This week, as I continued my research, I went to the Olin Library where I checked out three books; The Day Kennedy Was Shot by Jim Bishop, A Very Human President by Jack Valenti, and JFK And LBJ by Tom Wicker. Also, I have looked at articles in The Owosso Argus Press from November 23, 1963 and The Eugene Register Guard from November 23, 1963 which both display the picture of Lyndon B. Johnson being sworn into office.
By looking at these newspapers one can begin to imagine what it must have been like to open one’s front door on the morning following the assassination and see such a powerful picture and headline streaming the front of one’s newspaper. These newspapers chronicle the circumstances around the president’s death. The Owosso Argus Press also touches on the uncertainty of what will happen with the U.S. foreign policy now that Johnson is at the reigns.
Although the book, A Very Human President, begins its story of Lyndon B. Johnson the hours following his being sworn into office, I believe it is a very important source. This is so because the book points to what all must have been going through Lyndon B. Johnson’s head as he was sworn in, and describes just what all Johnson was in store for. Since it was written by a close friend of Johnson’s, who was also on the staff at the White House it is written in a way that clearly brings the reader into the personal life of LBJ and then into the intensity surrounding what had occurred which is all vital to understanding the impact of the picture.
Although I have not dived much into the other two books, I can already tell that they will prove to be quite useful. The Day Kennedy Was Shot is a minute by minute account of the day Kennedy was assassinated, and JFK And LBJ remarkably describes how the U.S. was feeling after Kennedy’s death. Wicker wrote, “People were unbelieving, afraid. Many were bitter. All were desperately unsure of what would happen next…And no one yet could look to Lyndon Johnson; hardly anyone thought of him”(159).
In order to further my research in the coming weeks I will be ordering from Amazon That Day In Dallas by Richard B. Trask and “The Memories-JFK, 1961-1963” by Cecil Stoughton, Chester V. Clifton and Hugh Sidey. I also plan on doing some research on Judge Sarah Hughes who swore Lyndon B. Johnson into office.
Valenti, Jack. A Very Human President. New York City, NY: W.W. Norton and Company, Inc., 1975. Print.
Bishop, Jim. The Day Kennedy Was Shot. New York City, NY: Funk and Wagnalls, 1968. Print.
Wicker, Tom. JFK And LBJ. New York City, NY: William Morrow and Company, Inc., 1968. Print.