Skip to main content

tv   Reel America The President - January 1969  CSPAN  January 11, 2021 11:03pm-12:00am EST

11:03 pm
up next and real america. the president january 1969. this is the final film in a monthly series produced by the people photographing unit to document the activities of lyndon bree johnson between 1964 and 1969. in his program, lbj reflects of his time in office with speeches, ceremonies in events. the apollo eight astronauts awards several medals of honor, holds his final cabinet meeting, delivers his state of the union address and witnesses the inauguration of richard nixon. the film also covers the first lady, including a speech for
11:04 pm
conservation in beautification efforts. >> ♪ ♪ >> a lot of people have been asking is what we are going to do with our spare time. i'll tell you what i'm going to do. i'm going to the ranch monday afternoon i'm gonna sit on that front porch and rocking chair for about ten minutes.
11:05 pm
(laughter) >> and then i'm going to read a little and ride a little, but that i'm gonna go and put on my hat and find out wolf which would mean (laughter) i someone told me the other day that the president had a few complaints about the treatment that you've received during this administration. this is a fine time to be telling me now, why don't you mention it sooner? (laughter) >> i've got some complaints of my own. maybe i should have mentioned them sooner to you. getting misquoted for instance is one thing i've got to complain about. remember that -- i never said it was ugly.
11:06 pm
actually, i thought it was a pretty good likeness. except for one little detail they left off the halo. (laughter) ♪ ♪ >> in january of 1969, president lyndon bains johnson began his final 20 days as president of the united states. ♪ ♪ da8if
11:07 pm
chair sits in the chair that has been occupied by no less than 40 men. we'll have a long history of this great republic. who was selected by the will and the votes of a majority of the citizens of this republic. he must execute the philosophy and the policies of the people
11:08 pm
of this nation, regardless of his own personal feelings from time to time. he is the execute or of the will of the people of this nation, and he carries upon his shoulders day and night a burden that always seems at least to him, too much to carry but only for him to carry. >> the transfer of presidential power is it passed a very difficult procedure. historian henry grant has referred to it as the stirring right of political renewal. in a forward to a book on chief executives which was published in 1966, president johnson
11:09 pm
wrote, each of our presidents owes something to his predecessors. they share much with one another yet each is different in himself. together, they reflect between you the great diversity that is the well spring of america's enduring vitality. ♪ ♪ during the early days of the month, president johnson had a continuing dialog with his fiscal advisers on the progress of the budget report. how is the official balance sheet of the nation's business, it held the key to the content and the final delivery dates of the economic report and the state of the union message. >> the story of america on the road ahead was going to be told in terms of how we master the
11:10 pm
threat of inflation while preserving prosperity. how we maintain the strength of the dollar is the challenge and has been challenged and is being challenged throughout the world. how we ensure our environment is pleasing, and whether we can really carry out our commitment to bring our bypassed citizens into the full life of the nation. >> to help sustain the momentum of these commitments and to sustain a booming economy, president johnson decided to ask congress for a four year extension of the 10% sir tax, yielded to expire the fall coming june. amidst all the press last minute activity, ceremonies, in private farewells, mrs. johnston took time to personally supervised the packing and moving of many of
11:11 pm
her family's personal belongings from the white house living quarters. among the items remaining behind were official portraits of the president and the first lady. in the executive office building across the street, the files of the johnson years in the capital city numbering over 31 million items, from the house, the senate and the presidential years were packed and ready for shipment to the lyndon johnson library at the university of texas. ♪ ♪
11:12 pm
,,. . we want peace so much we are working at it diligently and earnestly but it is an elusive thing and we have been unable to find the formula that would give us peace with honor in that area of the world and stop the killing. although we will continue to search till the very last moment when we leave this office. i think that's the biggest disappointment we had.
