ALTHOUGH books about recent American political leaders customarily ascribe authorship to one person, an army of people is needed to make such studies possible.
How far would I have gotten without the work of others who organized and opened the mass of papers housed at the Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library? I am indebted to Harry Middleton, the Library's Director, who is devoted to making the record of Lyndon Johnson's life and career available as quickly and fully as possible. I have also been the beneficiary of Harry Middleton's efforts to encourage Lyndon Johnson's closest associates to grant me interviews. The Library's staff was unstinting in its help: Molly Chesney, Charles Corkran, Kathy Frankum, Theodore Gittinger, Regina Greenwell, Linda Hanson, Tina Houston, David Humphrey, Lawrence Reed, E. Philip Scott, Robert Tissing, Shellynne Wucher, and Gary Yarrington. Three people have been especially kind and helpful. Claudia Anderson put her masterful command of the LBJ pre-presidential papers at my disposal. Her help was indispensable. The same was true of Michael Gillette, head of the oral history division, whose knowledge of the Johnson years is incomparable. Nancy Smith, who now works in the Office of Presidential Libraries, National Archives, Washington, D.C., helped guide my research in the crucial opening stages of the book. The Lyndon B. Johnson Foundation aided my research with two timely grants.
A number of other people and institutions helped advance my work in a variety of ways. Norman D. Brown, Robert A. Divine, and Clarence G. Lasby of the University of Texas and Louis S. Gomolak of Southwest Texas State University shared materials and insights with me. Christie Bourgeois, J. Kaaz Doyle, Craig H. Roell, and Stacy Rozek, graduate students at the University of Texas, performed a variety of tasks for which I am grateful. Larry Temple, an Austin attorney and former member of President Johnson's staff, and George Christian, LBJ's press secretary, helped arrange an interview with former Governor John B. Connally and showed me other kindnesses. No two people made my visits to Austin more satisfying than Elspeth and Walt W. Rostow. They have given new meaning to the term southern hospitality.