The American Bicentennial
President Ford and Queen Elizabeth II dances at the Bicentennial Celebration of the American Independence in 1976. The Queen and Prince Philip were in Washington D.C. to mark the occasion and the formal state dinner was held in the Rose Garden on July 7, 1976. When two heads of state meets, the protocol normally prohibits them from dancing together, to avoid the complications of who leads who. But on this occasion, it was the Queen who started to dance. The Marine band started playing ‘That’s Why the Lady is a Tramp.
The evening was not without a diplomatic faux pas. Jack Ford, the President’s son, burst in the reception room where the Queen was staying, half dressed. The embarrassed President and Mrs. Ford had to introduce Jack, with his shirt tails hanging out and no shoes on. The queen laughed and replied, ‘Oh don’t worry about it. I have one like it at home,’ using the inanimate pronoun the upperclass usually uses to refer to children.
In this speech at a state dinner, Gerald Ford discussed the mutual friendship of the United States and England, and notes that both countries have met what might have seemed like insurmountable challenges, and looks forward to success much like “those first stalwart Englishmen who settled here, and their descendants who forged an independent nation.” He hopes the democracies, working together, continue the defense of freedom. The speech ends with a toast to the Queen.