On May 17, 1973, the United States Senate Watergate Committee convened to begin the investigation on the Watergate scandal. The year before, five men were arrested for breaking and entering into the Democratic National Committee’s headquarters, and President Nixon’s campaign office was implicated. From May 17 through August 7, the hearings were broadcast on national television, and an estimated 85% of American households with TVs tuned in.
In the New-York Historical Society Museum collection, political buttons showed many Americans were unsupportive of President Nixon. Numerous buttons have slogans such as “Impeachment with Honor” and “Free The Watergate 500,” in reference to the 500 tapes Nixon had to turn over to the Watergate Committee.
Nixon resigned his presidency due to the Watergate scandal, saying in his resignation speech, “To have served in this office is to have felt a very personal sense of kinship with each and every American.” Do you remember when Nixon resigned? Tell us your story in the comments!