A dive into the archives at the Nixon Presidential Library in Yorba Linda took two years but at the end of the exploration curators uncovered evidence of a fondness between President Donald Trump and former President Richard Nixon.
"We were able to find that there exists thirteen letters between the two men from 1982 to 1993. They had a real friendship," says Jim Byron, Vice President of the Nixon Foundation.
Museum archivists learned about the relationship from a comment Trump made in 2016. He referred to a note the former President sent after Trump's appearance on the television talk show "Donahue."
Nixon wrote: "As you can imagine, she is an expert on politics and she predicts that whenever you decide to run for office you will be a winner!"
The note and photos of Trump's television debut as a real estate tycoon in his thirties is part of a prominent display at the library.
The two first met at the 21 Club eight years after the Watergate Scandal forced Nixon out of office and they were both living in Manhattan.
The two exchanged words of admiration in each personally signed note.
"I am proud to know you," says Trump who praised Nixon for his handling of the Vietnam war.
Nixon wrote of "deep appreciation for your generous contribution to the Viet Nam Day Celebration."
Separated in age by three decades the two bridged the gap with football.
Trump was an owner of the New Jersey Generals in the US Football League. Nixon a former lineman offered tips.
Trump responded: "Your counsel on offensive linemen is exactly correct. For Herschel Walker to have gained 1700 yards with almost no line is incredible."
Nixon talked business.
"The people in the stands, apart from what they pay for their tickets, are indispensable props for the television broadcast which in the future is where the real money lies," wrote Nixon.
The former President offered sympathy when Trump's empire was faltering and bad press followed.
Nixon wrote: "Dear Donald - I know nothing about the intricacies of your business enterprises but the massive media attack on you puts me in your corner!"
The letters suggest at least one motive for Trump to cultivate the relationship.
Trump writes: "One of my great ambitions is to have the Nixons as residents in Trump Tower."
The exhibition at the Nixon Presidential Library in Yorba Linda celebrates the museum's reopening to the public after being shuttered for six months.
Mutual admiration between Nixon and Trump revealed in letters archived at presidential library in Yorba Linda