AP Was There
With bureaus around the globe and a history that dates back to 1846, The Associated Press has long enjoyed a reach that goes unmatched. If there's a major breaking news event somewhere in the world, chances are AP covered it. With that in mind we present AP Was There, an occasional feature that revisits news events as they appeared in text, photo and video.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Associated Press Hollywood reporter Bob Thomas was on a one-night political assignment in June 1968 to cover Sen. Robert F. Kennedy's victory in the California presidential primary when mayhem unfolded before his eyes.
Nancy Shipley was working in a news office in Nashville, Tennessee, when the call came 50 years ago. Gene Herrick was in Chicago routing photos to newspapers when his phone rang. Jack Thornell got the call in New Orleans; Kathryn Johnson heard the news in Atlanta.
Together, over the next few days, the four helped The Associated Press inform the world about the stunning news that the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. had been assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee.
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — In the spring of 1968, the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. had won victories on desegregation and voting rights and had been planning his Poor People's Campaign when he turned his attention to Memphis, the gritty city by the Mississippi River. In his support for striking sanitation workers, King wanted to lead marches and show that nonviolent protest still worked.
But on April 4, at the city's Lorraine Motel, he would be fatally shot.
AP WAS THERE: The Vietnam War’s Tet Offensive
EDITOR'S NOTE — Early on the morning of Jan. 31, 1968, as Vietnamese celebrated the Lunar New Year, or Tet as it is known locally, Communist forces launched a wave of coordinated surprise attacks across South Vietnam. The campaign — one of the largest of the Vietnam War — led to intense fighting and heavy casualties in cities and towns across the South.
AP Was There: The 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center
EDITOR'S NOTE — On Feb. 26, 1993, a group of Islamic terrorists drove a rented van into the underground parking garage at the World Trade Center and set off a 1,200 pound bomb in a failed attempt to collapse the twin towers. The blast didn't cause the destruction its planners intended. But it opened up a multi-story crater in the building, injured more than 1,000 people and ultimately killed six. In the immediate aftermath of the attack, investigators didn't know much about who might be...
AP Was There: Charles Manson, followers guilty of slayings
LOS ANGELES (AP) — EDITOR'S NOTE — On Jan. 26, 1971, Charles Manson and three members of his California cult were convicted for the murders of seven people, including pregnant actress Sharon Tate.
The Associated Press is republishing a version of its original report about the conviction by Linda Deutsch, who covered the trial that lasted from late 1969 into 1971.
AP Was There: The Assassination of President Kennedy
EDITOR'S NOTE — On Nov. 22, 1963, President John F. Kennedy was assassinated while visiting Texas with his wife.
AP photographer James "Ike" Altgens was near the president, and relayed the news to Dallas bureau chief Bob Johnson, who filed the first AP news bulletin on the shooting.
It read: "President Kennedy was shot today just as his motorcade left downtown Dallas. Mrs. Kennedy jumped up and grabbed Mr. Kennedy. She cried, "Oh, no!" The motorcade sped on."