Hearse that carried body of JFK featured at Hill City museum

Hearse that carried body of JFK featured at Hill City museum
Published: Sep. 15, 2021 at 5:58 PM CDT
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HILL CITY, Kan. (KWCH) - An auto and art museum in northwest Kansas has a unique piece of American history on display.

At Tebo’s Corner, cars catch visitors’ eyes. Open since April, the Graham County Auto and Art Museum has been a hot new attraction in Hill City. About $250,000 from 30 sponsors have been donated to get the museum up and running. Hill City native Stephen Tebo is one of those donors. He also loaned five of his cars from his personal collection.

Phyllis Weller, a Graham County Auto and Arts Museum board member, says visitors have come from 19 states and other countries, the farthest away being Sweden.

“Seven hundred people that have come through this museum are about 700 people that come to our town and spend money in our town,” Weller said. “Any time we have a small community, we have to do anything that we can to bring people in.”

The main attraction of the auto and arts museum is a 1964 Miller-Meteor classic Cadillac hearse that was used to transport President John F. Kennedy’s body from Parkland Memorial Hospital to Air Force One in Dallas after his assassination. Inside the vehicle is where Kennedy’s casket rested.

“It’s unbelievable with a car like that, that is sitting here in northwest Kansas,” Graham County Auto and Arts Museum board member Ray Toll said. “Every time I walk by it, I just stare at it and think, ‘what history took place in that car?’”

The entry fee to see the piece of history in Hill City is $5, but the hearse won’t be there for long. It is scheduled to leave the Graham County museum in a few weeks. Three cars from the movie, “Paper Moon” and a car prop found in the movie, “Tucker” are also on display at the museum. The Graham County Auto and Arts Museum is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays an from noon to 4 p.m. Sundays.

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