Professor of History


Summary Description | Biographical Information | Introduction | Series Descriptions | Container List


This collection consists of audiocassettes and transcripts of interviews of former President Gerald R. Ford, Ford White House staff, agency officials, and congressmen. Yanek Mieczkowski conducted the interviews in support of his scholarly works, including his book, Gerald Ford and the Challenges of the 1970s. The interviews focus heavily on Gerald Ford’s response to the economic and energy crises of the 1970s, relations with Congress, 1975 State of the Union Address, and the 1976 Presidential campaign.

5 linear inches (ca. 800 pages) and 47 audiocassettes

Yanek Mieczkowski (accession numbers 03-NLF-024, 04-NLF-041, 06-NLF-009, 09-NLF-011)

Transcripts are open. Audiocassettes are closed pending processing. Some items may be temporarily restricted under terms of the donor's deed of gift, a copy of which is available on request, or under National Archives and Records Administration general restrictions (36 CFR 1256).

Yanek Mieczkowski has retained all copyrights he may have in the materials until his death, at which time all his rights in the unpublished materials shall pass to the United States of America. The copyrights to materials written by other individuals or organizations are presumed to remain with them.

Prepared by J.P. Schmidt, June 2012


Yanek Mieczkowski

Dr. Mieczkowski is (as of June 2012) Associate Professor of History at Dowling College in Oakdale, NY. He received his undergraduate degree from Ithaca College, and M.A. and Ph.D. degrees from Columbia University. His publications include: Gerald Ford and the Challenges of the 1970s, 2005; The Routledge Historical Atlas of Presidential Elections, 2001; and Instructor's Manual for America in Modern Times, by Alan Brinkley & Ellen Fitzpatrick, 1997.


The audiocassettes and transcripts included in this collection result from interviews by Yanek Mieczkowski with 39 government officials, including congressmen, Ford White House staff, agency officials, and four interviews with former President Ford. Dr. Mieczkowski used the interviews as sources of information for his dissertation, book (Gerald Ford and the Challenges of the 1970s), and an article on the 1976 Presidential campaign. The article appeared in the February 2008 issue of American History, a copy of which is included in this collection. All transcripts were prepared by Dr. Mieczkowski unless otherwise noted.

For many of the interviews, the major area of discussion is the Ford administration’s response to inflation. Inflation was a grave problem that faced Gerald Ford as he entered the White House in 1974. To find ways to combat inflation, the White House held a conference on this subject in September 1974. The conference brought together leading economic thinkers. One of the means by which the Ford administration sought to reduce inflation, although it was not a product of the conference, was by appealing to the American public through the WIN (Whip Inflation Now) program. WIN encouraged the public to spend less and use less energy. The interviewees provide insight into the role and effectiveness of the conference and the WIN program.

Other economic topics of discussion include President Ford’s October 1975, dollar-for-dollar tax and spending cuts proposal (included in a distorted form in the Revenue Adjustment Act), and his request for a tax cut that became included in the Tax Reduction Act of 1975.

On energy matters, Dr. Mieczkowski inquires about Ford’s energy policies, and contrasts it with Nixon’s policies. The discussion centers around Ford’s plan for the reduction of oil imports, increased import fees and taxes (with revenues being returned to tax payers through tax cuts), phased decontrol of oil prices, and the elimination of the two-tiered price contol system. Although Ford initially implemented import fees, his plan made no headway in Congress. In December 1975, Ford signed compromise legislation, the Energy Policy and Conservation Act, which allowed for a limited phased decontrol of oil prices. The interviews depict the struggle over whether to veto this bill.

One of the ideas proposed by the Ford administration, and championed by Vice President Rockefeller, was to create an Energy Independence Authority in order to spur the development of new sources of energy. Although Rockefeller campaigned strongly, the White House staff and Congress were not supportive of the proposal, as the interviews indicate.

The interviews also focus heavily on Gerald Ford’s relations with Congress, 1975 State of the Union Address, and the 1976 Presidential campaign, especially as they relate to economic and energy issues. Other areas of discussion include: Ford’s public image, the speechwriting process, accessibility to Ford by White House staff and Members of Congress, the Office of Management and Budget, and the President’s veto record. A number of individuals feature prominently in the dialogues, including: Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Richard Nixon, Bob Dole, Nelson Rockefeller, Donald Rumsfeld, Alan Greenspan, Arthur Burns, William Simon, Frank Zarb, and Robert Hartmann.

Related Materials (June 2012)
Additional interviews of President Ford and his associates are included in several collections, including: James M. Cannon: Research interviews and notes for Time and Chance, 1989-94; Composite Oral History Accessions, 1978-present; Gerald R. Ford Library Oral History Projects: Transcripts and audiotapes, 1996-present; James F.C. Hyde, Jr., and Stephen Wayne: Research interviews, 1975-77; A. James Reichley: Research interviews, (1967) 1977-81; and Mark J. Rozell: Research interviews, 1989-90.

There are numerous Ford Library collections related to the economy and energy. Please refer to the core collection guides for “Economic Policy” and “Energy Policy” for more information.


Research Interview Transcripts, 1994-2007.  (Box 1, 5 linear inches)

Arranged alphabetically by name of interviewee, thereunder chronologically.

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Research Interview Audiocassettes, 1994-2007. (Box AV1, 47 audiocassettes)

Arranged alphabetically by name of interviewee, thereunder chronologically.

View container list for this series


Box 1 - Research Interview Transcripts

Folders with the titles struck through are not yet open to research.

Box AV1 - Research Interview Audiocassettes

Folders with the titles struck through are not yet open to research.