While he never set foot on campus, Richard Nixon made at least two campaign visits to Ann Arbor before being elected president.
As vice president hoping to succeed President Dwight D. Eisenhower, Nixon and his “Victory Special” train pulled into Ann Arbor on Oct. 27, 1960—two weeks after his opponent, Sen. John F. Kennedy, spoke on campus.
Thousands of people—estimates ranged from 6,000 to 16,000—met Nixon at the Michigan Central Depot train station (now better known as the Gandy Dancer restaurant). Kennedy supporters turned out with signs proclaiming “Let’s Keep the White House Empty Another Four Years” and “Say Something Please.” Still, GOP placards dominated the reception.
Nixon was a U.S. senator when he visited Ann Arbor on Oct. 15, 1952. He was campaigning on the Republican presidential ticket with Dwight D. Eisenhower.
Sources: New York Times; The Washington Post
Photo: Eck Stanger photograph collection, Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan