April 18, 2001
National Archives to Make Nixon Tapes Available for Sale and Self-Service Copying
College Park, MD. . . Representatives of President Richard Nixon's estate have agreed to allow the National Archives and Records Administration to make available for sale or copying all tape recordings of conversations from the Nixon Presidency that have been previously opened. (This new agreement does not have any bearing on tapes that have not yet been released.)
Beginning Friday, April 20, the Motion Picture, Sound and Video Research Room at the National Archives at College Park will allow self-service copying of the 1,284 hours of taped conversations that have been publicly released. (Researchers must bring their own copying equipment.) These tapes consist of 265 hours of excerpted conversations pertaining to Watergate and Abuse of Governmental Power, 154 hours of Cabinet Room conversations, and 865 hours from the chronological tapes, January-December 1971. (According the Nixon Tapes Settlement Agreement signed on April 12, 1996, beginning in January 2000, the Abuse of Governmental Power tapes were available for sale, but could not be copied in the National Archives research room, and all remaining tapes would not be available for sale or copying until 2003.) These tapes will also be available for sale through the National Archives vendor. For information regarding the purchase of a tape, please contact the Nixon Presidential Materials Staff at 301-837-3290.
In receiving notice of the change in the agreement from John Taylor, executor of President Nixon's estate, Archivist of the United States John Carlin said, "I am extremely pleased that President Nixon's representatives have gone beyond our initial agreement of 1996. This new understanding goes a long way in helping the National Archives further its mission of making historically important records accessible to all Americans. Scholars, students, and the general public will now be able to hear the voice of the President and his advisors making crucial foreign policy and domestic decisions, without having to travel to the National Archives facility in College Park. "
For additional PRESS information, please contact the National Archives Public Affairs staff at (301) 837-1700 or by e-mail.