Mr. and Mrs. Lyndon Baines Johnson

images This seems to be history week on since I feel the need to weigh in after seeing the film Jackie, that annoyed me on many levels,  starting with Natalie Portman’s over the top performance, but what I’d like to add light to, are the Johnsons.

The world, if nothing else, knows he succeeded JFK after the assassination.  They might even know how hated he was by the Kennedys and the Irish Mafia, as their loyal cronies were aptly called.

After JFK asked him to be vice-president, Bobby Kennedy, who may have loathed him the most, tried very hard to backpedal Jack’s offer, but Johnson held firm.

Here are some facts I’ll bet few people know…

LBJ refused to leave Dallas without Jackie when the secret service wanted him to.  She wouldn’t leave without her husband’s body the Dallas coroner wouldn’t release. There was a law stating, anyone who died there had to have an autopsy before it was let go.

Still, Lyndon and Lady Bird, perhaps not a smart move safety wise, stayed, until strings were pulled, before they all returned to Washington.

It’s been written, he wanted Jackie by his side to make him look more presidential.

How about, he had two daughters of his own, and the man he was, was not about to leave a girl of 34, who just watched her husband die, all alone.

One of the first things he did, when he got back home, was write letters to John and Caroline, telling them what a special father they had.

He also told Jackie, to take all the time she needed to move.

He then said, the school Jackie had started in the White House for Caroline and her little peers, could continue till the year was up, so not to disturb their routine anymore than necessary.

These things are interesting to me, and should have all been in the film.

Why weren’t they?

Because goodness doesn’t sell tickets?

As for accuracy, who cares.

When Jackie died, 31 years later, Lady Bird, her husband long gone, attended her funeral.  There she was, old yet sturdy, saying good bye to an old friend.

All politicians are ruthless, just look who’s about to take the helm, and LBJ was no exception…

but in November, 1963, he was a caring, noble, just man…to a very shaken, sad, young widow, who I’m certain, never forgot it.







About Susannah Bianchi

I'm just a girl who likes to write slightly on slant. I've had a career in fashion, dabbled in film and to be honest, I don't like talking about myself. Now my posts are another matter so I will let them speak for themselves. My eBooks, A New York Diary, Model Behavior: Friends For Life and Notes From A Working Cat can be found on Thanks.
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37 Responses to Mr. and Mrs. Lyndon Baines Johnson

  1. Hal says:

    So interesting! Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Coyote from Orion says:

    Good on you for recognizing these important yet boring human qualities that keep societies together. Any family that has survived tragedy is nodding in agreement. When push comes to shove a lot of trivialities disappear. Those of us who have faced death respect it and respect others including their differences as a result. Blessed be

    Liked by 1 person

  3. micklively says:

    It’s an interesting subject. Looking back on history, both the saints and the despots are human. I am sure one could find tales of compassion, respect and kindness about even the most reviled of monsters. I am told Hitler was kind to animals for instance (I have no idea if this is true!). None of this is to suggest LBJ was a monster: I know very little about him. I am just wondering what prompts apparently normal and nice people to commit the heinous crimes we witness. Are our political systems inherently inclined towards evil?

    Liked by 1 person

    • All I knew about Hitler, who I have a hard time reading about, is he had a German Shepherd. Cruelty to that degree, mystifies me.

      Liked by 1 person

      • micklively says:

        Me too. So how can a nice guy drop napalm on Vietnamese villages? It makes no sense. I think LBJ was part of the process. So did he just get railroaded by the system or could he compartmentalise his mind in some way?

        Liked by 1 person

      • Many facets, make up a person. Like I said, politicians are ruthless, and imagine being in that position? You have the Joint Chiefs of Staff who are mostly warmongers urging you to drop that napalm. Have you ever read 13 Days about the Cuban Missile Crisis? It’s a short read Bobby Kennedy wrote, and you see how, if you don’t have it in you to hold your ground, forget it. Johnson was bigger than life. Robert Caro wrote beautifully of him warts and all. All I know is, he acted decently during a time many people though of him as the enemy taking JFK’s place. Like he had a choice.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. skinnyuz2b says:

    Susannah, because Jackie was so poised, we often forget how young she was. I nave only read/heard the negatives about LBJ. Thanks for the enlightenment.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. George says:

    You’re right about LBJ’s actions after the assassination and it’s important that people who have not read about him understand that aspect of his life. He was a sometimes rough around the edges, old school southern politician whose image didn’t fit well with the Kennedy’s “polish.” But without Johnson and Hoffa, history would be very different.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. He wasn’t all bad. He followed through with civil rights, voting rights, Social Security, Medicare/Medicaid, etc. The Vietnam war tanked him. I expect that his wife, who was brought up as a Southern lady, counseled him on proper manners. How could you not have empathy for a young widow with two very young children. We also can’t forget that she just lost a baby too.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Susannah, I love what you said to skinny and I feel the same way. I have found many a Texan who exhibit manners, almost unfailingly, and although I am not a big fan of LBJ, I felt he was very classy during those horrible days following the assassination. He was kind, he was considerate, and offered the country a figure we could all be proud of in a time when it was so badly needed. In my opinion, it was his finest hour.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I don’t know that much about LBJ, but from what I’ve seen he was a pretty good guy. I’m glad you shared this about him though, since I hadn’t known that.


  9. Gail says:

    That’s interesting. I recall the scene in “Jackie” when Bobby told him to sit down, and the loathing between them was evident.

    Liked by 1 person

    • RFK is a hero of mine, but he had a mean streak, that quelled quite a bit after his brother died. But he hated Lyndon Johnson. Hated him, so when he stepped up to take his brother’s place, that had to be so tough for him.


  10. Thank you History Grasshopper, thank you very much!
    My mother was telling me that LBJ was a beautiful writer. You could disagree with his policy, but you could never deny the sentiment in his writing.

    Liked by 1 person

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