Ronald Reagan - 40th President

  • Birth of Ronald Wilson Reagan

    Birth of Ronald Wilson Reagan
    Ronald Wilson Reagan was born to John Edward "Jack" Reagan, and Nellie Wilson Reagan in a second floor apartment in Tampico, Ill.
  • Reagan Family

    Reagan Family
    Ronald Reagan with his older brother Neil, and their parents. Reagans father Jack nicknamed him "Dutch", because he resembled a fat little dutchman.
  • 12 Year old Ronald Reagan

    12 Year old Ronald Reagan
    During Reagen's early childhood, his family lived in a series of towns, finally settling in Dixon, Illinois, in 1920, where Jack Reagan opened a shoe store.
  • Ronald Reagan as a lifeguard

    Ronald Reagan as a lifeguard
    In 1928, Ronald Reagan graduated from Dixon High School, where he was an athlete and student body president and performed in school plays. During summer vacations, he worked as a lifeguard in Dixon.
  • Reagan in College

    Reagan in College
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    Reagan enrolled in Eureka College

    Enrolling at Eureka College in Illinois on an athletic scholarship, Reagan majored in economics and sociology. There, he played football, ran track, captained the swim team, served as student council president and acted in school productions. After graduating in 1932, he found work as a radio sports announcer in Iowa.
  • Reagan as a broadcaster

    Reagan as a broadcaster
    After Reagan graduated from college in 1932, he moved to Des Moines, Iowa, where he became a radio announcer and sports broadcaster at Station WHO.
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    7 years

    In 1937, Reagan signed a seven-year contract with the Warner Brothers movie studio. Over the next three decades, he appeared in more than 50 films. Among his best-known roles was that of Notre Dame football star George Gipp in the 1940 biopic Knute Rockne, All American. Another notable role was in the 1942 film Kings Row, in which Reagan portrays an accident victim who wakes up to discover his legs have been amputated and cries out, "Where's the rest of me?"
  • Acting career began

    Acting career began
    In 1937 he went to California to report on the Chicago Cubs spring training season. While he was there, he took a screen test for Warner Brothers. The studio offered him a contract, and Reagan's acting career officially began.
  • Love is on the air - acting debut

    Love is on the air - acting debut
    Ronald Reagan made his film debut in Love is on the Air (1937). In that movie he played a radio announcer.
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    Acting career

    His acting career continued from 1937 to 1964. He appeared in more than fifty feature films, most of them with Warner Brothers studio.
  • Married actress Jane Wyman

    Married actress Jane Wyman
    In 1940, Reagan married actress Jane Wyman, with whom he had daughter Maureen and adopted a son, Michael. The couple divorced in 1948.
  • Screen Actors Guild

    Screen Actors Guild
    He became an officer of the Screen Actors Guild. He was a good negotiator and was able to get the union the things that it wanted.
  • Military career

    Military career
    Reagan was on active duty for the first time on April 18, 1942. Reagan had nearsightedness, so he was classified for limited service only so he could not go over seas. His first assignment was at the San Francisco Port of Embarkation at Fort Manson, California.
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    President of screen actors guild

    From 1947 to 1952, Reagan served as president of the Screen Actors Guild. During this time, he met actress Nancy Davis, who had sought his help after she was mistakenly listed as a possible communist sympathizer on the "Hollywood blacklist."
  • President of SAG

    President of SAG
    In 1947 he was elected president of the Screen Actors Guild.
  • Ron and Nancy wed

    Ron and Nancy wed
    Both were immediately attracted to each other, but Reagan was skeptical of marrying again due to his painful divorce from Jane Wyman. Over time, he recognized Nancy as his kindred spirit, and they were married in 1952. The pair had two children, Patricia and Ronald. The wedding, which took place on March 4, 1952, was a very small affair.
  • Campaigned as Democrat for Eisenhower

  • Daughter Patricia Davis Born

  • Shifting of political views

    Shifting of political views
    As his film career began to plateau, he landed a job as host of the television drama series The General Electric Theater, in 1954. Part of his responsibility as host was to tour the United States as a public relations representative for General Electric. It was during this time that his political views shifted from liberal to conservative; he led pro-business discussions, speaking out against excessive government regulation and wasteful spending,central themes of his future political career.
  • Campaigned as Democrat for Eisenhower

  • Ronald Prescott Reagan was born

  • Elected President of the screen actors guild for the last time

    Elected President of the screen actors guild for the last time
  • Hollywood walk of fame

    Hollywood walk of fame
    ◾Category: Television
    ◾Star rank: 316
    ◾Address:
    6396 Hollywood Blvd
    ◾Position: 3 tiles from the curb, facing west
    ◾GPS location:
    34.101489, -118.329109
  • Changed political parties

    Ronald Reagan officially became a Republican in 1962 by changing his registration. The reason that Reagan gave was that his views and the party's views were no longer aligned. He found that the Democratic Party was concentrating more on individual rights rather than a collective philosophy. He always maintained that he did not leave the Democratic Party, the party left him.
  • Made a grand jury appearance in the MCA-SAG anti-trust hearing.

    Made a grand jury appearance in the MCA-SAG anti-trust hearing.
    On February 5, 1962--the day before his 51st birthday--he appeared as a witness before a federal grand jury in Los Angeles. The grand jury was investigating possible criminal misconduct as a part of an antitrust probe and never charged Reagan with any crimes--even though prosecutors seriously considered doing so. But the testimony gives a fascinating look at Ronald Reagan under an investigator's sharp questioning
  • Reagan defeated Edmund G. “Pat” Brown in a landslide.

