On this day in 1967, President Johnson met with Prime Minister Harold Holt of Australia in the Oval Office of the White House regarding Vietnam.
On this day in 1966, President Johnson had a telephone conversation with Senator Richard Russell. There are two parts of the conversation.
In the first, the men discussed the creation of a Senate Central Intelligence Agency watchdog subcommittee of the Foreign Relations Committee; the Georgia Governor’s race; an unfavorable poll on Vietnam; the election in the Dominican Republic; Cuba and the USSR; the composition of U.S. forces in Vietnam; and use of the reserves.
In the second part of the conversation, the two men talked about the appropriation bills; Russell suggested that LBJ impound funds. The men discussed school aid; the school lunch program; Rural Electrification Authority; inflation; the mid-term elections; the drop in LBJ’s approval rating; and Job Corps.
On this day in 1961, Vice President Johnson had surgery on his hands at Bethesda Naval Hospital.
On this day in 1965, President Johnson described the role of African Americans in America in an address entitled To Fulfill These Rights at Howard University, Washington, D.C.
“We seek not just freedom but opportunity. We seek not just legal equity but human ability, not just equality as a right and a theory but equality as a fact and a result.”
On this day in 1968, President Johnson met with President Jose Joaquin Trejos Fernandez of Costa Rica at the White House.
On this day in 1965, President Johnson met with Chancellor Ludwig Erhard of Germany at the White House.
On this day in 1964, President Johnson met with the Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi of Iran at the White House.
On this day in 1967, the Six-Day War began in the Middle East between Israel and its Arab neighbors Egypt, Jordan and Syria. The “Hot Line” was used for the first time for communication between President Johnson and Soviet Premier Alexsei Kosygin and was the topic of discussion in a telephone conversation between President Johnson and Defense Secretary Robert McNamara.
McNamara told the President that the Moscow Hot Line was operating and Soviet Premier Alexsei Kosygin was asking if LBJ was near the Hot Line machine; arrangements had been made for LBJ to receive a message; McNamara read a Soviet message about the Middle East crisis and LBJ asked McNamara’s advice about the response.
On this day in 1964, President Johnson made remarks and unveiled a Plaque in Honor of the 50th Anniversary of the ILGWU (International Ladies Garment Workers Union) Health Center.
On this day in 1968, President Johnson made a statement on the death of Senator Robert F. Kennedy.
“This is a time of tragedy and loss. Senator Robert Kennedy is dead.
“Robert Kennedy affirmed this country-affirmed the essential decency of its people, their longing for peace, their desire to improve conditions of life for all.
“During his life, he knew far more than his share of personal tragedy.
“Yet he never abandoned his faith in America. He never lost his confidence in the spiritual strength of ordinary men and women. He believed in the capacity of the young for excellence—and in the right of the old and poor to a life of dignity.
“Our public life is diminished by his loss.
“Mrs. Johnson and I extend our deepest sympathy to Mrs. Kennedy and his family. I have issued a proclamation calling upon our Nation to observe a day of mourning for Robert Kennedy.”
On this day in 1965, President Johnson met with Prime Minister Robert Gordon Menzies of Australia at the White House.
On this day in 1965, President Johnson had a telephone conversation with astronauts James McDivitt and Edward White after the successful completion of the Gemini 4 flight. The astronauts set a new space endurance record and Major White took a 23-minute walk in space.
THE PRESIDENT “I just wanted to say to you and Major White, ‘Well done.’ We are all in this country very proud of you and, I think, the entire world is grateful for what you have done and, particularly, for your safe return. You have both written your names in history and in our hearts. God bless you both and your very fine families.”
MAJOR MCDIVITT “Mr. President, you certainly make me proud saying something like that. As you know, this is one of the happiest days of my life.”
THE PRESIDENT “Major White, there are several million people in this country that have been wondering for 3 days what you were doing to Jim’s windshield when he called you a dirty dog.”
MAJOR WHITE “Mr. President, this is Major White.”
