JFK Exhibit: Reconstruction Film
Independent Films, Documentaries, Public Domain
"JFK Exhibit: Reconstruction Film is a silent Standard 8 mm color home movie of the presidential motorcade of John F. Kennedy through Dealey Plaza in Dallas, Texas, on November 22, 1963, filmed by a private citizen named Abraham Zapruder. The film is the most complete visual recording of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.
Zapruder filmed the Presidential motorcade while being steadied by his receptionist, Marilyn Sitzman, standing on top of the most western of the two concrete pedestals that extend from the John Neely Bryan north pergola concrete structure overlooking Elm Street in Dealey Plaza, Dallas, Texas at 12:30 pm Central Standard Time, November 22, 1963. The film depicts the presidential limousine from the time it completed its turn onto Elm Street until it passed out of view under a railway overpass. Of greatest notoriety is the film's depiction of a fatal shot to President Kennedy's head when his limousine was almost exactly in front of and slightly below Zapruder's position.
Zapruder filmed the scene with a Model 414 PD Bell & Howell Zoomatic Director Series Camera that operated via a spring-wound mechanism. The FBI later tested Zapruder's camera and found that it filmed an average of 18.3 frames per second (slightly deviating from the camera's standard frame rate of 18 frame/s). The entire film sequence depicting events in Dealey Plaza consists of 486 frames, or 26.6 seconds. The presidential limousine can be seen in 343 of the frames, or 18.7 seconds. The film is recorded on Kodak Kodachrome II 8 mm movie safety film (standard 8 mm, shot on 16 mm film holding two strips of images, then split into two 8mm strips after processing).
The film was examined by the Warren Commission and all subsequent investigations into the assassination. The Zapruder frames used by the Warren Commission were published in black and white as Commission Exhibit 885 in volume XVIII of the Hearings and Exhibits. Frames of the film have also been published in several magazines, and the film was featured in several movies. Copies of the complete film are available on the Internet.
In 1994, the Zapruder film footage was deemed "culturally significant" by the United States Library of Congress and was selected for permanent preservation in the National Film Registry."
Year of Production: 1963
Country: United States
- Abraham Zapruder