Forty years ago today – Aug. 8, 1974 – President Richard M. Nixon announced he would resign the presidency effective at noon on the following day. He was he first, and so far the only, American president to step down in that way.
Gerald R. Ford, who had been appointed vice president months earlier under the terms of the Twenty-fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution, was sworn in as the nation’s 38th president on Aug. 9. 1974. He was the only person to have served as both vice president and president of the U.S. without having being elected to either position.
Below, CBS News announces Nixon’s pending resignation. Below that is a fascinating video showing Nixon and his aides preparing for the president’s address to the nation, followed by the address itself.