On this day in 1964, President Johnson made remarks at a luncheon for the U.S. Olympic Medal Winners.
“The American people are very proud of their 1964 Olympic team. They are proud of what you have accomplished and, what is more important, they are proud of what you are.
“You have symbolized for all of us Americans what taking part—a genuine, dedicated, all-out taking part—can produce, and we salute you with a pride that carries the fullest measure of American gratitude for all the people who are privileged to be citizens of the same country that you claim.”
On this day in 1964, President Johnson made remarks at the Ground-Breaking Ceremony for the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.
“This center will reflect the finest artistic achievements of our time. It is our hope that it will house the leading artists and performers. Almost every industrialized nation in the world, on both sides of the Iron Curtain, has one or more national centers for the arts. Washington has lagged behind. Far too often, American actors and singers and musicians must travel to foreign countries to even be heard. Now, because of President Kennedy’s leadership and your efforts, they will have a stage here in the Capital of their own country.”
On this day in 1966, President Johnson had a telephone conversation with the author, John Steinbeck. The conversation took place when the President was at the LBJ Ranch.
The two men talked about the trip Steinbeck and his wife, Elaine, were about to take to Vietnam, and about Steinbeck’s sons’ military service. Steinbeck asked about signs of progress in Vietnam. LBJ told Steinbeck to be careful on his trip and to meet with him after he returned.
On this day in 1968, President Johnson made remarks at the final meeting of the President’s Commission for the Observance of Human Rights Year 1968.
“Well, officially 1968 has been designated as Human Rights Year by the General Assembly of the United Nations. Officially, this is the 20th anniversary of the issuance of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
“But putting aside official justification, Americans truly and personally identify with human rights as few nations in history ever have.
“We were born as a nation on a declaration of political rights which also stated universal and timeless ideals that we believe apply to all men, in all places, at all times—life, liberty, and happiness.
“We must do everything that we can, therefore, to help restore a sense of community, a sense of belonging, and a sense of respect, so as to make real the ultimate human right which is really respect for life itself.”
On this day in 1963, President Johnson announced that he had made an agreement with House Speaker John W. McCormack on temporary succession to the Presidency in the event that LBJ became disabled.
On this day in 1963, The Johnson family moved into the White House. The President held his first news conference.
On this day in 1962, on a boating trip at the LBJ Ranch, the Vice President’s boat’s battery died and it was towed in by Secret Service.
On this day in 1963, upon passage of the Higher Education Facilities Bill, President Johnson commended the United States Congress as the “Education Congress of 1963.”
On this day in 1971, LBJ assisted Mrs. Johnson at a tree planting ceremony inaugurating Austin’s “Town Lake Beautification” program.
On this day in 1963, President Johnson instructed Cabinet officers to hold civilian employees in the Government below 1964 and 1963 budget levels and to make further savings.
“I intend to disapprove any budget request for more personnel except where the facts leave me no choice," the President said in a statement to the Cabinet.
Earlier, the President went to the Pentagon to address military and civilian officials of the Defense Department, stressing that the department was responsible for half the national budget and as a result must make “the largest effort and achieve the biggest savings.”
On this day in 1963, President Johnson sent a letter to the Senate and House Committee Chairmen on renaming the National Cultural Center in honor of President John Kennedy.
It seems to me that a center for the performing arts on the beautiful site selected would be one of the most appropriate memorials that a grateful nation could establish to honor a man who had such deep and abiding convictions about the importance of cultural activities in our national life. In this connection it is my understanding that the Kennedy family would prefer to have the Center named “The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts” in order to indicate more specifically the nature of the memorial to him.
On this day in 1967, President Johnson signed a bill amending the Federal Credit Union Act.
“The bill that I sign today, we think, strengthens our Federal credit unions. It allows them to:
“Lend money more easily
“Pay dividends twice as often, and
“It allows them to pay dividends for a whole month on deposits received during the first 10 days of the month.
“A credit union can be another weapon in the war on poverty.”