    Reagan defeated Edmund G. “Pat” Brown in a landslide.
    When Ronald Reagan first ran for elective office, Governor of California in 1966, the opposition attempted to tar him as an extremist. Reagan was running against incumbent Governor Pat Brown, father of California current Governor Jerry Brown. Notwithstanding the extremist charges, Reagan won the election, and served two terms as California Governor.
  • Announced his candidacy for President

    Announced his candidacy for President
    Reagan waited until the Republican Convention in Miami Beach to announce his candidacy for President. Unsuccessful, he joined in the unanimous support for Richard Nixon for President.
  • Won re-election for Governor over Jesse Unruh, The Speaker of the State Assembly.

    Won re-election for Governor over Jesse Unruh, The Speaker of the State Assembly.
  • Signed the California Welfare Reform Act, whose purpose was to reduce welfare rolls.

    Reagan opposed Nixon’s proposal for reforming welfare. Reagan resisted efforts to pressure California into increasing cost-of-living payments to welfare recipients. In 1971, Reagan worked out a compromise. He brought California into compliance with federal regulations, and Nixon promised not to stand in the way of a pilot program requiring able-bodied welfare recipients to work as a condition of receiving aid. The program had mixed success but established Reagan as the champion of “workfare"
  • Announced his candidacy for President for the 1976 election.

    On this day in 1975, Ronald Reagan announced his candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination, challenging Gerald Ford, who had moved into the White House in August 1974 after Richard Nixon resigned. He would lose the race for the nomination but his strong showing laid the groundwork for the 1980 election.
  • Ronald Reagan Addresses Kansas City Convention Delegates

    Ronald Reagan Addresses Kansas City Convention Delegates
    August 19: Reagan addresses Kansas City convention delegates. His speech, about the tension between the dangers of nuclear weapons and the need to preserve freedom, electrifies the audience. For the next four years, Reagan divides his time betwen working in his ranch, giving speeches and writing a weekly column.
  • Announced his candidacy for the Republican nomination for President.

    Announced his candidacy for the Republican nomination for President.
    Announced his candidacy for the Republican nomination for President. He was the tenth and last Republican to enter the race.
  • In a landslide victory, Reagan was elected the 40th President of the United States.

    In a landslide victory, Reagan was elected the 40th President of the United States.
    Election Night Victory Speech, Let me just say first of all, this has been, well, there's never been a more humbling moment in my life, not only humbled by the extent of what has happened tonight. Even if it had been the cliffhanger that all of us, I think, were expecting, it would have been the same way. But just to have had the support of the people of this country. I consider the trust you have placed in me sacred and I give you my sacred oath that I will do my utmost to justify your faith.
  • Inauguration

    Inauguration
    In his inaugural speech on January 20, 1981, Reagan rhetorically announced that "government is not the solution to our problems; government is the problem." He called for an era of national renewal and hoped that America would again be "a beacon of hope for those who do not have freedom."
  • Assassination Attempt

    Assassination Attempt
    On March 30, 1981, 25-year-old John Hinckley Jr. opened fire on U.S. President Ronald Reagan just outside the Washington Hilton Hotel. President Reagan was hit by one bullet, which punctured his lung. Three others were also injured in the shooting.
  • First woman Supreme Court

    First woman Supreme Court
    In 1981, Reagan made history by appointing Sandra Day O'Connor as the first woman to the U.S. Supreme Court.
  • Strategic defense initiatve

    The Strategic Defense Initiative, a.k.a. SDI, was President Ronald Reagan's 1983 proposed Star Wars program that "called for a land- or space-based shield against a nuclear attack. Although SDI was criticized as unfeasible and in violation of the Antiballistic Missile Treaty (ABM Treaty), Congress approved billions of dollars for development."
  • Re Electon

    Re Electon
    Landslide win 525 of 538 electorial votes - the largest number ever won by an American presidential candidate.
  • REAGAN SEEKS SOVIET AGREEMENT ON THE DEPLOYMENT OF 'STAR WARS'

  • Berli Wall Speech

    Berli Wall Speech
    Reagan spoke at Germany's Berlin Wall, a symbol of communism, and famously challenged Gorbachev to tear it down. Twenty-nine months later, Gorbachev allowed the people of Berlin to dismantle the wall, ending Soviet domination of East Germany. After leaving the White House, Reagan returned to Germany in September 1990—just weeks before Germany was officially reunified—and, with a hammer, took several symbolic swings at a remaining chunk of the wall.
  • Reagan and Gorbachev Sign Missile Treaty and Vow to Work for Greater Reductions

    Reagan and Gorbachev Sign Missile Treaty and Vow to Work for Greater Reductions
    With fervent calls for a new era of peaceful understanding, President Reagan and Mikhail S. Gorbachev today signed the first treaty reducing the size of their nations' nuclear arsenals.
  • Reagan left the White House

    Reagan left the White House
    Reagans second term ended. Bush was President. After leaving the White House, Reagan and wife Nancy returned to their home in Los Angeles, California.
  • Ronald Reagan Presidental Library opens

    Ronald Reagan Presidental Library opens
    In 1991, the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum opened in Simi Valley, California.
  • In this letter to the American People, Reagan announces his Alzheimer's diagnosis.

    In this letter to the American People, Reagan announces his Alzheimer's diagnosis.
    My Fellow Americans, In opening our hearts, we hope this might promote greater awareness of this condition. Perhaps it will encourage a clearer understanding of the individuals and families who are affected by it.

    I have recently been told that I am one of the Americans who will be afflicted with Alzheimer's Disease.
  • President Reagan Dies

    President Reagan Dies
    June 5, 2004, President Reagan died at his Los Angeles home at age 93, making him the nation's longest-lived president at that time. (In 2006, Gerald Ford surpassed him for this title.) A state funeral was held in Washington, D.C., and Reagan was later buried on the grounds of his presidential library in California.