YORBA LINDA (CNS) – An exhibit celebrating the centennial of the birth of Richard Nixon will open today at his presidential library in Yorba Linda, depicting his life from its humble beginnings to becoming the 37th president.
Nixon’s oldest daughter, Tricia Nixon Cox, and David Ferriero, the archivist of the United States, will participate in a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 11 a.m.
“Patriot. President. Peacemaker.” encompasses five main theme’s of Nixon’s life:
– “RN: How American” deals with his early life, upbringing, education and service in the U.S. Navy during World War II. The bench he sat on while a member of the Whittier College football team, letters he sent his wife Pat when they were separated during the war, and the desk he built with his father for use in his Whittier law office are displayed.
– “RN: In The Arena” begins with Nixon’s first run for Congress in 1946 and continues through the 1960 presidential campaign. It includes the Checkers Speech, the first television broadcast to appeal directly to the American voters, and a re-creation of the 1950s-era American kitchen exhibited in Moscow where Nixon debated Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev on the merits of freedom versus communism.
– “RN: Creating a More Just Society” includes previously unseen interviews with Nixon as he explains the decision behind his domestic policies ranging from the New Federalism programs designed to “return power to the people,” along with groundbreaking environmental legislation, desegregation of Southern schools and returning to native Americans much of their former lands.
– “RN: Peacemaker” recounts Nixon’s ending U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War, opening relations with China and detente with the Soviet Union, averting a U.S.-Soviet clash in the Middle East while providing vital aid to Israel during the Yom Kippur War, and diplomatic efforts with the Arab world,
– “RN: Elder Statesman” covers the time after the Watergate scandal following Nixon’s resignation as president, when he made 13 international trips to more than 20 nations from 1976 to 1994 and was consulted by all his successors. The exhibit includes newly declassed national security documents revealing how Nixon advised then-President Bill Clinton on the shaping of the post-Cold War world.
The 100th anniversary of Nixon’s birth was on Jan. 9, but the exhibit is opening today in connection with the start of Presidents Day weekend. Admission today is free.
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