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J. Fred Buzhardt

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The Presidential historical materials of J. Fred Buzhardt are in custody of the National Archives and Records Administration under the provisions of Title I of the Presidential Recordings and Materials Preservation Act of 1974 (P.L. 93-526, 88 Stat. 1695) and implementing regulations. In accordance with the act and regulations, archivists reviewed the file group to identify personal and private materials (including materials outside the date span covered by the act) as well as non-historical items. These materials have been returned to the individual who has primary proprietary interest.

Materials covered by the act have been archivally processed and are described in this register. Items which are security classified or otherwise restricted under the act and regulations have been removed and placed in a closed file. A Document Withdrawal Record (GSA Form 7279) with a description of each restricted document has been inserted at the beginning of each folder from which materials have been removed. A Document Control Record marks the original position of the withdrawn item.

Employees of the National Archives will review periodically the unclassified portions of closed materials for the purpose of opening those which no longer require restriction. Certain classified documents may be declassified under authority of Executive Order 13526 in response to a Mandatory Review Request (NA Form 14020) submitted by the researcher.

  • Linear feet of materials:   3 linear feet, 1 linear inch
  • Approximate number of pages:   4,000

Biographical Note

Joseph Fred Buzhardt, Jr. was born February 21, 1924, in Greenwood, South Carolina. He attended Wolford College in Spartanburg, South Carolina before being appointed to the United States Military Academy at West Point, where he became a member of the Class of 1946 on July 1, 1943. He completed Air Cadet training and graduated with a B.S. degree from West Point as a 2nd Lieutenant in the United States Army Air Corps. While on graduation leave, Buzhardt married Imogene Sanders on June 14, 1946. He then served at McChord Air Force Base in Washington and in Japan before resigning his commission in 1950.

Buzhardt returned to school after leaving the military and received his LLB law degree at the University of South Carolina, Columbia in 1952. He then practiced in his father's law firm in McCormich, South Carolina until he became a legislative aide to United States Senator Strom Thurmond in 1958. Buzhardt specialized in military affairs and remained on the Senator's staff until returning to private practice in 1966.

In 1969, Buzhardt was appointed Special Assistant to the Assistant Secretary of Defense and was Special Assistant to the Chairman of the Blue Ribbon Defense Panel in 1969-70. He was then appointed General Counsel for the Department of Defense in 1970.

On May 10, 1973, Buzhardt was appointed White House Counsel for matters pertaining to the Watergate investigation. He resigned from the position on August 16, 1974, but briefly remained in Washington, DC in order to assist with Gerald Ford’s transition to President. Afterwards, he returned to private legal practice as counsel to the Dowling, Sanders, Dukes, Novit and Svalina law firm in Beaufort, South Carolina. J. Fred Buzhardt died of a heart attack in Hilton Head, South Carolina on December 16, 1978.

Scope and Content Note

Although the materials cover the period September 1970 to February 1974, three of the boxes consist primarily of carbons of outgoing letters and memos from John W. Dean III and Fred Fielding, Counsel and Deputy Counsel to the President. It appears these materials were in the office files when J. Fred Buzhardt was appointed White House Counsel May 10, 1973. John Dean was fired on April 30, 1973. Fred Fielding, Deputy Counsel to the President, remained on the staff. Approximately one and a half boxes contain memos or letters signed by J. Fred Buzhardt.

The first three boxes of materials consist of a chronological file of incoming letters and memos, some originals, and outgoing carbons. The materials concern a variety of topics such as: consideration of endorsements and advertisements, use of the President's name and the Presidential seal, requests for support for appointments to the White House legal office, the DC bar and the Supreme Court, requests for Presidential pardons and amnesty, legal briefs involving White House staff members and the President, advice on possible conflicts of interest, comments on bills pending before Congress such as the 18 year old vote, appearances of staff and administration figures before Congressional committees concerned with issues such as ITT and the milk producers.

The last 2 boxes contain materials brought to the Special files from Buzhardt's office on August 13, 1974, because they contained Top Secret materials. They consist of one box of proposals and plans for the future Nixon Library at Camp Pendleton, California. Materials were labeled “Box 23 J. Fred Buzhardt and Assigned Special files Number #236.” Contents of box were stored in an accordion file labeled “RN Library at Camp Pendleton, Camp Pendleton, Camp Pendleton-50 Year Lease.” The last box contains clippings on Democratic candidates and major contributors and a large folder of materials concerning the advertisement in the New York Times calling for the impeachment of the President in 1972.

 [See Also:  Buzhardt's White House Central Files]

Series Description

Boxes:   1-4
Series:   Correspondence | Folder Title List
Spans:   1970 - 1974
Description:  Incoming and outgoing correspondence, 1970-1974. Tissue and electrostatic copies of memoranda and letters. Arranged chronologically.

Boxes:   5-7
Series:   Office Files | Folder Title List
Spans:   1971 - 1974
Description:   Originals and copies of memoranda, correspondence, lease agreements, maps, photographs and other documents relating to a proposed Richard Nixon Library at Camp Pendleton in California. Originals and copies of memoranda, correspondence, newspaper articles and reports pertaining to the articles of impeachment and the 1972 Presidential election.

Preservation Note

Holdings maintenance was performed on the collection in October 2011 in order to ensure the longevity of the documents. In some instances, the previous number of folders and/or boxes in a collection may have been increased. This finding aid has been updated to reflect any changes. The previous version of the finding aid is available upon request.

