When Elvis Met Nixon: The Documents (Part 2) - The Chapin Memo
This memo was written by White House aide, Dwight Chapin, to H. R. Hadelman (White House Chief of Staff to President Richard Nixon), on December 21, 1970. In the memo, Chapin describes the purpose of Elvis' visit, 'to become a "Federal agent at large" to work against the drug problem by communicating with people of all ages.'
He then offers his suggestions as to how the meeting should take place and is clearly in favor of Elvis meeting with the President rather than fobbing him off with the Vice President.
The memo ends with Chapin's comment: 'In addition, if the President wants to meet with some bright young people outside of the Governent, Presley might be a perfect one to start with.' In handwriting by this comment, author unknown, are the words "You must be kidding." So I guess someone at the White House, perhaps Hadelman, wasn't quite so convinced of the benefits of having President Nixon meet with Elvis!
Note: Both Dwight Chapin and H. R. Hadelman were heavily involved in the subsequent Watergate scandal. Chapin was convicted and served nine months in prison as a result. Later in his career, Chapin worked for both Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush. Hadelman resigned as a result of the scandal and was later convicted and served 18 months in prison. On release, Hadelmen worked as a private businessman and died of cancer in 1993.
Transcription of the Chapin Memo
Citation: Memorandum for H.R. Haldeman from Dwight L. Chapin, 21 December 1970
For More Information Please See:
Part of the White House Central: Subject Files
The Subject Files Finding Aid, Health boxes (EX HE 5-1)