11:13 pm
>> the president of the united states of america. authorized by act of congress has awarded the distinguished service medal, first oakley cluster to general earl g wheeler, united states army, for exceptionally meritorious zervos and the duty of great responsibility. general freezers deep professional competence. >> this country senior military spokesman during the war in vietnam was general earl g wheeler, who is now entering an unprecedented fifth year of the german joint chiefs of staff. >> presidents high regard for him has been forced in the fires a crisis and hardened in the day today exercise of awesome responsibility. his vision has been clear and his counsel has been wise.
11:14 pm
he has served his nation with a soldiers skill and a patriots devotion. the mark of that service is written large on the shield of america's defense, the might of its power, the effectiveness of its military forces and the efficiency of their management. and for us all, the days of the future are brighter with the hope of peace, more confident of the preservation of freedom, safer with the assurance of our security because earl wheeler was here when his country needed him. -- general, today on behalf of the grateful people of america, i salute you.
11:15 pm
[applause] as you near the end of five years in two months in office, president johnson could look back on other times two other men, many other good friends and reflect with deep satisfaction on his administration's many legislative accomplishments. in domestic affairs, he had presided over a new age of progress to visit. much of the old agenda had reached fulfillment, medicare has become a accepted part of american life. the vote booth and the doors the public service had been open to all americans, regardless of their color. in a field where race, religion and ideology had been formidable obstacles to progress, the education act of 1965 at crack the
11:16 pm
constitutional and political impasse over church school relationships. and brought federal money directly to the slum areas, where it was needed the most. head start, the model cities program consumer protection, increased investment in man power training, and the housing act of 1968 were a few of the many accomplishments of his years in the presidency. as a conservationist, president johnson's record reflected is deep concern over the problems of a livable environment and the protection of our natural resources. our concern shared most notably by another member of the white house family. [applause] >> the thank you. thank you very much.
11:17 pm
welcome everybody. i'm so happy to thank you i'm so happy to welcome you here this afternoon. there's an occasion that tells me with warmth and nostalgia, and a great deal of pleasure. as i look back on the parade of people and ideas and at attainments that have been marked here in this room, i am aware of how often there had been occasions heralding strides in conservation. some of the faces sea here today or at the white house conference of natural beauty in may of 1965. so many of that since then it comes to mind, from signing acts from the land and water conservation fund and highway beautification act. to launching the men --
11:18 pm
sea shores and national parks. we are issuing new postage stamps, messages that are sent all over the country. they will bring a reminder and my personal hope, that americans will intensify their commitment to conservation in the time ahead. >> i believe we have just witnessed one of the most creative and one of the most productive areas in the history of the entire american country. collectively they've written a record that i think has never been matched and all of our on hundred 88 years. and i am proud of it. >> on monday january the 6th, president and mrs. johnston journey to the long or an office building on capitol hill
11:19 pm
for a reception given into their honor by the house leadership. here, surrounded by so many of his former colleagues from the house and senate, president johnson paid a warm and nostalgic tribute to all the friendships and a record of legislature achievement. >> they didn't make the didn't want to put a treaty when i wanted to. they did their job. they did it they sought and they did it well. and they did it better than this government than any other government in all the world. this government is a home for so long i love it so deeply. i know how it does rise to the demands of our time and hopefully will continue to. [applause] >> three days later, as a cold biting when swept across the capitol hill, several hundred dignitaries and
11:20 pm
a handful of of officials from the smithsonian institution joined the president and mrs. johnston, to celebrate the giving of a unique and handsome gift to the city of washington. ñ ÷w6kñ-- joseph herschmann, born in latvia and raised in the jewish slums of brooklyn, he had become time he was 29. now 40 years later, he was witnessing the realization of his most persistent dream. the groundbreaking for the vast new museum that would house the 50 million dollar our collection that he had given to the united states. >> his administration was afraid to recognize the importance of art in american life and to legislate in its favor. it is an honor for me, to give my art collection to the people
11:21 pm
of the united states. i think it is a small repayment for what this great nation has done for me and others, who like me arrived here as immigrants. and ladies and gentlemen i want to chat about something else. we americans are a great wonderful generous people. we are one i am glad to be proud of one of the members of this family. i came here as a little boy, brought here by my mother 63 years ago. i am glad i am here. >> today and tomorrow, are memorable days for this capital and for this country. tomorrow, we will greet here in washington three voyagers who can describe for us, sites that
