How Richard Nixon as soon as despatched the Queen a guide on English language ‘talking strategies’

Every US president has needed to navigate daunting protocols and etiquette throughout royal encounters. Within the case of President Richard Nixon, who visited with the Queen a number of instances, there have been a number of moments of awkwardness stretching from small speak to the gown code, even amid the smiling photos of glamorous encounters.

Nixon was a royal admirer who as soon as despatched the Queen a guide stuffed with recommendations on successfully speaking in English.

On one other event he needed to scrounge for a jacket to satisfy the Queen’s want for a much less formal gown code. The one I discovered did not match proper. Then he informed the Queen about it.

And there’s the notorious incident of Nixon reportedly attempting to arrange Prince Charles along with his daughter, Tricia.

Nixon’s choice to ship the Queen a guide on English would possibly look like an odd gesture for somebody who was identified for her diction and command of the language.

However the Queen appeared to reciprocate after their first assembly. She as soon as gushed a couple of ‘pleasant’ meal they spent collectively and penned casual correspondence referring to the president as ‘Mr. Nixon,’ a by no means previously-published doc obtained by reveals.

The Queen thanked Pat Nixon for a ‘pleasant ceremonial dinner’ in a 1958 letter. Richard Nixon was a royal fan who met the Queen on a number of events

Nixon first met the Queen on a go to to London when he was vice chairman. He would later host the Queen after which host Prince Philip on a stag go to throughout his time within the White Home.

(On that 1969 go to, it was Prince Philip who felt out of types. He later wrote Nixon apologizing for giving a ‘lame’ toast on the star-studded occasion, as beforehand reported).

Nixon wrote the Queen in October 1957 to move on a duplicate of a guide they mentioned at a luncheon. The guide was The Artwork of Readable Writing, by Rudolf Flesch.

‘I assumed you would possibly discover a few of Mr. Fleisch’s quite startling concepts amusing, in view of our dialogue of talking strategies,’ he informed her, in a letter he signed ‘Respectfully yours.’

Nixon sent the Queen a book on 'plain talk' and 'readable writing'

Nixon despatched the Queen a guide on ‘plain speak’ and ‘readable writing’

It’s amongst a trove of fabric about Nixon and the Queen held on the Nixon Library in California.

The Nixons greeted the Queen that 12 months when she visited Washington and made her first journey to the US as Sovereign.

Nixon wrote the Queen in a proper typed letter thanking her and Prince Philip for ‘valued mementoes,’ ‘good-looking autographed images’ and ‘nice conferences throughout your memorable days in Washington.’

However he additionally pointed to their ‘heat friendliness and attraction and our enjoyment of the moments we have been privileged to share.’

By the next 12 months, the connection between the Nixons and the Queen appeared to have grown nearer, after the Nixons hosted the Queen for a particular Thanksgiving dinner on the American ambassador’s residence in London.

The Queen thanked the Nixons for hosting a dinner at the US ambassador's residence in London.  Nixon had to borrow a dinner jacket, according to his daughter Julie Eisenhower Nixon

The Queen thanked the Nixons for internet hosting a dinner on the US ambassador’s residence in London. Nixon needed to borrow a dinner jacket, in response to his daughter Julie Eisenhower Nixon

Nixon and the Queen bonded over a traditional Thanksgiving meal

Nixon and the Queen bonded over a conventional Thanksgiving meal

Nixon attended the dedication of the American Chapel at St. Paul's Cathedral in London

Nixon attended the dedication of the American Chapel at St. Paul’s Cathedral in London

Nixon sat along a copy of a book with 'startling ideas' about English

Nixon sat alongside a duplicate of a guide with ‘startling concepts’ about English

Nixon thanked the Queen for autographed photos on a 'significant 1957 State Visit'

Nixon thanked the Queen for autographed images on a ‘important 1957 State Go to’

The Queen visited the Capitol on her first trip to the US as Sovereign

The Queen visited the Capitol on her first journey to the US as Sovereign

A State Department memo gave detailed instructions on where Nixon should turn

A State Division memo gave detailed directions on the place Nixon ought to flip

Nixon had to find a dinner jacket 'in a hurry' when hosting the Queen at the US Ambassador's residence in London

Nixon needed to discover a dinner jacket ‘in a rush’ when internet hosting the Queen on the US Ambassador’s residence in London

Luckily, aide Jim Bassett was Nixon's size (almost)

Fortunately, aide Jim Bassett was Nixon’s measurement (nearly)

Nixon's jacket was 'too short in the arms,' his daughter wrote

Nixon’s jacket was ‘too brief within the arms,’ his daughter wrote

The Queen wrote Pat Nixon, in a Nov. twenty eighth, 1958 letter on Palace stationary now held on the Nixon Library in Yorba Linda obtained by

‘Thanks for a pleasant ceremonial dinner final night – it was an awesome pleasure to have the ability to be a part of you and Mr. Nixon on Thanksgiving Day,’ she wrote – utilizing a casual title for the president within the hand-written letter.

‘I hope you have got loved your all to transient keep right here in London and I hope you’ll have an excellent return flight to your nation. With my good needs to you and Mr. Nixon.’

