanation or details examining the story behind that tragic event. JFK suffered from almost every serious childhood illness, yet became a decorated war veteran in WWII. He was endearing and charismatic. He promoted Civil Rights for African Americans, in a time when that sentiment was unpopular; believing that our constitution could not support discrimination --as all the "whites only" establishments did. His speeches were inspiring and memorable. I highly recommend taking the tour, which was free with our entrance fee. Sign up for the tour near the front desk You will get to know the man, his wife- First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy, and his presidency. One of the best historical museums I have visited by far.

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