The records contained in the John Fitzgerald Kennedy Library in Boston provide a comprehensive view of national government between 1961 and 1963 and more reliable data on the workings of the executive branch than is available for any preceding administration. Unlike earlier presidential libraries, which began their collecting after the president had served for some time or even left office, the Kennedy Library began to solicit material before JFK was inaugurated. As a result, the library was able to obtain copies of actual working files from various departments, rather than sanitized documentation produced after the fact.
The collection consists of two main types of records: the papers of the departments or agencies under the Kennedy administration, and the papers of Walter W. Heller, chairman of the President's Council of Economic Advisers (CEA). Researchers seeking solid data on the operations of the expanding federal machinery of the 1960s will rely heavily on this collection.
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