Following the Dick Nixon Paper Trail
Yesterday, the best investigative reporter in Orange County, R. Scott Moxley, shared something he saw on L.A. Observed that suggested Richard Nixon may have fibbed about his birthplace being the little white framed house that's now a Yorba Linda tourist attraction. That's because Dick's mom told the Los Angeles Times in 1959 that the then-vice president was born in a hospital.
That got me thinking about something unusual about Nixon's birth I saw in Diggin' Up Gold on the Old Paper Trail; A Workbook for Investigatin' Folks, which was written by the best investigative reporter in the 818, Don Ray. So I emailed Ray to see if he could refresh my memory about what was "squirrely" about the Stubbled One's entrance into this world.
"The birth certificate is different, but not squirrely," Ray replied.
"It's a delayed birth certificate that the county clerk created in 1942 when Nixon was entering active duty in the Naval Reserves. His father swore under oath that his son, Richard, was born in the family's home in their orange grove on Yorba Linda Blvd. in the Township of Fullerton, and that his other son, Donald, was born the next year at a residence (the home of the Milhous family -- Nixon's maternal grandmother and grandfather's place) on Whittier Blvd. in Whittier, CA."
Ray says he's never heard of anyone questioning the court documents, which are published in Diggin' Up Gold on the Old Paper Trail. "Of course, they had to place public notice ads in the Los Angeles Daily Journal for a couple of weeks in which the public had the opportunity to contradict what Pop Nixon said," reports Ray.
He surmises that because Mama Nixon was up in years by 1959, her memory may be what was squirrely. Witness how squirrely mine was as I tried to recall what I'd read in Ray's book within the past year--and I'm only 29, in dog years anyway.
Incidentally, Ray wrote back from Hawaii, where he is hot on the trail of another controversial birth certificate with presidential implications: "I'm in Honolulu on a long-term assignment and today I was within 200 feet of Barack Obama's birth certificate -- the one that nobody has seen, 'cept the government officials who won't release it."