“I am acutely aware that you have not elected me as your president with your ballots, and so I ask you to confirm me as your president with your prayers.”

– President Gerald R. Ford, Swearing-in Address, 8/9/74

  • He was the 40th vice president and not elected but appointed after the resignation of Agnew
  • He was the 38th president and not elected but succeeded Nixon after his resignation
  • He was born Leslie Lynch King Jr
  • He was a football player at University of Michigan and as president insisted the Marine Band play the Michigan fight song which begins “Hail to the Victors” instead of “Hail to the Chief”
  • He set a new relaxed tone in the White House and allowed a new level of access to reporters and photographers

We were very excited to see a replica cabinet room. The name plates were exactly as they were in his presidency.

Sitting in Jerry’s seat getting my picture taken with Jerry’s camera!

Kristi was really excited about this room

We love learning the Secret Service code names for all our presidents and their families

Many neat things happened in his short presidency

His wife’s involvement in the ‘76 campaign was super cute

Fun slogans

So, funny story… Kristi’s first political memory was in kindergarten in 1976 at Trinity Methodist Kindergarten in Beaumont, Texas. They handed out a full sheet for the students to “vote” in the ‘76 election. It had a half page picture of Carter and a half page picture of Ford and a big square by each. The students were to mark their favorite with an X. Kristi remembers going home and hearing her parent’s very surprised reaction that she had chosen Carter. It made an impression. She realized early on how important politics were. She has had a lifelong interest and was finally able to make amends “in person” to Ford for not voting for him in ‘76. In her defense, at the time she chose Carter because he had a kinder looking face. (Kindergarten Kristi below for reference)

Circa 1976

Outside the graves of Gerald & Betty Ford