|Title||Elizabeth Ann "Betty" Bloomer (Warren) Ford|
|Collection||First Lady Dolls|
Elizabeth "Betty" Bloomer (Warren) Ford
Wife of Gerald Rudolph Ford - served as First Lady from 1974-1977.
Although she later said that she had wished she had been called by her given name of Elizabeth, she was always addressed by the nickname Betty as a child and it became permanent. She was short in stature; brown hair and blue eyes.
Betty's first marriage to salesman William Warren (1942-1947) ended in divorce. She is the third presidential wife whose first marriage ended in divorce.
Betty Bloomer was 30 years old when she married Gerald Rudolph Ford, Jr., on October 15, 1948. She became both a wife and political spouse practically at the same time, moving to Washington only two months and two weeks after her wedding, so her husband could begin his congressional career.
With the resignation of Richard Nixon from the presidency, Gerald Ford was sworn in as Chief Executive in the East Room of the White House on August 9, 1974, his wife holding the Bible as he repeated the oath. In his Inaugural Address, Ford became the first president to ever make reference to his wife: "I am indebted to no man and only one woman, my dear wife, Betty, as I begin this very difficult job."
Betty Ford became First Lady under very unique circumstances in presidential history. She was the wife of a Vice President who had not been elected but appointed to the position when his incumbent predecessor resigned, who then inherited the presidency upon the resignation of the incumbent President.
She expressed her ideas and television's magic window enabled the public to see an attractive, spirited woman.
Betty Ford made an unprecedented decision to be entirely forthcoming about her health condition; having breast cancer and undergoing a mastectomy. She realized what she called the "power" of the First Lady's role to create change and influence behavior. Her direct usage of the very words "breast" and "cancer" was something that had rarely been done in the past. By further using her own condition to discuss screening, diagnosis, treatment options and the emotional process of surviving a mastectomy, she not only raised public awareness but forever changed the perception of the disease.
In the context of the traditional hostess role, Betty was also innovative. She employed various types of American crafts as centerpieces: Native American reed baskets, antique tablecloths and even candle-holders made from wooden spools used at a historic New England textile mill.
As much for her accomplishments achieved after she left the White House, as for those she accomplished while First Lady, Betty Ford has been recognized by both private insititutions and the federal government.
Reaching her 91st birthday in 2009, Betty Ford became the third longest living First Lady. She was preceeded in death by her husband, Gerald Ford (December 26, 2006). She died on July 8, 2011.
|Event||Bicentennial First Lady Doll Exhibit - Community Project|
|Creator||Park, Phyllis Juhlin|
|Costume||Costume by Jennie Angus Feltch|
|Given||Given by Jennie Angus Feltch|
|Source||Uintah County Library|