Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Nixon's Christmas Morning Call to LBJ in 1971

There's no music in today's clip, but it's a rather fascinating piece of audio nevertheless. This is a recording of a short phone call from President Richard Nixon in the White House to former President Johnson on his Texas ranch on Christmas Day 1971. Johnson sounds like he's having a terrific time with his family, as he's laughing and talks about being surrounded by toys. Nixon, on the other hand, sounds about as awkward and ill-at-ease as ever. Mrs. Nixon is apparently elsewhere. Lady Bird Johnson's mention of Mrs. Eisenhower suggests that she may have been spending the holidays at the White House. Former President Eisenhower died two years earlier, and, of course, her grandson, David, was married to Nixon's youngest daughter, Julie. Things would slide downhill rather quickly for both men after this. Johnson's health declined rapidly in 1972 and he suffered a fatal heart attack in January 1973. Nixon visited China and won re-election in 1972, but the Watergate break-in took place in June, and by early 1973, his administration had begun to unravel. Give this tape a listen. It's not often that we get to listen to them instead of the other way around. (Apologies for the volume on the Texas side of the call. You have to turn the volume up pretty high to hear President Johnson, although Nixon comes through loud and clear. I guess he's got more experience with taping devices than most other presidents.)

1 comment:

  1. Merry Christmas and Best Wishes for a Happy New Year!
    Bring you Good wishes of happiness.

    Sorry for greeting you earlier,, just don't want miss saying this.
    By the way, I'm clotee. I am blogger too, and now try my best luck to open an e-store. Nice to know you.