Lyndon B. Johnson (1908-1973) werd tamelijk minutieus opgetekend in een 'diary'. Ook de moordaanslag op Martin Luther King en de formele reactie van de president daarop zijn erin vermeld. De fragmenten die over de aanslag gaan, zijn hier opgenomen, de overige activiteiten van de president zijn weggelaten.
April 4, 1968
7:24 pm - Tom Johnson with news that Martin Luther King shot in Memphis.
7:40 pm -8 pm - President signing mail and listening to dinner TV news reports about King's assassination.
8:20 pm - Message from George Christian that Justice Dept. advised King is dead. President decided not to go to
Congressional Fund Raising Dinner.
8:25 pm - George Christian, Tom Johnson, Joe Califano [Special Assistant to the President] - to say that TV was almost ready for President's talk. Then Christian and Johnson out through mdjr's office to say tonight's trip to Hawaii cancelled.
8:56 pm - President, accompanied
by Joe Califano, went to the barber shop, and
while there called Mrs. Martin Luther King in
Atlanta at her residence - - flowers also sent to Mrs. King for funeral,
9:05 pm - President en route from barber shop to Press
Room for talk on TV about Martin Luther King,
his assassination, violence, devisiveness, about
working together in unity.
9:10 pm - To Oval Office - dictated telegram to Mrs. King. Signing mail and official business papers while
listening to TV news reports from Memphis, Tenn.
9:36 pm - [telephone call] Governor Buford Ellington, in Memphis, Tenn, who said he
wanted to let the President know that he had called the
Atty. Gen, right away and was keeping him informed of
everything that was being done in Memphis; that it was
a real rough situation, and he was putting in as much
protective strength as possible including the Guard. President continued to sign
to the newscasts, and talk to office staff that arrived.
April 5, 1968
11:00 am - The President approved and dispatched a telegram to
Dr. and Mrs. Martin Luther King. Sr. -
condolence on the death of their son.
11:10 am - To Cabinet Room for meeting with civil rights leaders.
11: 2 am Joe Califano wrote memo to the President--
"McKissick just came to gate of WH w/ two other negroes whom
he demanded be allowed to attend the meeting. McKissic k was
invited to the mtg and other two could wait in the basement .
McKissick said unless he could bring them to the meeting he
was leaving ... and he left."
1 l:59 am - 12:10 pm - The President departed the White House - via motorcade -
[...] for Memorial Service for Dr. Martin Luther King.
12:54 pm Departed National Cathedral ibb c w/ same group.
1:00 pm - To Fish Room - for statement - televised.
1:56 pm - President to little lounge with Harry McPherson. McPherson said Mayor Washington
came in & said rioting in D.C. getting out of control
and troops would be needed.
5:40 pm - [telephone call] Mayor Richard Daley - Chicago. The President just wanted to see how things were going.
The Mayor said that he had called out 6,000 guardsmen as a
precautionary measure, they were having window breaking and some fires.
The President said that there were fires and window breaking and general
"hell raising" in Washington and he had called out army troops and guardsmen. The President said he just wanted to keep in touch and wanted the
Mayor to know that anything he needed to keep law and order would be
at his disposal.
7:59 pm - [telephone call] Mayor Joseph Alioto of San Francisco - returning his call
[...] The Mayor told the President that they had a
- 10,000 people rally for Dr. King on the City Hall steps, and "took
the steam out of them."
10:40 pm - Tom Johnson. The President asked Tom for a report on how things were going with the
press, and Tom replied that he thought they had handled themselves
well today. They were still in the lobby, and were waiting for some sort
ending. Tom began drafting a statement for him to read to the press
saying that the President was keeping in close touch with the situation
and talking on the telephone to his advisers.
10:58 pm - Dinner. During dinner the President turned on the television and watched televised
reports of burning and looting.
He said that he had information which indicated that Mayor Daley of
Chicago was marked for assassination, and asked JAC to see that the
FBI got this information to Daley's police people.
April 6, 1968
10:40 pm - [telephone call] The Attorney General - "What is going on in Chicago, and have you heard about Jimmy
Brown the soul singer who spoke to the negro people this afternoon
April 7, 1968
11:47 am - The President decided to go to 12:15p Mass at St. Dominic' s Cathlic
Church in view of this being the day he declared as the official day
of mourning for Dr. Martin Luther King. He asked that Joe Califano and Jim Jones accompany him.
1:15 pm - The President departed St. Dominic' s Catholic Church
(after a very touching departure from the Church. After the final
hymn, each person in the church kept his seat, and stood as the
President walked up the aisle with his family. . . . smiles and warm
eyes and hearts seemed to reach out to the President, and a feeling
of love and understanding was on each face.)
April 9, 1968
4:35 pm - The President returned to Aspen Lodge and sat in the living room
where staff members were watching coverage of the funeral of Martin