After working in company and government, in 1958, Nelson Rockefeller was elected governor of New York, serving four terms. Afterwards, in 1974, he was named vice president of America by President Gerald Ford. An avid art collector and patron, Nelson Rockefeller died in Nyc in 1979. A wing of New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art is named in his honour. Considering his pedigree, it is no surprise Nelson Aldrich Rockefeller climbed to be a political powerhouse.
Headstrong and filled with vigor, Nelson had a difficult relationship with his dad, who attempted to bestow on his kids the values of modesty and restraint—qualities deemed to be of little use by the ambitious young Nelson. By many reports, Nelson Rockefeller was the leader among his siblings along with his mom’s favorite. Even as a kid, he spoke of becoming president one day.
Following a nine-month honeymoon, he worked in the London and Paris branches of Chase National Bank—a company owned in substantial part by the Rockefeller family. In 1931, regardless of the nation’s entry to the throes of Great Depression, earth had broken on Rockefeller Center, which were started by John D. Rockefeller Jr. in the late 1920s and was the biggest private construction project in New York City at the time. Joining the staff managing the Centre development, Nelson rapidly climbed through the ranks by helping shepherd the challenging endeavor by means of a period of financial chaos.
His tenure, nevertheless, wasn’t without controversy: In 1934, he magnificently ordered the demolition of a mural by Mexican artist Diego Rivera, entitled “Man at the Crossroads,” which depicted Soviet leader Vladmir Lenin. While he’d commissioned Rivera to finish a mural in the RCA building, situated at Rockefeller Center, Nelson (along with several others who managed to see the work before it was publicly unveiled) disliked Rivera’s insertion of Lenin—an inclusion that was neither approved nor understood about in advance. The artist had apparently contained the Soviet leader in his mural in a effort to depict the troubled political feeling at that time, that has been mainly defined by conflicting capitalist and socialist ideologies and escalating anxieties about the advancement of the Communist Party.
An ensuing print backlash against the Rockefellers—who, after long proclaiming a deep commitment to the artwork, now seemed both hypocritical and tyrannical—allegedly humiliated Nelson’s mom, Abby Rockefeller, who, in response to the adverse marketing, said that she’d never wanted the mural to be ruined. It was for this reason chiefly that Rockefeller Center made a decision to ruin it.”
During his time in Nyc, Rockefeller’s interest in authorities started to glow through. In 1933, he served as an associate of the Westchester County (New York) Board of Health. Nelson would after receive presidential appointments by Harry S. Truman, Dwight D. Eisenhower and Richard Nixon. His remarkable career in public service would finally help incorporate the Rockefeller name using the American political arena.
In 1958, Nelson Rockefeller successfully campaigned for the governorship of New York—a success that made him an immediate contender for the Republican presidential nomination in 1960. Although Rockefeller lost the nomination to the more conservative Richard Nixon, he’d to try and win the party’s nomination again in 1964. That offer additionally met with failure, as his effort became mired in controversy surrounding his divorce from wife Mary Todhunter Clark Rockefeller and subsequent marriage to the considerably younger Margaretta “Happy” Murphy. Although he did not find success as a presidential nominee (he ran unsuccessfully again in 1968), Nelson Rockefeller gained high praise for his work as governor of New York State, serving four consecutive terms in that place. A progressive Republican, he focused on education, welfare, housing, transport as well as the arts.
In 1974, only one year after stepping down as governor, Nelson Rockefeller was nominated for the U.S. vice presidency by President Gerald Ford. He later served as vice president, under Ford, from 1974 to ’77. The Rockefellers – Complete Biography (TV14; 45:13) The Rockefellers have been a driving force in American business and philanthropy since the 19th century. Among them began conventional petroleum, another rolled up artwork and ran for President.