THE PRESIDENT “Major, there are several million people in this country that have been wondering for 3 days what you were doing to Jim’s windshield when he called you a dirty dog.”
MAJOR WHITE “There wasn't too much I could do. We were pretty close, but there wasn't much I could do about it.”
THE PRESIDENT “Well, we’re mighty glad that you have had a safe return. We’re all very proud of you, and we are looking forward to seeing you. Major McDivitt, you had a little trouble talking Ed back in from his walk the other day, do you think you might be able to persuade him to come to see us this weekend down in Texas if I can get down there?”
MAJOR WHITE “This is Major White on here still, sir. I'll get Major McDivitt on it. But I think that will be very fine. Just a moment.”
MAJOR MCDIVITT “Mr. President, this is Major McDivitt again.”
THE PRESIDENT “I said you had a little trouble talking Ed back in from his walk the other day, do you think you might be able to persuade him to come up to see me this week if I can get down to Texas?”
MAJOR MCDIVITT “Well, I don't think there will be any trouble whatsoever.”
THE PRESIDENT “Well, you talk to your families and we'll see if we can’t get together down at the ranch about Friday or Saturday. I’ve been saving a little something for you.”
MAYOR MCDIVITT “Yes, sir. It would make me the happiest man in the world. I’m sure this will make Ed equally happy.”
THE PRESIDENT “I heard Major White’s wife say she wanted to go to Colorado, but you tell her to just hold off that trip until you get up to the ranch. I’ll have my military aide get in touch with you in a day or two and I hope we can make it probably Saturday morning.”
MAJOR MCDIVITT “Yes, sir, we certainly would love that.”
THE PRESIDENT “Now, I just want to say this finally to the two of you. What you have done will never be forgotten. We can hope and we do pray that the time will come when all men of all nations will join together to explore space together, and walk side by side toward peace. And you two outstanding men have taken a long stride forward in mankind's progress. And everyone in this Nation and, I think, in the free world feels in your debt.”
MAJOR MCDIVITT “Thank you very much, sir, we appreciate that.”
On this day in 1968, President Johnson wrote a memorandum directing the development of contingency plans for oil spill emergencies. This memorandum was for Honorable Clark M. Clifford, Secretary of Defense; Honorable Stewart L. Udall, Secretary of the Interior; Honorable Alan S. Boyd, Secretary of Transportation; and Honorable Donald F. Hornig, Director, Office of Science and Technology.
The Nation’s readiness for responding promptly and effectively to an oil spill along our coasts and waterways is of increasing importance. On the recommendation of the National Council on Marine Resources and Engineering Development, I am asking you to assume special responsibilities in order to strengthen our preparedness to act in the event of such an emergency.
On this day in 1965, President Johnson had a telephone conversation with Senator Mike Mansfield. The recordings are in two parts.
In the first part of the conversation, LBJ asked Mansfield’s advice on Vietnam. They discussed the history of the U. S. role in Vietnam and General Westmoreland’s request for more troops. The men also talked about congressional doubts about the Vietnam policy, the bombing campaign, and South Vietnamese desertions. They talked about the situation in the Dominican Republic and Senator George Aiken's opposition to Asian economic aid.
In the second part of the conversation, President Johnson and Senator Mansfield discussed Maxwell Taylor's meeting with congressional leaders; press leaks; and Henry Cabot Lodge as U S. Ambassador to Vietnam. In addition, they talked about Senate opposition to a bill allowing William "Bozo" McKee to head the FAA; the foreign aid bill; and the situation in the Dominican Republic.
On this day in 1967, The USS Liberty, a U.S. Navy communications ship, was attacked off the Sinai coast. National Security Adviser Walt Rostow gave President Johnson the first report that the USS Liberty had been attacked in the Mediterranean. The Israeli government informed the U.S. government that they attacked the ship in error.
On this day in 1967, Soviet Premier Alexsei Kosygin told President Johnson that the Soviet government was prepared to act independently if Israel did not stop military action against Syria. President Johnson responded to Chairman Alexsei Kosygin’s message which threatened Soviet intervention in the Middle East, saying that the Israelis had agreed to a ceasefire.
