Brownwood Bulletin from Brownwood, Texas on July 13, 1969 · Page 24
Get access to this page with a Free Trial

Brownwood Bulletin from Brownwood, Texas · Page 24

Brownwood, Texas
Issue Date:
Sunday, July 13, 1969
Page 24
Start Free Trial

8§ BftdWNWfi6& BULUf IN Sunday, July 13, LBJ Savoring His Privacy fjy GAftftt Assffetoled Pfess Writer STONEWALL, Tex. fAPl if you're i« the right place at the fight time in this Central Texas village, you'll see a tall, smiling, sunburned man in sports shirt and slacks stride out of the Stonewall Cafe carrying a supply of take-home barbecued beef. You'll be looking at Lyndon B. Johnson, former president of ihe United States, doing one of the domestic chores he enjoys as a private citizen in retirement. Since leaving office Jan. 20. Johnson has been living quietly on his LBJ ranch, the large spread 65 miles west of Austin that served for five years as the vacation White House, Is he hiding? Is he happy? These are the two questions everyone seems to ask about him. LYNDON JOHNSON . , . likes the "hurl" President Nixon said at hisj news conference June 19 that- His neighbors in this rugged Johnson . » regu]arly briefe{r > Jill l*f*i t*i ttttt rif* *tr\t ttnt-tcvi/vs-i** . ( *•* " by top level security and eco- i nomic advisors. Nixon said these briefings "have provided an occasion for him to give his ideas to us. He has been vervl Hill Country do not consider him a recluse although he has let them know he wants his new privacy respected. Johnson, trim and relaxed, shows up at practically every hc , fu] - n fe of advice and , ocal festival or celebration of- j t £ ink f]e wil] be more he]pfuj ten bringing along a celebny jn (he Mure ,, | visiting at the rambling while N , sald he has talked • stone and frame LBJ Ranch v house. He shakes hands freely every Sunday at one of the area churches. He regularly checks the sale of LBJ books at local souvenir shops, adding his autograph to any unsigned volumes. He checks activities sometimes several times a day at nearby LBJ State Park, the LBJ birthplace and the LBJ boyhood home. "He's doing just what he said , he was going to do," says I George Christian, Johnson's, sonally with Johnson However. Johnson turned; down an invitation to appear at the big Democratic party fundraising dinner in New York, sending a brief telegram of greetings instead. During the recqnt session of the Texas Legislature he turned down repeated invitations to address a joint meeting. There has been speculation; Johnson might take a hand in • state politics, particularly in the 1970 campaign when Sen, Ralph ... i Yarborough, D-Tex., is expected press secretary who is now an ! to sefik r |^ ection / Austin public relations man. "He's happy as he can be. He's reading and writing and spending most of his time at the ranch . . . there's no personality change, no sour apples." "Seems to me like he is as Rep. George Bush, R-Tex.,; who lost to Yarborough in 1964, j claims Johnson was really the one who defeated him. Bush; said he visited Johnson at the' ranee earlier this year to tellj , , , „ T . , the former president he may ; Sn n*b b o e ; X s "£ 'r» «•— -"*>««* <»*|». known Johnson since boyhood. "He still mixes and mingles with the congregation after church like he did while President." Deike operates the Hye general store and post office a few miles from LBJ Ranch. A state historical landmark plaque on the store's doorway says that Johnson, "at age four . . . mailed a letter here— a postal customer for the first time in his life." but did not expect any help! from Johnson this time. • A Johnson aide confirmed Bush's visit but said Johnson would support the Democratic Senate candidate in 1970 "as he has always done." Johnson has made no secret \ in the past that he was noti pleased that Texans elected a i Republican, Sen. John Twoer,! to replace him in the Senate, j Some friends think the possi-1 biblity of two GOP senators \ Deike admits the sale of LBJ I 5^ St.fiSlLmJ!? "" souvenirs has dropped since last «$ * P««S «JJS« January "Dirt not as much as The former president has made only two scheduled public ! we thought it would." app ea ra nces since returning to | "Im having a ball, Mrs. jexas-to attend the funeral of! Johnson told a friend at an Austin social gathering. "There are no big responsibilities and no pressing needs." former President D wight Eisenhower and to Rochester, Minn., to become a director of the Mayo Clinic. There have been However, as Johnson ends his informal unannounced LBJ vis- sixth month of voluntary retire- its to