11:22 pm
have never been seen before my humanize. today, we celebrate the enriching power of art in the spirit of creation. we honor a most remarkable man, and a most magnificent gift. each of the events that we commemorate in these two days, the flight of apollo eight and the birth of the herschmann museum, tells us something about this country and its people. we are in love with science, with progress, with change, with adventure, with technology. i reach into space expressing
11:23 pm
that enthusiasm and that determination. we are restless, requesting, deeply moved by art and symbols that are concerned with inner sayings. >> ladies and gentlemen, the president of the united states. >> on december 21st 1968, three american astronauts on the strength of a saturn five rocket, began man's most far-reaching voyage of exploration. his first flight around the moon. three days later, as they swept into the lunar orbit, they look back to see the earth as it really is. a small wet spinning planted, on the edge of an inconsiderable galaxy, floating in eternal silence. >> there is little that hasn't been set are written in praise of these famous men who have come here to the east from this
11:24 pm
morning. we are quite naturally proud that they're all americans. we recognize that mere national pride isn't sufficient. these men represented in the vastness of space, all mankind, all of its races, all of its nationalities, all of its religions, all of its ideologies. for seven days the earth and all who inhabited view a measure of unity through these brave men. , you have been wearing no human being as ever ventured. you have seen firsthand, what no human i ever saw before you we. your flight was an unparalleled achievement of technology. yet behind the sophisticated hardware of space, apollo eight
11:25 pm
was a story of men. there were those first men who dreamed of powered flight into space. there were those men in our government who ten years ago fought to guarantee america's role in space. i'm glad that i was one of them. our space program and this is the most spectacular treatment, have taught us some very invaluable lessons. we have learned that men in nations may make common cause and most amazing and hope prices in mankind. i renew america's commitment and enormous promise. if there is an ultimate truth to be learned in this historic flight, it may be this.
11:26 pm
their view social or scientific or political problems that could not be solved by men if they truly want to solve them together. i am very proud to present you with an asset distinguished service medal. they are very small tokens of our appreciation of what you've done for our country, for the world and for us. >> mister president, i thought that we had experienced every emotion known to man in the 20 hours that we spend in orbit, but i believe this just opted. i know i speak for jim in bill when i say we are three grateful americans, grateful to you personally, we recognize you're interest and contributions to the space program of our country, we are grateful to this wonderful country. they have supported us in every way. although we are symbolic of the
11:27 pm
country's greatness, we certainly feel very inadequate. we are just very grateful. we want to give you two things. we carried with us a space treaty around the moon, and bill andrews would like to present that. >> and mister president, jim has a picture of the ranch i think you'd like to have. [applause] >> it was a ceremony without fanfare. it was done with great care. meticulous mathematical precision. there were no reporters our correspondents there, only a handful of white house staffers who seemed to linger extra long, outside the doorway to the
11:28 pm
office. yet, to those who were present, the transfer of presidential desks was clearly an eloquent symbol of the shifting of presidential power. the moment which was now only a few days away.
11:29 pm
after a weekend stay at camp david, they flew to new york city for a farewell didn't which was given in their honor at the plaza hotel. ♪ ♪ hosted by 18 of the johnson family closest friends, and attended by over 400 prominent gas from both political parties, the evening was truly a moment of gaiety and nostalgia. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
11:30 pm
>> one of the highlights was a present containment by governor nelson rockefeller of a capsule of the johnson presidency as written by 21 distinguished americans. (applause) >> we shared the dreams of the battles of a five-year encounter with destiny. in the years ahead there will be many evaluations of all the things that we did, but what
11:31 pm
really matters is not the ultimate judgment that historians are going to pass on the work that we have done at this period or even this administration, but what matters is whether there has been really been a change for the better in the way human beings live in this country. i'm going to let you in a little secret. i really think there has been. (applause) ♪ ♪ >> on tuesday the 14th, president johnson held his last formal meeting with members of the congressional leadership. and a matter of hours, he was due to deliver his sixth and final state of the union message in the house chamber. it was clearly a sentimental
11:32 pm
journey, but his decision to deliver the message in person and accept the historians in the fraternal journalistic community back to their history books. he decided it had not been invoked since the days of john adams in 1801. >> my distinguished7# colleagues of the congress, i have the high privilege and a distinct honor, not only officially but personally to me, of presenting to you the president of the united states. (applause)rp9/ >> mister speake?