On this day in 1965, President Johnson made remarks in Houston at the NASA Manned Spacecraft Center.
“All people have a new sense of thrill, and excitement, and anticipation about space exploration because of the flight of Gemini 4.
“The joy and the thrill and the exhilaration that Ed White experienced on his walk from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic ran through the veins of us all. Our attitudes about space will never entirely be the same again.
“And let me make one other observation. I read with mixed emotions yesterday that Major White had decided to claim this State of his birth as his home State. Well, as President, I am supposed to be neutral on matters of State pride, but the glimmer of pride I allow myself to feel is subdued just a bit. I know some will say that as soon as Americans got themselves up into space a Texan had to go and put his foot in it.
“Seriously, I hope that the clear and obvious meaning and promise of this great adventure, which all of you have really shared, will not be lost upon mankind.”
On this day in 1965, President Johnson issued Proclamation 3658: Flag Day, 1965.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, LYNDON B. JOHNSON, President of the United States of America, do hereby direct that the flag of the United States be displayed on all Government buildings on Monday, June 14, 1965, in observance of Flag Day and I call upon all fellow Americans to observe that day with appropriate ceremonies designed to honor our national emblem.
I urge every citizen to pledge once more his allegiance to our flag and to rededicate himself to the principles and ideals for which it is an inspiring tangible symbol. I also urge every American to remember the valiant sacrifices made by our forefathers and patriots through the years-both soldiers and civilians-in the name of our flag in order that our Nation might continue to be “the land of the free and the home of the brave.”
On this day in 1968, President Johnson gave a Message to the Congress Transmitting Annual Report on the National Wilderness Preservation System.
“I am pleased to transmit the fourth annual report on the status of the National Wilderness Preservation System, covering the year 1967.
“I recently transmitted to the Congress 26 recommended additions to the National Wilderness Preservation System. I urge that the Congress take early and favorable action on them.
“Each generation has its own rendezvous with the land. May ours be one that understands the heritage of America, that passes it on for the welfare and enjoyment of future generations."
On this day in 1965, President Johnson had a telephone conversation with Congressman Gerald Ford.
The conversation focused on the Vietnam War. The men discussed a B-52 bombing raid in South Vietnam, a statement by Melvin Laird, and the role of U.S. ground troops. Congressman Ford requested a meeting on troops. President Johnson complained about misleading press stories.
On this day in 1966, President Johnson wrote a memorandum on ethical conduct on the part of government officers and employees.
The traditions of honesty and integrity in the military and civil service of the United States are properly a source of pride for all Americans. We intend in this Administration to ensure that their pride and confidence are maintained and strengthened. We hold a public trust, and we shall hold it high.
I expect you to see to it that officers and employees throughout your agency adhere firmly and without compromise to their responsibility for fair and impartial dealings with all who have business with the Government.
On this day in 1964, President Johnson made a statement following Senate passage of the Civil Rights Bill.
“It is the product, not of any man or group of men, but of a broad national consensus that every person is entitled to justice, to equality, and to an even chance to enjoy the blessings of liberty. It is in the highest tradition of a civilization which, from the Magna Carta on, has used the fabric of law for the fulfillment of liberty.
“Lastly, this bill is a challenge. It is a challenge to men of good will in every part of the country, to transform the commands of our law into the customs of our land. It is a challenge to all of us, to go to work in our States and communities, in our homes, and in the depths of our hearts to eliminate the final strongholds of intolerance and hatred. It is a challenge to reach beyond the content of the bill to conquer the barriers of poor education, poverty, and squalid housing which are an inheritance of past injustice and an impediment to future advance.
“Programs to improve the life of all underprivileged Americans will go far to liberate those who have suffered under the heavy weight of racial discrimination.
“I do not underestimate the depth of the passions involved in the struggle for racial equality. But I also know that throughout this country, in every section of this land, there is a large reservoir of good will and compassion, of decency and fair play which seeks a vision of justice without violence in the streets. If these forces do not desert the field, if they can be brought to the battle, then the years of trial will be a prelude to the final triumph of a land ‘with liberty and justice for all.’”
