Patricia “Tricia” Nixon Cox is the elder daughter of President Richard Nixon, the 37th US president, and First Lady Pat Nixon. She was born in California and raised in Washington, DC. She earned a BA degree in English from ‘Boston College.’ She had already completed college when her father became the president of the US. Compared to several other presidential daughters, she always led a private life and was dubbed the “Mystery Princess” of the ‘White House.’ In 1971, she married Edward Cox at the ‘White House Rose Garden’ and was considered one of the most beautiful ‘White House’ brides. Though not involved politically, she traveled with her president father and represented the US in various countries of the world. Cox and her sister stood by President Nixon during the political turmoil that occurred during his tenure and the subsequent resignation of Richard Nixon that followed. She serves on the boards of various institutions and is also associated with the ‘Richard Nixon Foundation.’ Cox stays in Manhattan, with her lawyer husband and her only son.
Childhood & Early Life
Cox was born on February 21, 1946, in Whittier, California. She was named “Patricia” after her mother, First Lady Pat, but she preferred the shortened form, “Tricia.” She has a younger sister, Julie Nixon Eisenhower. She spent her earlier years in Washington, DC. Initially, she studied at the ‘Horace Mann Elementary School’ and then joined the ‘Sidwell Friends School.’ She also attended the all-girl ‘Chapin School’ in Manhattan.
Cox was introduced to the high society (as a debutante) at the ‘1964 International Debutante Ball,’ a charity event at the ‘Waldorf-Astoria Hotel.’ Edward Finch Cox, who was a freshman at ‘Princeton University’ back then, was her escort at the debutante ball. Their friendship led to rumors of their impending marriage and even of their elopement.
At first, she joined the now-defunct women’s college known as ‘Finch College,’ in New York, to be near her family. However, she later completed her graduation from ‘Boston College,’ Boston, Massachusetts. Her father was the special guest speaker at the graduation function when she graduated with a BA degree in English in 1968.
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By the time her father became the president of the US, Cox had already completed her college education. She mostly kept to herself and received the tag of the “Mystery Princess” of the ‘White House.’ On March 17, 1971, she called her first press conference and announced that she would be getting married to Edward Ridley Finch Cox, whom she had known for 7 years by then. Later, in 1972, he completed his law degree from ‘Harvard Law School.’
The two got married on June 12, 1971, at the ‘White House Rose Garden.’ No other child of a US president had been married at the ‘White House Rose Garden’ before Cox. After her marriage, she got busy with her domestic life, as her family and her home were always important for her. Their son, Christopher Nixon Cox, was born in March 1979.
Cox is on the board of directors of the ‘National Stroke Association,’ founded in 1984, and the ‘Nixon Center,’ founded in 1994. She is also on the boards of various medical research institutions and the ‘Richard Nixon Foundation’ at the ‘Richard Nixon Presidential Library,’ California.
During the political commotion and the ‘Watergate’ issue in her father’s career, Cox and her sister firmly stood by his side. The sisters felt that Nixon’s policies had been misrepresented in the TV series ‘The Vietnam War.’ The two wrote a letter together, through the ‘Nixon Foundation,’ to clarify the misunderstanding about their father.
Cox and her sister, Julie, have always been close to each other. However, after Richard Nixon’s death, there was a dispute over the operations of the ‘Richard Nixon Presidential Library.’ The Coxes wanted family control over the major decisions of the library, while the Eisenhowers wanted a large board of directors with professionals to take charge of running the library. In 1997, the two sisters were involved in a lawsuit against each other over how the library should be run. However, later, the sisters resolved the issue by talking it out.
Presently, Tricia Nixon Cox lives with her corporate lawyer husband, Edward Finch Cox, on Manhattan’s East Side 5th Avenue. The couple has a son, Christopher Nixon Cox, who is a lawyer.