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The President, February - March 1967

LBJ Library & Museum

Sound | 1967

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    • LBJ LBJ
    • Lady Bird Johnson Lady Bird Johnson
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    This footage, produced by The White House Naval Photographic Unit, presents the activities of President Johnson in February and March of 1967. February and March were busy months for President Johnson that saw him busily and aggressively pursuing aspects of his agenda. President Johnson met with foreign dignitaries including King Hassan II of Morocco, the Emperor of Ethiopia, and the Malta Ambassador Arvid Pardo. On the domestic front President Johnson signed the 25th amendment, presented the National Medal of Science and the National Medal of Honor, and continued to push forward in his war on poverty initiatives. Though the two months kept President Johnson busy with a variety of events, the footage makes clear that his attention was particularly focused on attempts to find a peaceful solution to the Vietnam War.

    The films created by The White House Naval Photographic Unit documented the life of the President and first family in both an official and unofficial capacity. During the early years of the Johnson administration the films primarily documented ceremonial events, but in June 1966 monthly reports concerning the President began being produced. The monthly reports provide insight into a range of the President's activities by documenting and presenting a clear portrayal of what the President did in that month. The monthly reports also captured happenings in the life of the first family.

    Courtesy of the LBJ Library, film by the White House Naval Photographic Center, Serial # MP882.

