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Gerald Ford

When Gerald R. Ford took the oath of office on August 9, 1974, he declared, "I assume the Presidency under extraordinary circumstances.... This is an hour of history that troubles our minds and hurts our hearts." It was indeed an unprecedented time. He had been the first Vice President chosen under the terms of the Twenty-fifth Amendment and, in the aftermath of the Watergate scandal, was succeeding the first President ever to resign.


Lesson Plans | Primary Sources |

 

Lesson Plans:

The Life of a President - In this lesson, students learn about Gerald Ford’s presidency and other accomplishments through research and through historical articles. They then create posters comparing the information provided in the articles with current assessments of his legacy offered in his New York Times obituary.
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A Heartbeat from the Presidency: The Role of the Vice President - The purpose of this lesson is to acquaint students with the Constitutional requirements and rules regarding the Vice Presidency and to give them a chance to research the ways in which past Vice Presidents have become Presidents.


Primary Source Documents:

Gerald Ford Online Documents, Photographs and Exhibits - Although the Ford Library staff has made no attempt to systematically scan entire collections (with one small exception), a number of exhibits, documents and photographs are available.

Gerald R. Ford's Remarks on Taking the Oath of Office as President - "The oath that I have taken is the same oath that was taken by George Washington and by every President under the Constitution. But I assume the Presidency under extraordinary circumstances never before experienced by Americans. This is an hour of history that troubles our minds and hurts our hearts"...<more>

Gerald R. Ford on Pardoning Richard Nixon
- On September 8, 1974, one month after President Richard Nixon resigned the presidency amid the Watergate scandal, his successor, President Gerald R. Ford, announced his decision to grant Nixon a full pardon for any crimes he may have committed while in office. Link includes Page 1 and Page 2 of the pardon.


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Gerald R. Ford Library and Museum
Gerald Ford's Biography