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Ford and Kennerly

When Gerald R. Ford became President in August, 1974, one of his first decisions was to appoint a young Pulitzer Prize–winning photographer named David Hume Kennerly as his Personal Photographer.  The President gave Kennerly, who had covered Vice President Ford for TIME Magazine, unlimited access to all floors of the White House, even allowing him to attend Cabinet and National Security Council meetings. 

In March, 2006 David Kennerly visited the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library.  There, he spent nearly a month poring over more than 280,000 White House Photo Office images, selecting only the best for his book Extraordinary Circumstances: The Presidency of Gerald R. Ford.  He also used 1500 of the images to stimulate the recollections of his subjects while conducting oral histories with President Ford and members of the Ford administration.  Finally, he chose nearly 200 of these photographs, which, combined with many recollections appear in the book.

The photographs in this exhibit validate Gerald Ford’s faith in Kennerly’s photographic work. They also illustrate the photographer’s ability to capture some of the most important public and private moments in the administration of Gerald R. Ford.