On this day in 1968, President Johnson signed the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968, providing assistance to the states to help upgrade local and state law enforcement methods.
On this day in 1940, Lyndon Johnson was appointed Lieutenant Commander in the U.S. Naval Reserve (USNR).
On this day in 1965, President Johnson had a telephone conversation with Defense Secretary Robert McNamara.
President Johnson expressed doubts about the current Vietnam policy. The men discussed Jacob Javits’ call for new congressional debate on increased U.S. troop commitment, negative communist response to a United Kingdom peace initiative, and the upcoming visit of British Primer Minister Harold Wilson.
On this day in 1964, President Johnson had a telephone conversation with Congressman Charles Halleck.
President Johnson pressed for passage of the Poverty Bill and Halleck asked for a recess for the Republican Convention.
On this day in 1964, the White House hosted the American Shakespeare Festival Theatre and Academy celebrating the 400th anniversary of the birth of Shakespeare.
On this day in 1963, Vice-President Johnson attended the wedding of Congressman Wilbur Mills’ daughter.
On this day in 1966, President Johnson Signed the Bail Reform Act of 1966.
“Because of the bail system, the scales of justice have been weighted for almost two centuries not with fact, nor law, nor mercy. They have been weighted with money.
“But now, because of the Bail Reform Act of 1966, which an understanding and just Congress has enacted and which I will shortly sign, we can begin to insure that defendants are considered as individuals—and not as dollar signs.”
On this day in 1964, President Johnson met with Prime Minister Ismet Inonu of Turkey.
On this day in 1967, the first day of the Glassboro Summit Conference in Glassboro New Jersey, President Johnson met with Aleskei Kosygin, Chairman of the Council of Ministers, Soviet Union. The two world leaders discussed problems in the Middle East, disarmament and nuclear arms control, and Vietnam among other issues.
On this day in 1967, LBJ left the Glassboro Conference to give gold cups to his grandson.
Just after midnight, President Johnson boarded Air Force One to fly to Texas after appearing at a President’s Club Dinner in Los Angeles, California, on June 23rd. Earlier on June 23rd, Johnson had met with Chairman Aleksei Kosygin of the Soviet Union in Glassboro, New Jersey.
Johnson returned to Texas to visit his first grandchild, Patrick Lyndon Nugent, in Austin, Texas. At Seton Hospital, Johnson presented his daughter, Luci Johnson Nugent, with six small gold cups which Premier Kosygin had given to the President for the baby.
The Johnsons spent the night at the LBJ Ranch, and the following day, the President returned to Glassboro, New Jersey, for more talks with Chairman Kosygin.
On this day in 1967, President Johnson returned to Glassboro, New Jersey, for the conclusion of the Glassboro Summit Conference with Soviet Chairman Aleksei Kosygin. In the evening, President Johnson flew to Washington, D.C., and addressed the American people on live television.
“You will not be surprised to know that these two meetings have not solved all of our problems. On some we have made progress—great progress—in reducing misunderstanding, I think, and in reaffirming our common commitment to seek agreement.
“I think we made that kind of progress, for example, on the question of arms limitation. We have agreed this afternoon that Secretary of State Rusk and Mr. Gromyko will pursue this subject further in New York in the days ahead.
“I must report that no agreement is readily in sight on the Middle Eastern crisis, and that our well known differences over Vietnam continue. Yet even on these issues I was very glad to hear the Chairman’s views face-to-face and to have a chance to tell him directly and in detail just what our purposes and our policies are and are not in these particular areas. The Chairman, I believe, made a similar effort with me.
“When nations have deeply different positions, as we do on these issues, they do not come to agreement merely by improving their understanding of each other’s views. But such improvement helps.
“Sometimes in such discussions you can find elements—beginnings—hopeful fractions of common ground—even within a general disagreement. It was so in the Middle East two weeks ago when we agreed on the need for a prompt cease-fire, and it is so today in respect to such simple propositions as that every state has a right to live, that there should be an end to the war in the Middle East, and that in the right circumstances there should be withdrawal of troops.
