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First Ladies, The

First Ladies, The

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Item Number:
420 min.
Closed Caption:
Grade Level:
9 - 12
The First Ladies - Their husbands each rose to the pinnacle of power in the United States, but these five Presidents' wives also served the nation as some of the most influential and controversial First Ladies in history! 1) Dolley Madison: America's First Lady - Long before women held any overt political power, Dolley Madison used her unelected position to legitimize the nation's new capital, to create a political and social style for the new country, and to give Americans a sense of their own national identity. 2) Eleanor Roosevelt - She was the nation's conscience, a tireless advocate for America's disadvantaged, and Eleanor Roosevelt transcended controversy to influence American social policies for decades—helping to create the first international charter on human rights. 4) Lady Bird - She witnessed one of the most turbulent periods in U.S. history—assassinations, civil rights, riots, Vietnam—and as the wife of President Lyndon Johnson, Claudia "Lady Bird" Johnson became one of America's best-known First Ladies. 5) Betty Ford: The Real Deal - She was many things—breast cancer survivor, feminist, substance abuser—but one thing Betty Ford was not was a phony, and in the wake of the Watergate scandal her balanced optimism and realism was just what the nation needed. 6) Nancy Reagan: The Role of a Lifetime - Her husband's agenda was her agenda, and while the public saw a traditional First Lady redecorating the White House, Nancy Reagan was much more involved with personnel and policy issue than most people realized.

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