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Nixon’s 1960 visit to York, No. 2: Dick’s stop eventful, newsy

Practically every president who has visited York County leaves some memorable mark. That includes Richard M. Nixon’s October 1960 whistle stop visit. Notice the headline telling about the mass suspension of Dallastown students. For a working list of past presidential visits, click here. Background posts: Why did JFK lose to Nixon in York County? and JFK’s visit to York County a long-remembered event and York Gazette: President Zachary Taylor lost sense of propriety during visit.
Richard Nixon made York part of history in including it along his desperate and well-chronicled 11th-hour quest for the White House in 1960.
His stop has largely faded from York County’s memory, overshadowed by JFK’s York Fair visit weeks earlier.
His visit, like most presidential visits to York County, spawned lots of side stories. His confusion of two local candidates, George Goodling and Stanley Gross, is one of them.
His visit also reportedly attracted a cadre of Dallastown Area High School students, which led to their suspension… .

Some returned in the afternoon, after the Nixon train moved on.
Some did not.
Dallastown Principal Clair A. Trout commented on absent students: “For all we know, they may have gone to Pittsburgh (the scheduled end of the GOP candidate’s itinerary yesterday) or maybe they were involved in an accident … we don’t know.”
Here is a sampling of other memorable presidential moments on York County soil:
– Zachary Taylor upset
one side of his bi-partisan
hosts by reportedly giving a
partisan speech in 1849.
– Abraham Lincoln’s train
arrived in 1861 sans Abe, dis´
appointing a large crowd. Re´
ports about suspected
violence toward Lincoln
caused the re-booking of his
trip from Harrisburg to Wash´
ington, D.C.
– In a 1920 stop, candi´
date Warren G. Harding
opened his speech by intro´
ducing his wife, Florence, as
“the boss.”
– In a 1960 visit to the
York Fair, John F. Kennedy
reached in his wallet for a $10
bill to buy $1 bricks for the
Salvation Army’s new citadel.
The millionaire’s wallet was
empty, but $10 miraculously
appeared from his staff.
– In a moment of candor
during a northern York
County campaign visit to
stump for U.S. Sen. Arlen
Specter in 1992, President
George H.W. Bush pro´
claimed: “This is not a normal
kind of endorsement. I really
mean it.”
But some visits have been
memorable for their moments
of insight.
Here’s one from York pho´
tographer Bill Schintz, who
witnessed Georgia Gov.
Jimmy Carter’s campaign visit
to Lewisberry in 1974:
On the bus and running
late for his next stop, Carter
made the driver stop.
He got out to talk with a
boy in a wheelchair. The
future president told the boy
he had a nephew like him and
asked to say a prayer with the
“He knelt down and
prayed,” Schintz recalled. “No
one else was there.”
For numerous additional posts on presidential visits, click here.