“This is a long way from agreement, but it is a long way, also, from total difference.
“On Vietnam, the area of agreement is smaller. It is defined by the fact that the dangers and the difficulties of any one area must never be allowed to become a cause of wider conflict. Yet, even in Vietnam I was able to make it very clear, with no third party between us, that we will match and we will outmatch every step to peace that others may be ready to take.
“As I warned on Friday, and as I just must warn again on this Sunday afternoon, meetings like these do not themselves make peace in the world. We must all remember that there have been many meetings before, and they have not ended all of our troubles or all of our dangers.
“But I can also repeat on this Sunday afternoon another thing that I said on last Friday: that it does help a lot to sit down and look at a man right in the eye and try to reason with him—particularly if he is trying to reason with you.
“We may have differences and difficulties ahead, but I think they will be lessened and not increased by our new knowledge of each other.
“Chairman Kosygin and I have agreed that the leaders of our two countries will keep in touch in the future through our able Secretaries and Ambassadors and also keep in touch directly.
“I said on Friday that the world is very small and very dangerous. Tonight, I believe that it is fair to say that these days at Hollybush have made it a little smaller still but also a little less dangerous.”
On this day in 1964, the President made Remarks on the Proposed Redwoods National Park in Northern California.
“Many of the standing redwood forests are in jeopardy from flooding and fire and plans for highway construction. More than 500 redwoods were lost in 1 year.
“Last year the National Geographic Society discovered in a secluded grove of coast redwoods the world’s three tallest trees—the tallest standing 367 feet. Here is a picture of it back here.
“Now a preliminary report from the National Park Service and the National Geographic Society indicates there remains a last-chance opportunity for the United States. This Nation can protect these redwoods by creating a great and unique national park in one area of Northern California. I have directed Secretary Udall to prepare a plan for a redwoods national park and to have it ready for presentation to the Congress next January.
“I have expressed my concern and determination to save our countrysides. I know of no better place to begin than in this work of saving the majestic redwood forests of the American West.
“I would especially like to commend the National Geographic Society and the Sierra Club, the Save the Redwoods League, and other such fine organizations for the unselfish efforts they have made in this work. Secretary Udall will direct the Park Service to proceed with their study and will report back to the President at the beginning of the year. And, assuming that report is a favorable one, we will give serious consideration to making the appropriation recommendations to Congress in the next session.”
On this day in 1967, President Johnson met with Prime Minister Ion Gheorghe Maurer of Romania.
On this day in 1965, President Johnson wrote a memorandum directing full use by Federal agencies of the ZIP Code System.
A complete transition to the ZIP Code system will not be accomplished without substantial effort by both the Post Office Department and the general public. The full use of ZIP coding by the Government itself is essential to the proper development of the system.
I expect, therefore, that the agencies of the Government will take the lead in adopting the ZIP Code system, including the presorting of quantity mailings. The operations of Federal agencies should provide an example to private mailers who are expected to conform to the new system.
On this day in 1966, the White House celebrated the National Youth Conference on Natural Beauty and Conservation.
On this day in 1966, President Johnson met with civil rights leader Whitney Young in the Oval Office of the White House.
On this day in 1941, W. Lee “Pappy” O’Daniel narrowly defeated Johnson in a special election for the U.S. Senate.
On this day in 1966, President Johnson had a telephone conversation with Defense Secretary Robert McNamara.
McNamara asked for authority to bomb Pol targets in Hanoi, Haiphong. The President expressed concern about the timing of the mission, the USSR’s response if a Soviet tanker was hit, the effects of the bombing on the military effort, the morale of U.S. and enemy troops, and the military effort in South Vietnam.
On this day in 1966, President Johnson signed Executive Order 11287: Award and Presentation of the National Medal of Science.
On this day in 1965, President Johnson met with Prime Minister Keith Holyoake of New Zealand.
On this day in 1967, President Johnson met with King Hussein bin Talal of Jordan.