W. Richard Howard Papers, White House Special Files, 1970-1974
Title: W. Richard Howard Papers, White House Special Files, 1970-1974
Collection Number: 6829751
Howard, W. Richard
Extent: 2 linear feet, 7 linear inches; 6 boxes
Online items available
Richard Nixon Presidential Library and Museum
Abstract: Richard Howard was Staff Assistant to Charles W. Colson. He worked in public relations with a concentration on professional
and trade organizations and the "New American Majority." The files reflect Howard's public relations efforts and public opinion
Language of Material: English
Collection is open for research. Some materials may be unavailable based upon categories of materials exempt from public release
established in the Presidential Recordings and Materials Preservation Act of 1974.
Most government records are in the public domain; however, this series includes commercial materials, such as newspaper clippings,
that may be subject to copyright restrictions. Researchers should contact the copyright holder for information.
W. Richard Howard Papers, White House Special Files, 1970-1974. Richard Nixon Presidential Library and Museum
These materials are in the custody of the National Archives and Records Administration under the provisions of Title I of
the Presidential Recordings and Materials Preservation Act of 1974 (P.L. 93-526, 88 Stat. 1695) and implementing regulations.
Scope and Content of Collection
The materials of W. Richard Howard date from 1970 to 1974, during which time Howard served as Staff Assistant to Charles W.
Colson. According to an undated Colson staff list, Howard's area of responsibility was "Administration." He communicated regularly
with media and public opinion representatives to ensure that a favorable political and personal image of the President was
presented to the public. In a 1973 memorandum to Alexander Haig, Howard defined his special areas of concern as professional
and trade organizations, public opinion, and the New American Majority.
This series contains the records of W. Richard Howard. The series is comprised of the Action Memos subseries, the Meetings
Files subseries, and the Subject Files subseries. The Action Memos subseries contains Presidential and White House staff memoranda
prepared primarily by Charles Colson, Howard, and two staff secretaries, Jon Huntsman and Bruce Kehrli. There also are memoranda
to and from Dwight Chapin, H. R. Haldeman, Larry Higby, and President Richard M. Nixon. These memoranda deal with the administration's
effort to maintain a favorable media image. The Meetings Files subseries contains memoranda, schedules, and copies of photographs
concerning brief Presidential public relations meetings. The materials indicate the purpose of the meetings, the participants,
plans for press releases, and possible talking points. The Subject Files subseries contains memoranda concerning special interest
groups, the 1972 Presidential campaign, and public opinion polls.
The Action Memos series contains original and electrostatic copies of Presidential and White House staff memoranda prepared
during the period 1971-73. They are mainly between Colson, Howard, and two Staff Secretaries, Jon Huntsman (1971) and Bruce
Kehrli (1972-73). There are also memoranda to and from Dwight Chapin, H. R. Haldeman, Larry Higby, and the President. These
memoranda have the usual attachments and notations of the Staff Secretary's office, a cover sheet bearing a log number, which
sometimes include a "P" prefix or an "H" suffix. The Action Memos series clearly reveals Howard's efforts to create a favorable
media image for the administration.
The Meetings File indicates another area of Howard's responsibility, that is, to arrange public relations meetings for the
President. The files reveal that the meetings were usually brief, lasting from five to twenty minutes, and often included
photographic sessions and award presentation ceremonies. The series contains information on the purpose of the meetings, participants,
plans for press releases, and possible talking points.
The Subject Files deal with such topics as special interest groups, the Teamsters Union, the war in Vietnam, the 1972 campaign,
and the Watergate scandal. Most of the materials in this series pertain to public opinion polls, which Howard presumably used
in preparing public relations strategy. The series also includes analyses of the Republican National Committee's budget, of
election results, and of statements made by Democratic leaders.
All photographs have been transferred to the audiovisual collection (PA 78-2-2-21). Each photograph has been replaced with
a withdrawal sheet and an accompanying electrostatic copy.
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