Skip to main content

Alex Arroyos / John F. Kennedy Photographs

Identifier: MSS 0255

Scope and Contents

Collection consists of forty one, 8x10, black-and-white photographs taken by Alex Arroyos. Images are of President John F. Kennedy, Jackie Kennedy, Vice President Lyndon Johnson, and Lady Bird Johnson attending a meeting of LULAC (League of United Latin American Citizens) at the Rice Hotel in Houston on the night of November 21, 1963.


  • November 21, 1963

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research. However, to preserve the original photographs, access will be provided by digital surrogates when possible.

Use Restrictions

Permission to publish or reproduce materials from MSS 0255 Alex Arroyos/John F. Kennedy Photographs must be obtained from the Houston Metropolitan Research Center or the appropriate copyright holder.

Biographical / Historical

On November 21, 1963, President John F. Kennedy attended a reception in Houston, Texas sponsored by the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC). That night is widely recognized as the first time a US president acknowledged Latinos as a significant voting bloc. Three years earlier, Kennedy had received an unprecedented eighty five percent of the Mexican American vote to win the 1960 presidential election. For many Mexican American activists and leaders, the 1960 presidential election was seen as a chance to influence politics on a national stage. LULAC, the largest Latino civil rights group at that time, joined the effort to form Viva Kennedy clubs. Independent state Democratic Party committees, the Viva Kennedy clubs prompted the consolidation of the Latino vote and helped Kennedy win. John J. Herrera, Houston lawyer and past LULAC president, tried to revitalize the Viva Kennedy club movement when he invited Kennedy to the LULAC State Director's Ball at the Rice Hotel in Houston on November 21, 1963. The President was scheduled to be in Houston for a testimonial dinner for a Harris County legislator. Kennedy accepted the LULAC invitation over a thousand others. President Kennedy, First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy, Vice President Lyndon Baines Johnson and Lady Bird Johnson spent seventeen minutes with the LULACs. Following a speech made by her husband praising the efforts of LULAC, Jackie Kennedy thrilled the crowd by speaking in Spanish. A mariachi band proceeded to serenade the presidential party. Just fifteen hours after his historic visit in Houston, President Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas.


1 Linear Feet (2 boxes)

Language of Materials



Photos are organized chronologically.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated by Alex Arroyos in 1984.

Digitized Materials

Images from this collection have been digitized and are available on the Houston Public Library Digital Archives at

Andrew Hempe
October 1998
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Houston Metropolitan Research Center Repository


The African American Library at the Gregory School
1300 Victor Street
Houston, Texas 77019
Houston Metropolitan Research Center
Houston Public Library
550 McKinney St.
Houston, Texas 77002