the Bahamas, Florida and ment on July 20, he obviously is very sensitive on two points- second hand reports that he various Texas cities. "The former president feels health. "Any reports of his being in bad health are totally unfounded," said Tom Johnson, the former president's administrative aide, after a series of rumors recently of a Johnson illness, A disclaimer came quickly also after Johnson showed up at an Austin social gathering with one hand bandaged and telling guests a doctor had removed several small skin growths. Aides quickly explained the growths—" keratosis, an overgrowth of horny tissue"—were making a public appearance, 1 an aide explained. Johnson's neighbors in the Stonewall, Johnson City and Frederjcksburg areas help guard the former President's privacy, willingly and otherwise. "He wants his privacy and if you don't respect it you don't remain his friend," said one old timer. "What if Johnson drove by and saw you talking to me? Does he know you are a reporter?" said another. "He told me not to tell anybody anything," Thn£ laT formal P^ss!^™!''. >"' asked h ' r " ame %££& ;&?£• J5 V3 fe of 15,000 acres or more in ^^ JJI^e » said wo2er neigK ""• if he would miss presi- *><*• " H f * toe J?*'* man "*'***** *.•»»**. jr~^-"- - ...i* — n **.*l ytn ,ir»anfia/i niti onrt 1C ne \vanveQ oui anu is J want to miss IWt hurts good." "Let me a)one. I'm just a private citizen now," he told a photographer the next day. Since then he has refused to grant interviews or even answer written questions. Queries to J/BJ ranch or his Austin of- usually get a quick "noj president keeps yp with national and. interna- tigflil happenings but there has fceen, no indication so far he plans to take ao acjtve part in ej|jaer state or national politics, Jeasi to the extent he has in ]p .. OQPTOB5 .-, , ELUS & ELLIS The task of retelling the story of the Johnson administration occupies much of the former president's time. There is a1970 deadline for the first part of an expected three<vQlWie TOen> oirs. Working with Johnson are his administrative aide, Tom Johnson; two former White House speech writers, Robert Carrier CARRIER RQQM AIR CONDITIONER lain I ?»mct 120 f, *t Hr. financing. Distributing £9. ty fifid Marry Middletott; And Walt M. Rostow, former White House foreign advisor. In addition, Rostow, now a professor at the University of Texas, is working on two books of his own on U.S. foreign policy and world economy. f "He likes to dictate when he thinks of something he wants to I make part of history." said a ! Johnson spokesman, "and this can happen at almost any time or place." The dictated notes are put together by one or more aides with background material and : a rough draft sent back lo Johnson. "This is where he does a lot of his writing, with a pencil up and down the margins, between i the lines and everywhere. He I may pencil up drafts like this j several times before he is final-' ly satisfied." To back up Johnson's memories and personal notes, his files contain about 22 million pages of i documents accumulated dur -, ing his 38 years of political life i and about 250,000 photographic' negatives. Most of this material! now is stored in the Federal; Building at Austin, where his; writers have a suite of offices. Later it will be stored in the LBJ Library and presidential; archives under construction at j the University of Texas. Before leaving Washington' there were announcements that Johnson planned to lecture at Rice University in Houston and at the LBJ School of Public Af- i fairs which will be a part of a I University of Texas complex along with LBJ Library, However, Johnson later exercised j an option on the Rice lectures' and postponed them until this i fall at the earliest. j University of Texas officials; say their Johnson lecture series j likely will not begin until the j LBJ Library and the LBJ School ; of Public Affairs is dedicated in the fall of 1970. : The completed LBJ Library will contain a special suite of i offices for Johnson including a ] replica of the oval room in the i White House where he worked' for five years as president. j Johnson now has the choice' of a large office in the ranch house, another in the Johnson City bank shared with his long time friend and business asso- j ciate, A. W. Moursund, and the j teak-paneled, gold-carpeted suite in the Federal Building furnished by the U.S. government. The Johnsons show no indications of living any other place j than the ranch on the Pederna- i les but they also own several choice residential lots in Austin. There also