11:33 pm
>> thank you very much. mister speaker, mister president, members of the congress and my fellow americans. for the sixth and the last time, i present to the congress my assessment of the state of the union. i shall speak to you tonight about challenge and opportunity and about the commitments not all of us have made together that will if we carry them out,
11:34 pm
give america our best chance to achieve the kind of the great society that we all want. every president lives, not only with what is but with what has been. and what could be. most of the great events in this presidency are part of elite larger sequence extending back through several years and extending back through several other administrations. urban unrest, poverty, pressures on welfare, education for people, law enforcement and law and order, the continuing
11:35 pm
clashes in the middle east, the conflict in vietnam, the dangers of nuclear war, the great difficulties of dealing with the communist powers. all have this much in common. they and their causes, the causes the gave rise to them, all of these have existed with us for many years. several presidents have already sought to try to deal with them. one or more presidents will try to resolve them or try to contain them in the years that are ahead of us, but if the nation's problems are continuing, so are this great
11:36 pm
nation's assets. our economy, the democratic system, our sense of exploration symbolized most recently by the wonderful flights of the apollo eight by which all americans took great pride. (applause) and the good common sense and sound judgment of the american people and their essential love of justice. (applause) >> the occasion was obviously an emotional one and the message, low-key as it was, focused heavily on one word, commitment. the departure of one administration did not mean an end to the problems it had faced. the efforts to meet them had to go on year after year, if the momentum that had been gained over the years wasn't to be
11:37 pm
lost. the very existence of promises like the anti poverty program, the model cities bill, and the fair housing act of 1968 was a kind of reality in itself. breaking those promises, especially those that had touched the lives of the poor, would be a tragic error. >> but it is not fully completed of course. >> greater revenues and reduced federal spelling at spending a change the budgetary picture greatly since the previous january. in the fiscal year ending on june 30th, the government would declare a 2.4 billion surplus. anticipating a year's extension of the 10% serve tax. the budget for fiscal 1970 would provide a surplus of 3.4 billion. the prospects for peace in vietnam now seemed better than at any other time since the
11:38 pm
north vietnam the means invasion for years before. >> and free nations of asia know what they were not sure of at that time, that america cares about their freedom, and it also cares about america's own vital interests in asia and throughout the pacific. and now my friends in congress, i want to conclude with a few very personal words to you. our rejected and rejected and finally i accepted congressional congressional leaderships invitation to come here to speak this farewell to you in person tonight. i did that for two reasons. one was philosophical, i wanted to give you my judgment as i saw on some of the issues for our nation as i view them before i leave.