She signed the letter, ‘Yours sincerely, Elizaeth R.’

The Queen was solely conscious of among the sartorial drama Nixon had been by way of.

In line with a memoir of Pat Nixon by the Nixons’ youthful daughter, Julie Nixon Eisenhower, the evening started ‘on a frantic observe for my mother and father.’

‘My father had assumed that the dinner can be white tie. However in London he discovered that the Queen had particularly requested much less formal apparel. He needed to provide you with a dinner jacket in a rush. He organized to borrow one from Jim Bassett, who was on go away from the Los Angeles Instances, performing as my father’s press support on the journey.’

However that solely midway solved the issue. ‘Bassett in flip commandeered a swimsuit from a Scotland Yard detective,’ she writes.

That later led to a cartoon in Punch journal poking enjoyable at a ‘trouser-less London bobby on guard outdoors the embassy.’

The swimsuit was ‘too brief within the arms and seemed as if it had come from an area rental company,’ she wrote.

Nixon ‘defined his predicament to the Queen, she laughed heartily,’ Tricia Nixon recalled.

Their relationship continued throughout Nixon’s lengthy presence on the political scene.

Nixon met the Queen and Prince Philip at Buckingham Palace in 1969.

They visited once more in 1970 and stayed at Checkers.

If Nixon was on his finest conduct when he was with the Queen, he had some assist from protocol officers.

In line with a memorandum for the Nixons for a luncheon with the Queen and Prince Philip on the Capitol for the Queen’s 1957 journey: ‘You’ll escort the royal couple up the steps, pause on the second touchdown, face the Senate Workplace Constructing to allow images to get the shot with the Capitol dome within the background. Queen in your proper; Prince on Mrs. Nixon’s left.’

The instances the Queen met first woman Pat Nixon

October 1957 — The Queen visits Washington, DC together with Prince Philip for her first journey for her first state go to as Queen

November 1958 — VP Nixon and the Queen dedicate American Chapel at St. Paul’s Cathedral. Nixon and Mrs. Nixon then hosted Thanksgiving Dinner for the Queen at US embassy. The Queen thought a handwritten observe

June 1959 — VP Nixon greets the Queen on the opening of the St. Lawrence Seaway

February 1969 — President Nixon was obtained by The Queen, Prince Philip, Prince Charles and Princess Anne at Buckingham Palace on his first go to overseas as President.

October 1970 — The Queen visits Checkers to greet Nixon and the primary woman.

-Supply: Nixon Library

Then it was on to Nixon’s formal Senate workplace and a receiving line. ‘Presently you and the royal couple will probably be provided drinks. The Queen will in all probability take both sherry or fruit juice, however all kinds will probably be attainable,’ in response to the memo.

A State Division memo for the go to offered the right technique to handle Her Majesty (it mentioned British topics usually say “Your Majesty” and “Your Royal Highness” ‘and thereafter “Ma’am.”‘

‘Nonetheless “How do you do” is kind of right,’ it mentioned.

Below ‘Drinks,’ the diplomatic observe mentioned ‘The Queen likes Rhine wine, sherry, and Canada Dry ginger ale. Prince Philip could ask for Scotch Whiskey and Soda Water or Gin and Tonic Water.’ Particular preparations are being made to serve impartial water for them in any respect occasions.’

Nixon’s toast on the occasion, marked ‘as dictated from recollection,’ had the president pointing to the Capitol as an emblem of shared heritage of the English-speaking world.

He went on to recall his journeys to far-flung English-speaking nations over the previous 5 years – some a part of the previous British Empire and a few a part of the Commonwealth.

He introduced up journeys to New Zealand and Australia, the Colonies of Hong Kong and Singapore, Malaya, Pakistan, India, Ceylon, Ghana and Canada.’

All have been certain by ‘three nice establishments – the Parliament, the frequent regulation earlier than the English language,’ he mentioned.

The Queen could not assist however touch upon expansive geography herself. ‘I discover it tough to appreciate that lots of your constituents are as removed from Washington as I’m now from London,’ she mentioned.

(She would later tour the West Coast with Ronald Reagan).

In line with a extra notorious story, Nixon tried to arrange King Charles III along with his daughter Tricia.

Creator Sally Bedell Smith informed BBC America that then-Prince Charles, 21 on the time, recalled the incident years later when he visited President George W. Bush on the White Home.

‘Greater than three a long time later, when Charles and his new spouse, Camilla, visited George W. and Laura Bush on the White Home, he joked that the Bushes had higher not attempt to repair up their twin daughters along with his sons William and Harry the way in which Nixon had labored to set him up with Tricia,’ mentioned Smith.

‘That was fairly amusing, I need to say,’ then-Prince Charles informed CNN. ‘That was the time after they have been attempting to marry me off to Tricia Nixon.’

‘All our households are nice Anglophiles,’ Tricia Nixon informed the BBC throughout an interview at Prince Charles’ investiture in 1969 at Caernarfon Fortress.

She attended as a part of a delegation led by former Vice President Hubert Humphrey. Nixon invited Humphrey, whom he defeated within the 1968 presidential election, to steer the delegation.

The Queen caught a chilly and could not meet her, however wrote a letter apologizing.


Leave a Comment