PRESIDENT GERALD R. FORD - PROGRAM SIGNED - HFSID 157456
Sale Price $342.00
Gerald R. Ford signs a program for the state visit of Giovanni Leone, the President of the Republic of Italy, and his wife on Wednesday, September 25, 1974.
Program signed: "Gerald R. Ford" on verso, 2p, 4½x6¼ card. Headed: "Program". Program for the state visit of Giovanni Leone, the President of the Republic of Italy, and his wife on Wednesday, September 25, 1974. The Italian President was scheduled to arrive at the President's Park (Ellipse) by helicopter and proceed by car to the White House. There, the visitors were to be greeted by President and Mrs. Ford, Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and his wife, "His Excellency Dr. Guillermo Sevilla-Sacasa, Dean of the Diplomatic Corps, and other officials." Over the next half hour, "Military honors are rendered", the national anthems of Italy and the U.S. were played, there was a 21-gun salute and an inspection of the Honor Guard. President Ford then welcomed President Leone, who gave a brief message before the two Presidents met at the White House at 11:30 a.m. GIOVANNI LEONE (1908-2001) served as President of the Republic from 1971-1978. He had previously been the Italian Prime Minister for several months in 1963 and 1968. His wife was the former VITTORIA MICCHITTO. This visit took place about six weeks after GERALD FORD (1913-2006) had become President following the resignation of Richard Nixon on August 4, 1974. Ford had served as Nixon's Vice President (1973-1974) following the resignation of Vice President Spiro Agnew, becoming the only man to have held both of the nation's highest offices without being elected to either. Previously a U.S. Congressman from Michigan (1949-1973; Minority Leader, 1965-1973), Ford lost his bid for election to a full four-year term partially as a result of his controversial pardon of his predecessor. Ford, who was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1999, celebrated his 93rd birthday on July 14, 2006. Before his death on December 26, 2006, Ford had surpassed Ronald Reagan (who also lived to age 93) to become the longest-lived former U.S. President. Slightly soiled. Number written (unknown hand) in pencil at upper left corner of signature side. Fine condition.
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