11:39 pm
the other was just pure sentimental. most of my life (applause) most all of my life as a public official has been spent here in
11:40 pm
this building. for 38 years, since i worked a lot gallery as a doorkeeper in the house of representatives (applause) i have known these halls and i've known most of the men pretty well who walked them. i know the questions that you face, i know the conflicts that you endure, i know the ideals that you seek to serve. (applause) now it's time to leave. i hope it maybe said 100 years from now that by working together, we helped to make our
11:41 pm
country more just. more just for all of its people as well as to ensure and guarantee the blessings of liberty for all of our posterity. that's what i hope but i believe that at least it will be said that we tried. (applause) (singing) >> on the
11:42 pm
evening after the state of the union message, mister president and mrs. johnston joined the press corps as a paid tribute to dean rusk and his wife. ♪ ♪
11:43 pm
>> on thursday morning just prior to the formal signing of the economic message, and with little more than three days remaining to remain as chief executive, president johnson startled washington with a sudden and dramatic announcement. >> last night and this morning we have had certain decisions that please us, that we have learned that certain basic chris see joe problems in paris have been solved and that new talks on the substance at least of southeast asia can now open. so, this year i think the impartial record will show that we have made steady progress towards the piece that we all
11:44 pm
devoutly pray for. i deeply believe if we can only remain united in the days ahead, and if we can stay together on this path, we will achieve an honorable peace in southeast asia at the earliest date that it is possible to do. >> the breakthrough, which came after ten agonizing waves of diplomatic maneuvering, met the talks were now get underway. it would also mean that one day happily, ceremonies like the one in the east room on the afternoon of the 16th would no longer be necessary. >> for the final time during my presidency, this house is graced with the company of the heroes who have scaled heights known only to a very few men in
11:45 pm
this land. the courage of the bravest in war is a very rare and a very special quality4&(
11:46 pm
in an hour of hard challenge, and each man answered that call with a courage beyond the man. so now the names of jackson and plus, last-minute dickson are added to this roster of the very brave, and the record of their deeds at the very summit of human testing will forever now be part of the history of battle. ♪ ♪ the words above and beyond the call of duty would never sound again in the world that we want to work for. never again would or some of the best men could give. ♪ ♪
11:47 pm
but when that day comes, there will always be a high place of honor for the men who have fought it. ♪ ♪ for all the good and gallant fighting men who took their duty as they found it, and they discharged it always with the courage of jobs.
11:48 pm
(clock ticking0 (clock ticking0 (clock ticking0 presidential inaugural is a moment bounced at the present a future. and it waits for one man. but it is also a moment teaming with the memories of the past. for the man who had been closest to him, and given the administration so much of its character and presents, their final meeting was a moment of tribute and laughter, with a sudden sense of loss and sadness. >> this is the 80th cabinet meeting that i have had as president. presidents cabinet is official finally it has a relationship with it, kind of like his own family.
11:49 pm
they should be the closest counsel he has, and the authorities in their respective fields as well as -- >> for the members of the family, the hours seem suddenly more precious. the moment spent in quiet and familiar rooms, now became memories that will have to last for a lifetime. ♪ ♪ the sound of course, this moment in time was of little significance.
11:50 pm
one day, they'd be told how they spend their final hours here. salute by the presidents own, the united states marine band. ♪ ♪
11:51 pm
in the morning of january 20th, lyndon johnson began the final hours of his presidency. with the arrival of the president elect at 10 am, both men would be caught up in a ceremonial timetable. a timetable that would in effect remove the burdens of office from the shoulders of one man, and pass them on to the other. ♪ ♪
11:52 pm
♪ ♪
11:53 pm
♪ ♪
11:54 pm
12:16 am richard nixon became the 37th president of the united states. ♪ ♪
11:55 pm
most people come into the office list great dreams, and they leave it with many satisfaction since some disappointments. and always some of their dreams that have not come true. i'm no exception.
11:56 pm
what i'm so grateful and so proud, but i have had my chance. and how successful and doing the greatest good for the greatest number, the people themselves and their posterity must ultimately decide. i have dissatisfaction, my family has the satisfaction, that we gave it all we had. and we think we provided some of the answers to the needs of our time. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
11:57 pm
11:58 pm
weeknights this month we're featuring american history tv programs for a preview of what's available every weekend on c-span 3. tuesday night, we look at ronald reagan. universityu6op of central arkans historian markets which are looks packet conservative criticism of president reagan foreign policy towards the soviet union, and explain how its criticism was downplayed in later decades as conservatives sought to reimagine their relationship with the 40th president. last tuesday beginning at 8 pm eastern enjoy american history tv every weekend on c-span 3.
11:59 pm
next on the presidency, historians analyze the secret white house tapes of john kerry, lyndon b. johnson -- and hear their candid assessments. the university of -- miller center hosted this event. >> good afternoon everyone, i'm


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on