Sunday, April 23, 2023

Number 36


Lyndon Baines Johnson, or LBJ, was born in Stonewall, Texas, on August 27, 1908. Born to a political family, he was destined for politics, and began his career as a Congressional aide.  In 1937, he was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, where he served for six terms.

In 1948, he was elected to the U.S. Senate.  Over the next twelve years, he'd serve in a variety of positions, including Majority Whip, Chair of the Senate Democratic Caucus, Minority Leader, and eventually Majority Leader.

In 1960, LBJ made his first bid for the White House, but was ultimately bested by John F. Kenndy, Jr., who shocked pundits and the public alike when he asked his former rival to serve as Vice-President.

Following Kennedy's assassination in 1963, LBJ was sworn in as President. The following year, he'd win re-election in a landslide victory over Arizona Senator Barry Goldwater.

When he left the White House in 1969, he returned to his native Texas, where he'd later pen his memoirs (see Trivia below). A lifetime of smoking would eventually catch up with him however, and he'd suffer multiple heart attacks.  The last one took his life on January 22, 1973, just two days after Richard Nixon was sworn in for his second term as President.

Johnson was returned to his ranch in Stonewall and was buried in the family cemetery, just a few yards from the very shack in which he was born.  Today, its a national historical park overseen by the U.S. Department of the Interior.

Rest in peace.


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