JFK50 will feature Dyer exhibits at WCSU

DANBURY, CONN. — The 50th anniversary of the election and inauguration of President John F. Kennedy will be celebrated with the observation of JFK50, two events in the Ruth Haas Library on the Western Connecticut State University Midtown campus, 181 White St., Danbury.

Starting at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 9, the anniversary of Kennedy’s election, former Danbury Mayor James E. Dyer, a collector of Kennedy memorabilia since the age of 10, will show authentic campaign and inauguration artifacts, Kennedy election fliers, JFK autographs and other items.

At 11 a.m. on Thursday, Feb. 3, Dyer will display inaugural memorabilia and give a talk about his recollections of Kennedy, followed by a lecture by Dr. Marcy May, WCSU professor of history and non-western cultures, on Kennedy’s influence on the country. Light refreshments will be served.

Both events are free and open to the public.

“This collection has been fun to compile over the years and has historical significance,” Dyer said. “I met a lot of wonderful people at collection shows, including Caroline Kennedy and John F. Kennedy Jr. at Municipal Arts Society of New York events. It’s been an exciting dance with history.”

Dyer has shown his collection throughout New York City and the Northeast; Washington, D.C.; and California. These two exhibits will conclude 46 years of display, and Dyer said he will not show them again. Dyer is a 1972 WCSU graduate and a former member of the Connecticut State University System Board of Trustees.

Kennedy was notable as the first Catholic to be elected president. He is remembered for approving the disastrous “Bay of Pigs” invasion of Cuba as well as for a successful confrontation with the USSR over nuclear missiles in Cuba. Kennedy was assassinated during his third year in office.

Dyer, who was mayor from 1979 to 1987, is in the process of donating his mayoral and personal papers to the university. The Dyer collection is not affiliated with the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum.

For more information, call the Office of University Relations at (203) 837-8486.

 

Western Connecticut State University offers outstanding faculty in a range of quality academic programs. Our diverse university community provides students an enriching and supportive environment that takes advantage of the unique cultural offerings of Western Connecticut and New York. Our vision: To be an affordable public university with the characteristics of New England’s best small private universities.

 

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