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. Current holdings
include 25 million pages of memos, letters, meeting notes, reports, and other
historical documents. Also there are one-half million audiovisual items, including
photographs, videotapes of news broadcasts, audiotapes of speeches and press
briefings, film of public events, and televised campaign commercials.
The 1974-77 presidential papers of Gerald Ford and his White House staff form the core 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.
The Library serves students of all ages, scholars, mass media production staff, government officials, journalists, and others regardless of national citizenship. The Library is located in Ann Arbor, Michigan, on the North Campus of the University of Michigan, Gerald Ford's alma mater (B.A., 1935).
The Library is part of the Presidential libraries system of the National Archives and Records Administration, a Federal agency. Unlike other Presidential libraries, the museum component is geographically separate from the library/archives. The Ford Museum is in Grand Rapids, Michigan, 130 miles west of Ann Arbor, in Gerald Ford's hometown and the congressional district he represented from 1949-73. Despite the separation, the library and museum are a single institution sharing one director.
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 - 13.5 FTE plus Director
- Documents - 25 million pages
- Still photographs - 450,000
- Video - 3,500 hours
- Audio - 3,000 hours
- Motion picture film - 787,000 feet