Friday, May 28, 2021
Historical Background on Memorial Day
Welcome to my Travel Friday’s B.R.E.A.T.H.S. blog post. I’m starting travel blogging with my tour of the United States National Parks© Services (NPS). This week I am writing a special edition tour of two President Lyndon B. Johnson’s (LBJ) Parks located in Stonewall, Texas. I chose LBJ’s Parks because he is the President who, along with Congress, declared Waterloo, NY as the birthplace of Memorial Day back in 1966 (OPIA, 2021). Here is a bit of a historical background on Memorial Day that is all new knowledge to me.
According to the U.S. Office of Public and Intergovernmental Affairs (OPIA, 2021), during the months of April and May 1866, approximately 25 states were having Memorial Day ceremonies observing fallen soldiers of the Civil War. After World War I, Memorial Day was expanded to all fallen soldiers of American wars and held on May 30 (OPIA, 2021). In 1971, Congress declared Memorial Day a national holiday to be held on the last Monday in May (OPIA, 2021). That is when we now traditionally celebrate all of our American fallen soldiers and many families travel to cemeteries to pay tribute to their brave loved ones.
Tour of Two LBJ Parks
This leads me to my tours of two LBJ parks located in Stonewall, TX. Below I will give you an outside peek around the two LBJ parks that I visited on February 4, 2021 (most indoor museums were closed due to Covid restrictions). My first stop is LBJ State Park with pictures and a few videos of my tour. The second stop was at LBJ National Historical Park, which is also known as LBJ Ranch, where the late president lived his entire life and is buried with his family.
Tour of Lyndon B. Johnson State Park & Historic Site
My friend, Tiffany from Austin, took me on a tour around her part of Texas. We first stopped at Lyndon B. Johnson State Park where we walked along the nature trail to see Texas wildlife like the Texas longhorns, twisted oak trees, bunches of ball moss, textured bark, limestones, and cactus. Then we visited the Sauer-Beckmann Living History Farm with costumed interpreters exhibiting life in 1918 by working on daily farm chores. Below are some pictures and videos of the experience at LBJ State Park.
LBJ Official Texas State Longhorn Herd
LBJ State Park Nature Trail
Sauer-Beckmann Living History Farm
We were able to interact with the livestock and talk to the live presenters who worked on the farm doing real work with farming crops, raising animals, and maintaining the living history farm.
Tour of Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park
Our next stop on our tour of two LBJ parks we drove through Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park. This is the site of LBJ Ranch where President Johnson was born, lived, died, and buried. We drove by his old church, school house, farm house, livestock, and even his airplane hanger.
That concludes my tours of two LBJ parks in honor of Memorial Day Weekend. While I did visit the LBJ National Park, I did not have my National Parks© Passport book at the time to get my stamp for visiting. However, I have the Collector’s Edition that allows me to take a page out of my book and mail it to whichever park I need to collect a cancellation stamp as long as I include return postage with it. Happy trails until next National Parks© tour!
Thank you for reading and viewing
Dr. Jaime Brainerd, Ed.D.
Reference: Office of Public and Intergovernmental Affairs (OPIA). (2021). Memorial Day history. Retrieved from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs website https://www.va.gov/opa/speceven/memday/history.asp
8 thoughts on “Memorial Day Weekend Special Edition: Tour of Two LBJ Parks”
I have visited these places a few times, as they aren’t too far from me. Did you happen to visit the family home in Johnson City? It was another home of the Johnson’s. Its sweet and a great place to take photos in the summer!
Hi Angie, thank you for your comment and question. We did not go to the home because most things were still closed indoors due to Covid restrictions (National Parks had strict federal regulations in every state). I visit Texas often and would love to check out the home you mentioned in Johnson City, as well as return to the LBJ Ranch to see the Texas White House which was closed when we visited. Best regards, Jaime.
Thank you for introducing me to these national parks. We are avid hikers and love scouting them out for hiking/walk, historical interest and other active opportunities. Today we leave for Maui, HI and will be visiting the beautiful Haleakalā National Park again.
Hi Rachel, thank you for the comment, I plan to visit Maui and the National Parks close to there in July for the first time! Hope you have a blast on your vacation. I would love any pointers or tips you have on visiting Maui! Best regards, Jaime.
This is how I know I have not done enough exploring in my life. I live in Texas and this is another thing I have yet to visit. Thank you for sharing!
What an awesome your and with the videos it was like I was there with you! Love your photos. We have a living history farm not far from our where we live. Now that Lia is so interested in nature and animals we plan to take her over.
Awesome videos and photos.Thanks for sharing.
Parks are American treasures. Thanks for sharing this one with us.