Presidential Trivia – Lyndon Baines Johnson

Think you know a lot about the President of the United States?  Let us dig down into the dustbin of history and see what we can find.

Our candidate today is:  Lyndon Baines Johnson, 36th President of the United States

  • Born: August 27, 1908 near Stonewall, Texas
  • Died: January 22, 1973 of a heart attack; he died on a plane flying to a San Antonio hospital from the same LBJ family ranch he was born on
  • Height: 6’0″
  • Childhood and school activities:  baseball, public speaking
  • Education:  Graduated from Southwest Texas State Teachers’ College in 1930, edited the college newspaper
  • Military Service:  United States Navy 1941-1942, final rank Lieutenant Commander, awarded the Silver Star
  • Civilian profession: Teacher, Congressional aide, politician
  • Married to Claudia Alta “Lady Bird” Taylor (December 22, 1912 – July 11, 2007) on November 17, 1934, at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church in San Antonio, Texas
  • The ring that LBJ gave Mrs. Johnson on their wedding day was bought at Sears for $2.50
  • Children: daughters Lynda and Luci
  • Political Party – Democrat
  • Term of office:  November 22, 1963 – January 20, 1969
  • Became Vice-President to President John F. Kennedy in a compromise to win southern “Dixie-crats” despite the acrimony with all the Kennedy family
  • As Vice-President, Kennedy kept LBJ busy making him head of the President’s Committee on Equal Employment Opportunities and as Chairman of the National Aeronautics Space Council
  • Sworn in as President aboard Air Force One in Dallas, Texas just 2 hours after the assassination of President Kennedy

Lyndon B. Johnson taking oath of office November 1963

  • President Johnson was the only President to take Oath of Office on an airplane (Air Force One)
  • He was the only President to be administered the oath by a woman (Federal Judge Sarah T. Hughes)
  • He was the only President to take the oath with a woman serving as his witness (Jacqueline Kennedy).
  • Johnson steadily escalated U.S. military involvement in Vietnam, increasing the number of American troops from 16,000 when he first took office in 1963 to over 500,000
  • Famous quote: “Just like the Alamo, somebody damn well needed to go to their aid. Well, by God, I’m going to Vietnam’s aid.”
  • Despite passing massive civil rights legislation racial unrest, riots, and violent demonstrations were commonplace throughout his presidency
  • President and Mrs. Johnson received the first Medicare cards upon his signing of the enacting legislation
  • Despite his Christian upbringing, LBJ was famous for his profanity, streams of cursing could often be heard through the oval office door during meetings
  • Not only were President Johnson’s initials LBJ, so were the initials of his wife and both daughters
  • Famous quotes:

You do not examine legislation in the light of the benefits it will convey if properly administered, but in the light of the wrongs it would do and the harms it would cause if improperly administered.

Yesterday is not ours to recover, but tomorrow is ours to win or lose.

There are no favorites in my office. I treat them all with the same general inconsideration.

The fact that a man is a newspaper reporter is evidence of some flaw of character.

The men who have guided the destiny of the United States have found the strength for their tasks by going to their knees. This private unity of public men and their God is an enduring source of reassurance for the people of America.

Official Presidential portrait of Lyndon Baines Johnson

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