LBJ Library head Mark Updegrove moderates a discussion between David Kennerly (center) and Eric Draper (right).LBJ Library head Mark Updegrove moderates a discussion between David Kennerly (center) and Eric Draper (right).

Capturing History with White House Photographers

    Two men who had tremendous access to the White House spoke at the Nixon Library Thursday evening about their unique opportunity to chronicle the American Presidency with their cameras.

    Pulitzer Prize-winner Kennerly was President Ford’s White House photographer and gave a whirlwind history lesson of presidential photography from the first president to ever be photographed, John Quincy Adams to our current Commander in Chief.

    Looking back on his early career, Kennerly noted that his first ride aboard Air Force One was with President Nixon in 1970 on a flight from D.C. to San Clemente when he worked for Time Magazine.

    Eric Draper, who was White House Photo Director and personal photographer for President George W. Bush, said that one of his first assignments as a reporter for the Associated Press was President Nixon’s State Services at the Nixon Library in 1994.

    Draper recounted the dramatic events of being at the President Bush’s side on September 11, 2001. “I had to remove the blanket of shock and focus on the job,” he said. “My job was to not miss anything.”

    The program was moderated by Mark Updegrove, Director of the LBJ Library.

    Watch the whole video below: