UNVEILED: Richard Nixon’s love letters | books | Hindustan Times
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UNVEILED: Richard Nixon’s love letters

Richard Nixon’s love letters to his wife Patricia Ryan will go on public display this week. The letters, sent during their two-year courtship reveal how the the US President was smitten with Ryan.

books Updated: Mar 13, 2012 07:55 IST

Richard Nixon’s love letters to his wife Patricia Ryan, will go on public display this week.

The US President died in 1994 aged 81, a year after his wife. The letters will go on display at the Richard Nixon Presidential Library and Museum, in Yorba Linda, California - in the house where he was born.

Six of the dozens of romantic missives he sent to Ryan during their two-year courtship are due to be unveiled on Friday to mark what would have been her 100th birthday.

They are said to show a softer side to the man who became infamous when he resigned from the White House in disgrace in August 1974 over the Watergate affair.

The couple met while auditioning for a community theatre production of ‘The Dark Tower’ in the town of Whittier, southern California.

An obviously smitten Nixon writes, “Every day and every night I want to see you and be with you”.

“Yet I have no feeling of selfish ownership or jealousy. Let’s go for a long ride Sunday; let’s go to the mountains weekends;

let’s read books in front of fires; most of all, let’s really grow together and find the happiness we know is ours”.

Another letter reads “Somehow on Tuesday there was something electric in the usually almost stifling air in Whittier.

“And now I know. An Irish gypsy who radiates all that is happy and beautiful was there.

“She left behind her a note addressed to a struggling barrister who looks from a window and dreams.

“And in that note he found sunshine and flowers, and a great spirit which only great ladies can inspire.”

Nixon’s supporters hope the letters, written between 1938 and 1940, will show that the 37th president of the United States had a poetic side to his nature, experiencing true love with his wife.

“These letters are fabulous. It’s a totally different person from the Watergate tapes that people know,” the Telegraph quoted curator Olivia Anastasiadis as saying.

Nixon proposed to Ryan as they stood on cliffs overlooking the Pacific Ocean, presenting her with an engagement ring in a basket filled with mayflowers.

Robert Bostock, from the Richard Nixon Foundation, which is co-sponsoring the exhibit, said that the Nixons’ love affair continued to their death.

“She was with him the whole way; she never lost faith in him.

“Her feeling was that it was the country’s loss when he had to resign, that he had accomplished so much good and had so much more good to accomplish,” he said.