The VC-137B/C Stratoliner is a modified version of the Boeing 707 commercial intercontinental airliner that, for many years, was the presidential aircraft. The VC-137B/C body is identical to that of the Boeing 707, but has different interior furnishings and electronic equipment.
In 1962, the first jet aircraft to be specifically purchased for use as "Air Force One," a VC-137B, entered service with the tail number 26000. It is perhaps the most widely known and has the most historical significance of the presidential aircraft. Tail number 26000 is the aircraft that carried President John F. Kennedy to Dallas, Nov. 22, 1963, and in which his body was returned to Washington, D.C., following his assassination. Lyndon B. Johnson was sworn into office as the 36th president of the United States on board 26000 at Love Field in Dallas. This fateful aircraft also was used to return President Johnson's body to Texas following his state funeral on Jan. 24, 1973. In 1972, President Richard M. Nixon made historic visits aboard 26000 to the People's Republic of China in February and to the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics in May.