On the eighth day of August, 1974, America was shaken by something that had never happened in its 198-year history as a country: the resignation of a president.
After more than a year of pressure related to his involvement in the cover-up of the Watergate break-in scandal, Richard Milhous Nixon, the 37th president of the United States of America, resigned from office.
There were a couple of odd coincidences, too.
In the opening of his farewell address, Nixon stated that it was the 37th time he had spoken from the White House.
Aug. 8 was also the anniversary of Nixon and running mate Spiro Agnew winning the 1968 presidential nomination for the Republican Party.
On the same day in 1973, Vice President Agnew was hit with allegation that he was involved in bribery, extortion and tax evasion during his time as the governor of Maryland. Agnew insisted that he was innocent, but ended up resigning in October. Sen. Gerald Ford replaced him.
Nixon’s departure also meant that for the first time in American history, not one person had voted the president or vice president into office. Ford and his vice president, Nelson Rockefeller, were both appointed to their positions.
Watch Nixon’s resignation speech and weigh in with your memories of it in the comments below:
Here’s the entire text of Nixon’s speech:
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