Folder Title List

CORRESPONDENCE, September 1970 - February 1974

Box 1

Memoranda/General [1 of 3]
Memoranda/General [2 of 3]
Memoranda/General [3 of 3]
Chronological-October 1970
Chronological-November 1970
Chronological-December 1970 [1 of 2]
Chronological-December 1970 [2 of 2]
Chronological-January 1971 [1 of 2]
Chronological-January 1971 [2 of 2]
Chronological-February 1971
Chronological-March 1971 [1 of 2]
Chronological-March 1971 [2 of 2]
Chronological-April 1971 [1 of 3]
Chronological-April 1971 [2 of 3]
Chronological-April 1971 [3 of 3]
Chronological-May 1971 [1 of 4]
Chronological-May 1971 [2 of 4]
Chronological-May 1971 [3 of 4]
Chronological-May 1971 [4 of 4]

Box 2

Chronological -June 1971 [1 of 3]
Chronological -June 1971[2 of 3]
Chronological -June 1971 [3 of 3]
Chronological -July 1971 [1 of 2]
Chronological -July 1971 [2 of 2]
Chronological -August 1971l [1 of 3]
Chronological -August 1971 [2 of 3]
Chronological -August 1971 [3 of 3]
Chronological-September 1971
Chronological -October 1971
Chronological - November 1971
Chronological - December 1971
Chronological - January 1972
Chronological - February 1972
Chronological - March 1972
Chronological - April 1972
Chronological - May 1972
Chronological - June 1972 [1 of 2]
Chronological - June 1972 [2 of 2]
Chronological - July 1972
Chronological - July-August 1972
Chronological - August 1972
Chronological - September 1972
Chronological - October 1972

Box 3

Chronological - November 1972
Chronological - December 1972
Chronological - January 1973
Chronological - February 1973
Chronological - March-April 1973
Chronological - May 1973 [1 of 2]
Chronological - May 1973 [2 of 2]
Chronological - June 1973 [1 of 3]
Chronological - June 1973 [2 of 3]
Chronological - June 1973 [3 of 3]
Chronological - July 1973 [1 of 4]
Chronological - July 1973 [2 of 4]
Chronological - July 1973 [3 of 4]
Chronological - July 1973 [4 of 4]
Chronological - August 1973 [1 of 3]
Chronological - August 1973 [2 of 3]
Chronological - August 1973 [3 of 3]
Chronological - September 1973 [1 of 4]

Box 4

Chronological - September 1973 [2 of 4]
Chronological - September 1973 [3 of 4]
Chronological - September 1973 [4 of 4]
Chronological - October 1973 [1 of 3]
Chronological - October 1973 [2 of 3]
Chronological - October 1973 [3 of 3]
Chronological - October Office 1973 [1 of 3]
Chronological - October Office 1973 [2 of 3]
Chronological - October Office 1973 [3 of 3]
Chronological - November 1973 [1 of 3]
Chronological - November 1973 [2 of 3]
Chronological - November 1973 [3 of 3]
Chronological - November Office 1973 [1 of 2]
Chronological - November Office 1973 [2 of 2]
Chronological - December 1973
Chronological December Office 1973 [1 of 2]
Chronological December Office 1973 [2 of 2]

OFFICE FILES, 1971-1974

Box 5

[Box Folder List Title]
Camp Pendleton
Camp Pendleton - RN Foundation [1 of 2]
Camp Pendleton - RN Foundation [2 of 2]
Camp Pendleton - 50 Year Lease
[Loose Materials Concerning Camp Pendleton] [1 of 3]
[Loose Materials Concerning Camp Pendleton] [2 of 3]
[Loose Materials Concerning Camp Pendleton] [3 of 3]
[Nixon Library Timetable with attached Surveys of Camp Pendleton] [1 of 3]
[Nixon Library Timetable with attached Surveys of Camp Pendleton] [2 of 3]
[Nixon Library Timetable with attached Surveys of Camp Pendleton] [3 of 3]
Camp Pendleton [Maps and Surveys] [1 of 5]
Camp Pendleton [Maps and Surveys] [2 of 5]
Camp Pendleton [Maps and Surveys] [3 of 5]
Camp Pendleton [Maps and Surveys] [4 of 5]
Camp Pendleton [Maps and Surveys] [5 of 5]

Box 6

75W Impeachment Ad [1 of 4]
75W Impeachment Ad [2 of 4]
75W Impeachment Ad [3 of 4]
75W Impeachment Ad [4 of 4]
Democratic Candidate Campaign Contributors Clippings]
69W Contributors [1 of 3]
69W Contributors [2 of 3]
69W Contributors [3 of 3]
68W McGovern Violations [1 of 4]
68W McGovern Violations [2 of 4]
68W McGovern Violations [3 of 4]
68W McGovern Violations [4 of 4]
Executive Privilege #2 Congressional-Invocation- Aug. 1971 [1 of 7]
Executive Privilege #2 Congressional-Invocation- Aug. 1971 [2 of 7]
Executive Privilege #2 Congressional-Invocation- Aug. 1971 [3 of 7]

Box 7

Executive Privilege #2 Congressional-Invocation- Aug. 1971 [4 of 7]
Executive Privilege #2 Congressional-Invocation- Aug. 1971 [5 of 7]
Executive Privilege #2 Congressional-Invocation- Aug. 1971 [6 of 7]
Executive Privilege #2 Congressional-Invocation- Aug. 1971 [7 of 7]
Executive Privilege MAP Projections-Sept.-Oct. 1971 [1 of 4]
Executive Privilege MAP Projections-Sept.-Oct. 1971 [2 of 4]
Executive Privilege MAP Projections-Sept.-Oct. 1971 [3 of 4]
Executive Privilege MAP Projections-Sept.-Oct. 1971 [4 of 4]
Executive Privilege Symington Subcommittee Hearings
Miscellaneous [two inner folders:]
Dudley Chapman - Classified Documents
Personnel Changes - White House Office

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