University Archives

Lot 121

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JFK Assassination Aftermath, Judge Sarah T. Hughes: "…I am the first woman to ever swear in a United States President"

1p typed letter signed by Sarah T. Hughes (1896-1985), the U.S. District Judge for the Northern District of Texas who swore in Lyndon B. Johnson, as "Sarah T. Hughes" at center. The document dated April 13, 1967 is on watermarked stationery with "United States District Court / Northern District of Texas / Dallas 75221" letterhead. With expected light paper folds, and minor paper clip impressions at top. Else near fine. 8" x 9.875".

In response to New Jersey collector Roy Hensel's inquiry, Judge Hughes wrote in part: "It is a fact that I am the first woman to ever swear in a United States President. Also, all of the swearing-in ceremony of President Johnson was taped on a taped recorder." (The autographed card that Judge Hughes mentions in her letter is not included within the lot.)

Hughes officiated over the first inauguration of 36th U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson (1908-1973) on November 22, 1963 aboard Air Force One, just a little over one hour after 35th U.S. President John F. Kennedy (1917-1963) was declared dead at Dallas's Parkland Memorial Hospital. Hughes was the first and only woman ever to swear in a U.S. President. (This task is usually reserved for the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.)

Hughes served as a District Judge for the Northern District of Texas between 1961-1975.

A remarkable piece of Kennedyiana!

This item comes with a Certificate from John Reznikoff, a premier authenticator for both major 3rd party authentication services, PSA and JSA (James Spence Authentications), as well as numerous auction houses.


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June 10, 2020 10:30 AM EDT

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