37th President. Autograph letter signed (ALS) “Richard Nixon” one page, 7.25×10.5, personal stationery, February 28, 1978, to longtime White House reporter and news service founder Sarah McClendon, saying his work on his Memoirs will prevent him from accepting an invitation to the White House Correspondent’s Dinner, in full:
I appreciated your invitation for me to be your guest at the White House Correspondent’s Dinner.
Due to my heavy commitment to complete my book which is scheduled for publication in May I will be unable to get away at this time.
Please extend my best wishes to our mutual friends who will be in attendance.
I trust you are still enjoying your Washington assignment. I still recall those occasions when your probing questions livened up some of my press conferences. Keep up the good work!
Fine condition, original mailing folds. Accompanied by original envelope with typed address and a printed free frank.
Nixon’s famous Memoirs were indeed published that year. One year after sending this letter, Nixon would return to the White House for the first time since his resignation in 1974.
McClendon was the longest-serving White House reporter when she died in 2003. She started at the White House under Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1944 and ended her tenure there during the George H.W. Bush administration.