Friday, March 29, 2013

All Things LBJ -- Fri., Mar. 29

Today we learned about Lyndon Baines Johnson, the 36th President of the United States and his wife, Claudia Alta Taylor Johnson (aka Lady Bird). We stopped in Johnson City, Texas, at the Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park where we watched movies on both Lyndon B. and Lady Bird Johnson. Excellent movies, but I especially liked the movie on Lady Bird. I felt a kinship to her. She liked writing, photography, being out in nature, and worked to beautify U.S. cities and highways. Limitation of billboards in the U.S. was part of her legacy.

Inauguration ball.
Janyce in museum display room.
The museum is small but well put together. I, again, enjoyed reading all about Lady Bird, how she got her nickname, her public speaking skills, what a shrewd investor she was, all the parks she helped dedicate, and how she advised the President.

How she handled an antagonistic crowd.
Fort Davis National Historic Site
Lady Bird in Big Bend National Park
When we finished in the museum, we walked outside to take a look at Lyndon's childhood home, and walked the nature trail to the Johnson settlement.

Lyndon Johnson's boyhood home.
Nature walk to Johnson settlement.
Johnson family settlement
Majestic old live oak on the property.
Windmill and water storage tank. Windmills
are used to draw water out of the aquifers.
Texas longhorn.
Texas longhorn.
Jan and Mom on the trail.
Purple verbena
After the history lesson and museum we took Mom and Jan to Pedernales Falls State Park for some nature time. We drove to the end of the road and hiked to see the falls. State park user fee of $6 per person to enter.

Local road 2766 to Pedernales Falls
Pedernales Falls
Cut-leaf daisy.
Water-carved rocks
Jan, Mom, Bob at Pedernales Falls
Bob and Jan overlooking the falls basin
Pedernales Falls Trail.
From Pedernales Falls, we traveled 14 miles west of Johnson City on Hwy 290 to Stonewall, Texas to the LBJ State Park and Historic Site. Here we took an audio driving tour of the LBJ ranch in our own car. (Pick up audio CD in the park visitor center.)

Our illustrious tour guide showing us the park.
We stopped at the Sauer-Beckmann Living History Farm to view life as it would have been in the early 1900s.

Bluebonnets (Lupine texensis) and whitebonnets (?). All lupine.
Isn't she just adorable? She even has bangs.
We continued our drive past Trinity Lutheran Church (President and Lady Bird Johnson did not attend church here).

Trinity Lutheran Church

Our tour then took us past a one-room schoolhouse, President Johnson's birthplace, the cemetery where they are buried, the working barn, the airstrip and finally to the Texas White House. We hopped out of the car and paid for the tour of the Texas White House. We had an excellent tour guide who kept us entertained with stories about Lyndon Baines Johnson.

Amphi-Car. President Johnson used to enjoy taking people for
a ride in this car, pretending he lost control and the car would
careen down the bank into the river, terrifying people who didn't
know it would float and still be drivable.
The Texas White House and "Cabinet Tree"
Beautiful trees along the river. Jan snapping photos of the
Texas White House.
Air Force 1/2.
Vote Mom for President!
With LBJ history firmly under our belts, we drove west on US 290 to Wildseed Farm looking for more wildflowers. Wildseed Farm, in season, has fields ablaze with color. They also have excellent peach ice cream cones. Pay the extra $1.00 for peach. It's worth it. You can have vanilla anytime.

We found a few flowers in bloom, but nothing like last April. We are too early. In about two weeks, this place will probably be at its peak. Here are photos of Wildseed Farm. Any help you can provide identifying wildflowers is greatly appreciated.

Red poppy.

California poppies.
Phlox drummondii??

Five-spot (Nemophila maculata)
Johnny jump ups
California poppies and bluebonnets.
Sweet William
Ox-eyed daisy
Wildseed Farms
Red-winged blackbird

That's it. From Wildseed Farm we headed back to San Antonio. Another long day.

Tomorrow morning Mom and Jan fly back home. We're taking them to the airport at 4:00 a.m.

Good night.