On this day in 1964, President Johnson had a telephone conversation with Attorney General Nicholas Katzenbach.
The two men discussed the Voting Rights bill, ways to improve voter registration, and a possible constitutional amendment. LBJ talked about setting a goal of 100% voting.
On this day in 1967, President Johnson signed a bill amending the Flammable Fabrics Act.
“This law does not blacklist anyone. It won’t put any reputable firm out of business. It will protect the honest manufacturer. But it will protect him from unscrupulous manufacturers and unscrupulous competition.”
On this day in 1967, President Johnson signed an act that extended the civil rights commission for five years. This was the only civil rights legislation passed during 1967.
On this day in 1963, President Johnson approved the Higher Education Facilities Act (PL 88-204) which authorized a five-year program of federal grants and loans for construction or improvement of public and private higher education academic facilities.
This was the first large education program enacted by Congress since the National Defense Education Act of 1958, and it was the first broad education bill enacted in the post-world War II period that was not tied to national defense. It included funding for:
- College classrooms
- 25-30 new public/community colleges per year
- Construction of technical institutes for trained manpower
- Graduate schools and facilities in 10-20 academic centers
- Improvement of public libraries in universities and colleges
- An increase in the number of medical school graduates
- Expansion of the student loan program
- Expanded Federal/State vocational aid
- Training personnel to train and teach handicapped children
- Expanded programs for science, math, and foreign languages
- Assistance for schools with federal personnel
- Public libraries across the country
On this day in 1963, President Johnson wrote a message on the occasion of the Launching of the Nuclear Submarine Sam Rayburn.
Speaker Rayburn was dedicated to peace, freedom, and the integrity of the individual. And we do ourselves honor when we walk in his footsteps.
We are today dedicating in his name a vessel which has been made possible by the knowledge gleaned by modern science and which will enter the service of our country. It is the fulfillment of the dedicated work of the Americans who conceived it and the Americans who built it.
To all who have participated in this enterprise and to the men who will command the Sam Rayburn, Godspeed! Your country thanks you and wishes you well.
On this day in 1966, President Johnson had a telephone conversation with Secretary of State Dean Rusk. The conversation occurred when the President was at the LBJ Ranch.
LBJ complained to Rusk about the Democratic Governors with whom he had met that day; the Governors had had concerns about the poverty program, patronage, and civil rights. Rusk reported on questions he had received at a press conference.
On this day in 1961, Vice President Johnson attended Nita Louise Kellam’s wedding in Austin.
On this day in 1963, President Johnson wrote a memorandum establishing the Committee on the Economic Impact of Defense and Disarmament.
The Committee will be responsible for the review and coordination of activities in the various departments and agencies designed to improve our understanding of the economic impact of defense expenditures and of changes either in the composition or in the total level of such expenditures.
Federal outlays for defense are of such magnitude that they inevitably have major economic significance. In certain regions of the Nation and in certain communities they provide a significant share of total employment and income. It is therefore important that we improve our knowledge of the economic impacts of such spending, so that appropriate actions can be taken—in cooperation with State and local governments, private industry and labor—to minimize potential disturbances which may arise from changes in the level and pattern of defense outlays.
On this day in 1964, President Johnson met with the Joint Chiefs of Staff at the LBJ Ranch front lawn for discussions about Vietnam.
On this day in 1963, President Johnson made remarks at a Candlelight Memorial Service for President Kennedy and the Lighting of the Nation’s Christmas Tree.
“So let us here on this Christmas night determine that John Kennedy did not live or die in vain, that this Nation under God shall have a new birth of freedom, and that we may achieve in our time and for all time the ancient vision of peace on earth, good will toward all men.”
On this day in 1968, President Johnson was honored for his contributions in the field of education. He spoke to educational leaders saying,
“I am so grateful to you for this very generous and very thoughtful act. I am not responsible for what has been done nearly as much as you people who have come here and knocked down the doors, twisted the arms, and tried to help us bring these programs to reality.”
On this day in 1968, LBJ made remarks by telephone to the Apollo 8 crew members following their return from the moon.