is a spacious apartment atop the Austin building that houses Mrs. Johnson's radio and television properties and there is a cottage on Lake LBJ about 30 miles north of Johnson City. A downtown Austin hotel keeps a suite available for the fdfmet pfSsldeni My time he wants to droifj by. And there is seldotn a trip to Austin that does not include a visit to the home of Mr. and Mrs. Pat Nugnet to see Mrs. Nugent—their daughter, Luci—and grandson, Lyn. Nugent is aft executive at Mrs. Johnson's ' KTBC-TV. ! The other daughter, Lynda, and granddaughter* Lucinda. live in Alexandria, Va.. where Marine Maj. Charles Robb is assigned to the Pentagon. The Johnsons elatedly wel: corned back both of their sons- in-law after completion of combat tours in Vietnam. A widely published photograph showed Nugent carrying his young son and his arm around Luci. while the former president carried Nugent's flight bag. "H's the least 1 could do after what he's done," Johnson said. A prominent East Coast politician who spent a day at the ranch recently said Johnson; avoided all discussion of public; affairs. Instead, the former president entertained guests by showing i them around the ranch and; keeping conversation centered on the Johnson children and grandchildren, the sons-in-law ; and construction progress on; the LBJ Library. There are other indications of j the "home folks" trend at LBJ \ Ranch the past six months. When Army Chief of Staff Gen. William Westmoreland spent a night he was taken lo the Stone-; wall Peach Festival for entertainment. Mrs. Vincent Aston and Mr. and Mrs. Laurance Rockefeller, all prominent New Yorkers, were weekend house guests and accompanied the Johnsons to Fredericksburg for dedication of the "Lady Bird Johnson Municipal Park." The Johnson City weekly newspaper dutifully reported that members of the Stonewall Community Beautification Committee held a meeting at LBJ Ranch to augment Mrs. Johnson's beautification plans for Stonewall, Hye and Albert. The former First Lady served homemade cookies and punch. The former president gave each guest an autographed copy of one of his biographies and a ball point pen with the presidential seal. Several Johnson acquaintances have recalled a story j that he told frequently in earlier political campaigns and home town gatherings to show the feelings of the Johnsons for the Hill Country area. The former president's father, Sam Johnson, was hospitalized in Austin but wanted to go home to Johnson City. According to the story, the father told the son: "Get me my pants, son. I want to go home where the people know when you're sick and care when you die." FUNNY BUSINESS By Roger Boffen ALL VOO KIDS, BEHAVE A^D t '2 2 s £ i i I 6 TO CCMS /W AMP CAPTAW (Wre growing every day) Serving thi greater §<?ythwe$t with bjrffftd'flsust investment services, * Abilene * Aman'Ho • Breckenrldge • Brownwood i El Porado,Ark. * F <?rt Worth»Houstpn»Maanplin, Ark,» Monroe, La. * Pampa * §en Angel<j* §an Antonio t Tempos« Tgli| * Tylss.Qkl*, * MORE AWARD WINNING PHOTOGRAPHY by WRIGHT'S "BRADY"—Natural color portrait of Brady Johnson, son of Mr. and Mrs. Jerry Johnson, San Saba, photographed by Mickey Wright. "WESTERN QUEEN"—Natural color portrait of Dora Tilton, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Jock Tilton, photographed by Mickey Wright. "MISS PRISS"—Natural color portrait of Kelly Wright, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Mickey Wright, photographed by Judy Wright. "GLORIOUS MOMENT"—Natural color portrait of Gail Gardner, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. M. L. Gardner, photographed by Mickey Wright "LITTLE MISS"—Natural color portrait of Kelly Gilger, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. David Gilger, San Saba, photographed by Mickey Wright, "DUB"—Natural color portrait of Dub Johnson, son of Mr. and Mrs. Jerry Johnson, San Saba. Photographed by Mickey Wright, The above natural color portraits which were printed and processed in the color laboratories of Wright's- Photography,, were awarded the GoldStar Honor of Exhibition at ihe 55th annual meeting of the Professional Phgtographers Association in Austin, Texas As & result of these awards, both Mickey and Judy . Wright heve earned the distinction of RPQJSTERJ:!} Professional Photographers of Texas, wight's BANKAhlEHiCAHD 1 If DO 141*957$ welcome 1

What members have found on this page

Get access to

  • The largest online newspaper archive
  • 11,100+ newspapers from the 1700s–2000s
  • Millions of additional pages added every month

Try it free