We're sorry. Due to the coronavirus public health emergency, the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library & Museum will be closed to the public beginning March 14th until further notice. We will continue to respond to written requests for records at ford.library@nara.gov and ford.museum@nara.gov. Please check our website or archives.gov/coronavirus for updates on our operating hours and status.

Gerald R. Ford Library

The Gerald R. Ford Library collects, preserves, and makes accessible to the public a rich body of archival materials on U.S. domestic issues, foreign relations, and political affairs during the Cold War era, focusing on the Ford administration. It also offers a wide variety of special events, speakers, book signings, forums, educational workshops, films, and other programs. And, in addition to the permanent timeline exhibit on the lives of Gerald and Betty Ford, the Library mounts several small temporary exhibits each year.

The Library is part of the Presidential libraries system of the National Archives and Records Administration, a Federal agency. Unlike other Presidential libraries, the Ford library’s library and museum components are geographically separate. The Library is located in Ann Arbor, Michigan, on the North Campus of the University of Michigan, while the Museum is in Grand Rapids, Michigan, 130 miles west of Ann Arbor.

Library Basic Facts:

Groundbreaking: January 15, 1979
Opened to the public: April 27, 1981
Cost of construction: $4.3 million
Square footage: 50,000 square feet
Staffing: 17 employees and contractors, plus volunteers, interns, and work study students

Hours of Operation

Monday - Friday. 8:45 am - 4:45 pm
Closed all Federal holidays.

Admission

Admission and Parking is Free

Ann Arbor, MI

1000 Beal Avenue
Ann Arbor, MI  48109

734.205.0555

Collections

The 1974-77 Presidential papers of Gerald Ford and his White House staff form the core Ford Library collection. These are supplemented by the pre- and post-presidential papers of Gerald Ford, the papers of Betty Ford, collections of Federal records, and more. Former government officials have donated personal papers, researchers in the period have given copies of research interviews, and private individuals associated with the issues and events of the time have given their materials.

View Library Collections


Many important materials from our textual and audiovisual collections have been digitized and are now available online.

View Digital Collections

The Library is open to the public without appointment. Advanced consultation with an archivist is recommended to ensure that there are materials relevant to your topic and that those materials are open to research.


Exhibits

Permanent Exhibit

President and Mrs. Ford

President Ford's life is told through a permanent exhibit of over 100 seldom-seen documents and photos, plus a biographical film.

Temporary Exhibit

Ford and Kennerly Extraordinary Circumstances

Opens December 17, 2019

Included in this exhibition are photographs taken by Pulitzer Prize winning photographer, David Hume Kennerly. Kennerly was President Ford’s personal photographer; many of the images included will show the remarkable access Ford granted Kennery. This exhibit is a reprise of the display that was on display in Grand Rapids at the Ford Presidential Museum.

Upcoming Programs and Events - Ann Arbor

All programs are held at the Library unless stated otherwise


Date Event
  Exhibit in Ann Arbor

Currently Closed

Extraordinary Circumstances: The Presidency of Gerald R. Ford

Included in this exhibition are photographs taken by Pulitzer Prize winning photographer, David Hume Kennerly.  Kennerly was President Ford’s personal photographer, many of the images included will show the remarkable access Ford granted Kennery. This exhibit is a reprise of the display that was on display in Grand Rapids at the Ford Presidential Museum.

  Events in Ann Arbor
Thursday, January 14, 2021
4:00 PM (EST)

Exploring the White House: Inside America's Most Famous Home
Kate Andersen Brower
Virtual Talk - Reservations


As our nation prepares for an inaugural celebration, we invite families to attend this free, 45-minute Zoom webinar session featuring New York Times bestselling author of "Exploring the White House: Inside America's Most Famous Home," Kate Andersen Brower.  Kate will share a special inside look into the most famous home in America and the lives of hardworking staff members and first ladies who've maintained it. The book is intended for 8-12 year-olds; we invite families to ask their questions about the history of the home, White House traditions, first families, and more!

Interested in purchasing a copy? Click here.
Reserve your space here, or watch on Facebook!

Thursday, February 4, 2021
7:00 PM (EST)

Slavery in the President's Neighborhood: The Complicated Past and the Paradoxical Relationship Between Slavery and Freedom in the Nation's Capital
Lina Mann and Matthew Costello

Virtual Talk - Reservations

Launched by the White House Historical Association in February 2020, the Slavery in the President's Neighborhood research initiative seeks to identify enslaved and free African Americans who built, lived, and worked at the White House. Association Senior Historian Dr. Matthew Costello and Historian Lina Mann will discuss the initiative and its online features, as well as some of their discoveries thus far as they seek to return these individuals to the historical forefront.

Matthew Costello joined the Association in November 2016 after completing his Ph.D. and M.A. in American history at Marquette University. His book, The Property of the Nation: George Washington’s Tomb, Mount Vernon, and the Memory of the First President was published by University Press of Kansas in fall 2019 and was a finalist for the George Washington Book Prize.

Lina Mann first joined the White House Historical Association in 2017 as American University’s Public History fellow and came onboard as a historian in March 2020. She is interested in many different aspects of White House history, including her latest research on the enslaved individuals that built, lived, and worked in the White House.

Reserve your space here, or join us on Facebook!


Education

Students and Classes

The Ford Library welcomes individual students and classes to visit the Library for educational opportunities. For those unable to visit the Library in person, you can still conduct research using online materials.

For further information, contact Stacy Davis: (734) 205-0563


Plan an Event

For more information or to schedule an event, please e-mail Michelle Tomasek or call 734-205-0540.

The Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library, conveniently located on the University of Michigan's North Campus, offers a prestigious venue for a meeting, reception, or dinner.

Venue highlights

library main lobby

Library Main Lobby

The expansive main lobby of the Library is an exceptional setting for dinners, special addresses, and receptions. A variety of permanent and temporary exhibits serve as an impressive backdrop.

Capacity: Sit-down dinner - 120 / Standing reception - 250

library auditorium

Auditorium

The 1,700 square foot stage and audio/visual equipped auditorium has the versatility to accommodate symposiums, educational presentations, cultural events, award ceremonies, and musical performances, among others.

Capacity: 200

library classroom

Classrooms

These areas are ideal for meetings and seminars where participants need a classroom atmosphere and set-up. The classroom can be divided into two rooms, with excellent layout possibilities.

Capacity: Full Room - 40

library courtyard patio

Library Courtyard

For seasonal functions, the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library grounds are available. The patio, well-groomed lawn and garden backdrop offer the perfect venue for more casual company events.

More Information

General availability for all spaces is Monday – Friday between the hours of 8 AM – 9 PM. Contact the Library for information about scheduling an event, rental fee structure, or to review regulations on use of the facility and the application process. Events must be consistent with the public perception of the Museum as an educational, research, or cultural institution (no weddings, proms, or similar events).

Call: 734-205-0555 / E-mail: ford.library@nara.gov

View/Download Rental Document:

College Work Study / Interns / Volunteers

The Library accepts a limited number of college work-study students, interns, and volunteers each year to assist with processing, preservation, and digitization of textual and audiovisual holdings. Student workers, eligible for the College Work-Study Program at the University of Michigan, and interns are often graduate students in archival studies, while volunteers range from high school students to retirees.

More Information

For college work-study opportunities, contact Stacy Davis: (734) 205-0563

For intern and volunteer opportunities, contact Geir Gundersen: (734) 205-0556