Lyndon B. Johnson

Lyndon B. Johnson was the 36th President of the United States, serving from 1963 to 1969. He was a Democrat from Texas and is remembered for his leadership during the civil rights movement, his “Great Society” programs, and his escalation of the Vietnam War. Johnson was a complex and controversial figure, and his legacy is still debated today.

Johnson was born in Stonewall, Texas in 1908. He was the oldest of five children and grew up in a rural area. His father was a farmer and his mother was a schoolteacher. Johnson was an ambitious student and graduated from Johnson City High School in 1924. He then attended Southwest Texas State Teachers College, where he was an active member of the debate team. After graduating in 1930, Johnson taught public speaking and debate at Sam Houston High School in Houston.

In 1934, Johnson ran for the U.S. House of Representatives and won. He was re-elected five times and served in the House until 1949. During his time in the House, Johnson was a strong supporter of President Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal programs. He also served as the House Majority Leader from 1951 to 1953.

In 1948, Johnson was elected to the U.S. Senate. He was re-elected in 1954 and served until 1961. During his time in the Senate, Johnson was a powerful figure and was known as the “Master of the Senate.” He was a strong supporter of civil rights and was instrumental in passing the Civil Rights Act of 1957.

In 1960, Johnson was chosen as John F. Kennedy's running mate for the presidential election. Kennedy and Johnson won the election and Johnson became the Vice President of the United States. On November 22, 1963, Kennedy was assassinated and Johnson was sworn in as President.

As President, Johnson was a strong advocate for civil rights. He signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which outlawed discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. He also signed the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which prohibited racial discrimination in voting. Johnson also implemented his “Great Society” programs, which aimed to reduce poverty and improve education, health care, and the environment.

Johnson also escalated the Vietnam War. He increased the number of U.S. troops in Vietnam from 16,000 to over 500,000. The war was highly unpopular and Johnson's approval ratings plummeted. In 1968, Johnson announced that he would not seek re-election.

After leaving office, Johnson retired to his ranch in Texas. He died in 1973 at the age of 64.

Lyndon B. Johnson was a complex and controversial figure. He was a strong advocate for civil rights and implemented his “Great Society” programs. However, he also escalated the Vietnam War, which was highly unpopular. Johnson's legacy is still debated today, but he is remembered as a leader who was committed to improving the lives of all Americans.