LBJ and a Fateful Day in Dallas

    ** FILE ** Lyndon B. Johnson is sworn in as President of the United States of America in the cabin of the presidential plane as Mrs. Jacqueline Kennedy stands at his side in this Nov. 22,1963, file photo. Judge Sarah T. Hughes, a Kennedy appointee to the Federal court,standing foreground left, administers the oath. In background, from left are, Jack Valenti, administrative assistant to Johnson; Rep. Albert Thomas, D-Tex.; Mrs. Johnson; and Rep. Jack Brooks,D-Tex. Valenti, the former White House aide and film industry lobbyist who instituted the modern movie ratings system and guided Hollywood from the censorship era to the digital age, died Thursday, April 26, 2007. He was 85. (AP Photo/White House, Cecil Stoughton)

    Cecil Stoughton / The White House / AP Photo

    In a gripping new essay in The New Yorker, historian Robert Caro traces Lyndon Johnson’s movements through the November 1963 day in Dallas that ended with him being sworn in as the nation’s 36th president. Before shots rang out in the clear Texas afternoon, LBJ’s finances were the subject of scrutiny by a team of investigative reporters, and a Senate rules committee probe into a Johnson protégé known as “Little Lyndon” had threatened to contaminate the master of the Senate himself. Newsweek reporter Charles Roberts was one of three journalists to witness Johnson’s swearing-in after John F. Kennedy’s assassination. Nothing, as Caro shows, was certain, but when history happened, it happened fast.

    Read it at The New Yorker