Glimpses into Reagan presidency at National Archives
January 7th, 2011
05:13 PM ET
12 years ago

Glimpses into Reagan presidency at National Archives

Washington (CNN) - When Ronald Reagan left office, a group of Washington-area students were still years from being born. But they stood listening to a tour guide Friday at the National Archives, among the first to see a new exhibit on the former president that opened just hours earlier.

Rarely shown in public, the exhibition includes documents and mementos from Reagan's presidency as part of the centennial celebration of the 40th president's birth.

The display, a joint effort of the National Archives and the Reagan Centennial Commission, is now part of the "Public Vaults" display, with new items rotating in every three months.

The exhibit includes three pages of President Reagan's "Evil Empire" speech, complete with his edits. Words and lines are crossed out and new lines hand-written by the former President are across the top.

It also includes note cards Reagan used as talking points for a crucial 1985 meeting with Soviet Foreign Minister Edward Shevardnadze, fragments of the first U.S. missile destroyed after the signing of the INF treaty, letters between former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, and a bronze model of the Kremlin Gorbachev gave to him as a gift.

The exhibit will continue through the year. Next month, events are planned at the Reagan Library in California on February 6th, the day the former President was born 100 years ago in Illinois.

Filed under: Ronald Reagan
soundoff (9 Responses)
  1. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    President Reagan, you will not believe what the right wingnuts have done to your party.

    January 7, 2011 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  2. w l jones

    symbolism is alive and well still in some coners of our country sad,., but true.

    January 7, 2011 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  3. Indiana Voter

    President Reagan, you will not believe some of the lies and hatred spewed at your party today. Democrats have become even more miserable than they were in the 80's.

    January 7, 2011 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  4. GonzoinHouston

    I liked him a lot more when he was just a president or former president. Now that he's been canonized, he's nothing like the man I remember voting for.

    January 7, 2011 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  5. Patrick from Minnesota

    Jimmy Carter's biggest mistake as President was allowing himself to lose to the Moses of trickle-down economics. Not even two years after their most spectacular failure in history they're still convinced they worked! What the Hell?!?!

    January 7, 2011 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  6. lynn

    "B" movie actor and worse as a President. His acting was an embarresment to the Screen Actors Guild and being a Union President, how does that sit with the anti-union Republicans. I'm still waiting for my trickle down.

    January 7, 2011 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  7. tim hart

    Mr.President, the guy above is correct– your old party has been hijacked by a group of right wing dolts with in essence no skill or imagination. They parrot your words back like a mantra but have no idea about what you truly stood for-- sad sir.

    January 7, 2011 08:36 pm at 8:36 pm |
  8. Ancient Texan

    President Reaan, you will not believe how close the progressive liberals have come to destroying America.

    January 7, 2011 09:18 pm at 9:18 pm |
  9. Squigman

    Amazing. The man never was responsible for much he's been credited with, and still he's looked upon as a god to the republicans.

    January 7, 2011 09:40 pm at 9:40 pm |