    Thirty-sixth president of the United States, Lyndon Baines Johnson, was born on a hill country farm near Stonewall, Texas on August 27, 1908, to Samuel Ealy Johnson, a former Texas legislator, and Rebekah Baines Johnson. He attended Southwest Teachers College, now Texas State University, graduating with a degree in history and social science in 1930. LBJ spent one year as principal and teacher in Cotulla, educating impoverished Hispanic elementary school students. LBJ became the secretary to Texas Congressman Richard M. Kleberg in 1931; the four-year position helped him gain influential contacts in Washington. Johnson married Claudia Alta “Lady Bird” Taylor on November 17, 1934.
    LBJ acted as Director of the National Youth Administration in Texas from 1935 to 1937. Johnson won his first legislative election in 1937 for the Tenth Congressional District, a position he held for 11 years. He was a firm supporter of President Roosevelt’s New Deal and in 1940 acted as Chairman of the Democratic Campaign Committee. In 1948, following his service as a Lieutenant Naval Commander during World War II, LBJ ran as the Democratic nominee for Senate. In a cloud of controversy, he narrowly defeated former Texas Governor Coke Stevens and easily beat his Republican opponent in the general election. Before winning his second senate term, LBJ was elected Majority Whip in 1951, became the youngest ever Minority Senate Leader in 1953, and was voted Majority Leader in 1954. Johnson unsuccessfully ran for the Democratic presidential nomination in 1960 but was selected to be Vice President under John F. Kennedy. 
    Lyndon Johnson was sworn in as Commander and Chief aboard Air Force One following President Kennedy’s assassination on November 22, 1963, and won reelection in 1964. President Johnson passed landmark legislation with the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Debate over military efforts in Vietnam intensified in late 1963 when the President stated that the United States would not withdraw from Southeast Asia. Escalation of the war against North Vietnam brought disapproval from Democrats, claiming the efforts were misguided, and from Republicans who criticized the administration for not executing sufficient military vigor. Antiwar protests, urban riots, and racial tension eroded Johnson’s political base by 1967, which further dissolved following the Tet Offensive in January 1968. On March 31, 1968, President Johnson announced that we would not seek a second presidential term.
    After returning to Texas, Johnson oversaw the construction of the Lyndon Baines Johnson Library and Museum on the University of Texas campus in Austin. Throughout his political career, LBJ was an influential figure in Texas affairs; his policies brought military bases, crop subsidies, government facilities, and federal jobs to the state. After suffering a massive heart attack, former President Johnson died at his ranch on January 22, 1973. In February of the same year, NASA’s Manned Spacecraft Center in Houston was renamed the Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center, in honor of one of the country’s most influential Texans. 
    Claudia Alta “Lady Bird” Taylor was born in Karnack, Texas on December 22, 1912. Lady Bird, the nickname given by nursemaid Alice Tittle, attended high school in Marshall and junior college at Dallas’ St. Mary’s Episcopal College for Women. In 1933 through 1934, she received a Bachelor of Arts in history and a Bachelor of Journalism from the University of Texas at Austin. 
    Mutual friends introduced Lady Bird to congressional aide and rising political star, Lyndon Baines Johnson. LBJ proposed on the couple’s first date and the two were married a month later on November 17, 1934. Lady Bird financed her husband’s first congressional campaign for Austin’s Tenth District using a portion of her maternal inheritance. During World War II, Lady Bird ran the congressional office while LBJ served in the US Navy.  In 1943, Lady Bird purchased Austin Radio station KTBC. The station proved an integral part of the LBJ Holding Company and became the main source of the Johnson family’s fortune. 
    LBJ’s political career gained momentum in the post war years, and in 1960, he became Vice President to John F. Kennedy. Lyndon Johnson was sworn in as Commander and Chief aboard Air Force One following President Kennedy’s assassination on November 22, 1963. As first lady, Lady Bird initiated the Society for a More Beautiful National Capitol and worked with the American Association of Nurserymen to promote the planting of wildflowers along highways. In 1964, the first lady traveled through eight southern states aboard her train, “The Lady Bird Special,” to foster support for LBJ’s presidential re-election and the Civil Rights Act. She was influential in promoting the Highway Beautification Act of 1965, referred to as “Lady Bird’s Bill,” and the Head Start program .
    Following the death of LBJ in 1973, Lady Bird turned her attention to Austin. The Town Lake Beautification Project transformed Austin’s downtown lake, renamed Lady Bird Lake in 2007, into a useable recreation area. On December 22, 1982, Lady Bird and Helen Hays founded the National Wildflower Research Center outside of Austin. The Wildflower Center was established to increase awareness and research for North American flora.  During her lifetime, the former first lady received the highest civilian award, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, in 1977 and the Congressional Gold Medal in 1988. Lady Bird died of natural causes on July 11, 2007, survived by two daughters, seven grandchildren, and  ten great-grandchildren. 
    President Johnson
    Lyndon Baines Johnson
    February, 1967
    Air Force base
    The White House
    Ho Chi Minh
    press conference
    The President February-March 1967
    Malta Ambassador
    Arvid Pardo
    National Medal of Science
    Hubert Humphrey
    Vice President Humphrey
    First Lady Johnson
    Lady Bird Johnson
    King Hassan II
    King Hassan II of Morroco
    The Lincoln Memorial
    Abraham Lincoln
    The Washington Monument
    state flags
    Emperor of Ethiopia
    Haile Selassie
    Tafari Mekonnen
    David Lilienthal
    Robert Palmer
    signing the 25th Amendment
    war on poverty
    public order
    public safety
    war on crime
    Stewart Udall
    First Lady
    Lady Bird Johnson
    Mrs. Diaz Ordaz
    First Lady of Mexico
    March 8, 1967
    monkey bars
    fireman's pole
    Specialist 6, Lawrence Joel
    Medal of Honor
    March 9, 1967
    press conference
    Presidential Unit Citation
    3rd Aerospace rescue and recovery group
    Supreme Court Justice Tom Clark
    Supreme Court Justice
    Tom Clark
    Ramsey Clark
    Attorney General
    Arthur Goldberg
    the Great Society
    Pancho Mansera
    Education tour
    Head Start
    Adventures in Learning
    West Virginia
    North Carolina
    school bus
    the Sunrise Cultural Center
    school lunch
    chef hat
    Thomas Wolfe
    dirt road
    Western Carolina College
    library dedication
    Hunter Library Wing
    press corps
    Ambassador Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr.
    General William Westmoreland
    the hermitage
    Andrew Jackson
    horse drawn carriage
    Tennessee State Legislature
    Secretary General
    military tombs
    Frank Swanson
    Paul Ray
    Nicholas Kelly
    Alfred G. Rettum
    Hail to the Chief
    Chairman Thieu
    Prime Minister Ky
    Robert McNamara
    Ellsworth Bunker
    bi-lateral treaty
    Prime Minister of Afghanistan
    Vietnam War
    armed forces