Friday, March 24, 2017


After leaving New Orleans, we headed to Austin, Texas. We had originally planned to stay in the Houston/Galveston area for a few days. I say originally because when we couldn't find a place to stay, we discovered it was Spring Break in Texas. Hearing that was enough for us to decide we would just go on to Austin. Finding higher hotel rates in Austin than publicized, we discovered Austin was hosting a film, music, and comedy festival called SXSW ("South by Southwest). We did manage to find a hotel to stay that was reasonable once they gave us a discount we qualified for. We were told parking would be atrocious downtown because of the festival, but the only problem we found was traveling on I-35 through town. It was like a parking lot. We soon discovered side streets to take to avoid it so it wasn't too bad.

The first place we went was to the presidential library of President Lyndon Baines Johnson. It is located on the campus of the University of Texas and only a mile from the state capitol and a few more museums. Parking was not a problem there and it was free.

This was my 6th or 7th presidential library to tour. As always I leave amazed and overwhelmed at the accomplishments of the president. 

President Johnson, became president following the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. He served from 1963 - 1969. He refused to run for another term and retired to his ranch in Texas. With President Johnson, unfortunately, our involvement in the Vietnam War overshadowed all of his great accomplishments. I took a few pictures of some of these as displayed in the library.

This is a smaller scale version of the Oval Office while he was president.

The view of Austin from the top floor of the library  with the U of T football stadium on the right.

His limousine...

As I said it was only 1 mile to the Capitol, so we decided to just leave the car parked in the parking lot by the library and walk.

Not so far....and we are there at the North entrance....

The Texas Capitol is the largest capitol building in the country. It doesn't necessarily look like it but once you get inside you learn how they dug down 4 stories and have offices located there. The two small buildings on the right are actually elevators that will take you down there and by-pass the main building. On the other side of the street you can see some shrubbery and a wall. There are skylights to below at the shrubbery and it is actually opened to below at the wall. There are two "buildings" on the other side (you can see the edge of one of them on the left side of the picture) that also house elevators.

Even though you can enter the building on each side, we walked around to the other side (the South side) and what is called the main entrance. We only had to wait a few minutes for a tour to start. Unfortunately (because it was Spring break) there were lots of people visiting the capitol that day and our tour group was so big that I missed out on most of what our docent had to tell us. 

Here are a few pictures inside the capitol....

Looking up in the dome
On the floor below the dome

The House of Representatives....

The Senate....

From the gallery

One more look at the floor 

Walking back to the car, we passed the Bullock Museum. We would have toured it, but it was going to close in an hour, so we decided we would wait and do it the next day. (Our plans got changed though and we didn't make it back. I think it would have been a good museum and we would have learned a lot.)

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