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The Kennedy Family Collection, no. 2 - Mardi Gras in New Orleans (1969)

James Kennedy

Silent | 1969

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  •  King Rex 
  •  Astronauts on a Genesis Through Gemini float 
  •  A brontosaurus float 
  •  King Tut on the bow of a float 
  •  The Cat and the Canary 
  •  The Kennedy kids pose in their Mardi Gras costumes - lederhosen 
  •  The Times-Picayune headlines announcing the Rex King and Queen 
  •  Television coverage of the Rex Ball 
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This home movie captures scenes of the Kennedy family in New Orleans for Mardi Gras in 1969. The theme for the Rex Parade that year was “Genesis Through Gemini,” likely referencing NASA’s Project Gemini and capitalizing on the country’s enthusiasm for the space program that decade. Elaborate floats, still built on wooden wagons, pass the excited members of the crowd who wave their hands wildly for Mardi Gras beads. Following, the Kennedy family records the television as highlights of the Rex Ball, another Mardi Gras event, are broadcast. In the era before VCRs and DVRs, a person who wanted to record an event off of the television could do so by pointing the film camera towards the screen. Events captured in this manner tend to be significant world events that the filmmaker felt strongly about saving for the future.