Freda Reiter – Haldeman Questioned by Richard Ben-Veniste – Pastel Drawing

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The cover-up trial in 1974 was centered on Nixon’s closest advisors, among them chief of staff H.R. Haldeman, cross-examined by assistant special prosecutor Richard Ben-Veniste in a heated scene. Reiter includes Haldeman’s daughter Ann.

Pastel Drawing, 17″ x 14″

Signature (detail)

Watergate exhibition page

Freda L. Reiter


Since cameras were banned from courtrooms, news outlets depended on professional sketch artists like Freda Reiter for visuals. When Reiter was assigned the Watergate burglary trial, in 1973, she had no idea that she would be spending the better part of two years in Washington.

Watergate Courtroom Sketches by Freda L. Reiter, 1973–75

To provide sufficient visuals for the substantial airtime allotted to the story each night, Reiter made multiple sketches a day: close-up portraits, as well as wide-angle views of the courtroom incorporating as many as 28 figures.