"You have made us very proud to be alive at this particular moment in history. You have made us feel akin to those Europeans nearly five centuries ago who heard stories of the New World for the first time. There is just no other comparison that we can make that is equal to what you have done or to what we feel.
“I had a memorandum a short time ago from the men who handle the Washington-Moscow hotline. And I thought you would be interested in a portion of that memorandum to the President.
“It said that due to the interest of the Soviets in the Apollo program, we asked them, after we heard from them on Apollo 7, if they would be interested in being informed of developments in Apollo 8. The hotline personnel in Moscow responded enthusiastically and asked us to keep them posted. So we informally, here at the hotline in Washington, relayed information in regard to the most important aspects of your flight, and the Soviets were very solicitous about the welfare of you astronauts and expressed great interest in the success of your flight.
“Now, we all know that you men were supported by an elaborate technical apparatus and by many brilliant and devoted men and women here on the ground. We salute all of them as we salute you.”
On this day in 1964, President Johnson wrote a letter to Secretary McNamara transmitting Final Report of the President’s Committee on Equal Opportunity in the Armed Forces.
The Defense Department has, I believe, done an excellent job in resolving many aspects of the general problem of discriminatory treatment of those who serve in the Nation's Armed Forces. I would hope that the momentum already achieved in moving toward the Nation's objective of equality of treatment and opportunity for all servicemen would continue until every vestige of the problem has been eliminated.
On this day in 1964, President Johnson issued Proclamation 3632: Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea.
On this day in 1963, President Johnson made remarks in Austin, Texas, at the dedication of the Agudas Achim Synagogue.
“On Thanksgiving Day, Mrs. Johnson and I attended a worship service in Washington. The sermon then was delivered by Rabbi Stanley Rabinowitz. The Rabbi told this story, which I have remembered so vividly ever since Thanksgiving Day. He said once, in the past, birds had no wings. They could not fly. They walked in the dust, earthbound. Then one day God threw wings at their feet and commanded them to carry the wings. At first this seemed very difficult. The burden was heavy. But in obedience to God’s will, they held the wings closely to their sides and the wings soon grew to their bodies. At last, what they once thought were hampering weights lifted them unto the heights and enabled them to soar unto the very gates of heaven.
“We cannot always do God’s purpose, but we can always try to do His will. The man who does, and the nation whose people do, have the hope of reaching new heights.
“Mr. Novy, our Constitution wisely separates church and state, separates religion and Government. But this does not mean that men of Government should divorce themselves from religion. On the contrary, a first responsibility of national leadership, as I see it, is spiritual leadership, for I deeply believe that America will prevail not because her pocketbooks are big, but because the principles of her people are strong.
“We have met a great test, and we have met it well. But I would remind you tonight that history is not through with us. Great nations must meet many tests. We shall face many more in the days to come. It is my hope, and your prayer, that the tests of the future will find us all working in brotherhood to put down the hate of the present, to prevail over evil, to work with mercy and compassion among the afflicted, to be in all that we do worthy to be called God’s children.”
On this day in 1963, President Johnson sent a telegram to the Chairman, United Negro College Development Campaign.
Delighted with the report United Negro College Fund has raised twenty million dollars and is therefore nearly half way to completion of capital requirements. Hope you and your excellent committee will continue task begun in this Centennial Year of the Emancipation Proclamation at least through first quarter of 1964 in an all-out effort to reach the fifty million dollar goal.
The telegram was made public as part of a White House release which noted that the fund-raising campaign would benefit 32 Negro colleges.
On this day in 1966, President Johnson had a telephone conversation with Arthur Goldberg, the U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. The conversation occurred when the President was at the LBJ Ranch.
The two men talked about the U.S.S.R offer to influence Hanoi. LBJ discussed U.S. willingness to negotiate, the failure of peace efforts, the inevitability of civilian casualties during bombing, U.S. relations with the U.S.S.R., Hanoi’s continued aggression despite U.S. limitations, and China.