Johnson, Lyndon B. (United States of America)

Reference work entry


As vice president to John F Kennedy, Lyndon Baines Johnson became the 36th president of the United States after Kennedy’s assassination on 22 Nov. 1963. He was elected for a full term in office in 1964 and is credited with enacting civil rights legislation initiated by the Kennedy administration. Johnson is also remembered for escalating the war in Vietnam. He did not seek re-election in 1968.

Early Life

Born near Stonewall, Texas on 30 Aug. 1908, Johnson’s parents were farmers. He was educated at Johnson City High School in 1924 and Southwest Texas State Teachers’ College, graduating in 1930.

Campus politics led to him campaigning for Democratic congressman Richard M. Kleberg who appointed Johnson his secretary, a post he held for 4 years. In 1934 Johnson married Claudia Alta Taylor, with whom he would have two daughters.

In 1935 Johnson was made director of Texas’ National Youth Administration. Two years later a congressional district in Texas became vacant and,...

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