Bob Woodward: Biography & Books

Instructor: Natarielle Powell
In this lesson we'll look at the famous journalist Bob Woodward's biography and list some of his books, including the famous work on the Watergate Scandal, All the President's Men. Then you can test your knowledge with a quiz.

Bob Woodward
bob wooward

Bob's Early Life

Although this prominent author is known to the world as Bob Woodward, his actual name is Robert Upshur Woodward. He was born in Geneva, Illinois on March 26, 1943. His parents were Jane and Alfred Woodward. His dad was a lawyer and like many fathers, he hoped that Bob would want to follow in his footsteps to become one too, but Bob had journalism on his mind.

Education and the Navy

For Woodward, education and the Navy went hand-in-hand. He went to college on an ROTC (Reserved Officers' Training Corp) scholarship. He attended Yale University and studied history and English literature. After graduation, he entered the Navy and served for five years. He was set to return to school to study at Harvard Law School, but he decided to begin a career in journalism instead.

A young Woodward, right, in his element with Carl Bernstein, left

Working at the Washington Post

Bob Woodward had such a passion to become a journalist that he agreed to work for The Washington Post for two weeks without any pay! I think it's safe to say that that's real drive to become a journalist! At the end of this trial period, The Washington Post didn't even hire him to become a part of the staff. The editor didn't think he was experienced enough as a journalist to continue working with The Washington Post. Instead the editor arranged for Woodward to work as a reporter at The Montgomery County Sentinel.

In 1971, after working at The Montgomery County Sentinel for one year, Woodward landed a reporting job at The Washington Post.

Richard Nixon

Woodward and the Watergate Scandal

Okay, here's where things get way more interesting. Woodward was assigned to work with reporter,Carl Bernstein, on a story that changed his life forever: the Watergate Scandal.

Most people connect Watergate to the political corruption that was going on in the White House in the early 1970's, but Watergate is actually a super-nice hotel where a lot of corruption took place.

In 1972, five men known as the 'Watergate Burglars' were arrested for breaking into the headquarters of the Democratic National Committee at the Watergate office complex. They had cameras and other stolen video equipment. This started the investigation by Woodward and his writing partner, Carl Bernstein. They had an informant (a person who provides special information and whose identity is kept a secret) who they called Deep Throat that gave some very helpful information.

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