Covid-19 Related Precautions: Essential History Expeditions and the Center for Presidential History will ensure adherence to all Covid-19 recommended precautions in place in May 2021. Guests will be responsible for their own transportation throughout the trip. Breakfasts will be included at the hotels, lunches will be on your own at onsite cafes where available, and group dinners will be at restaurants with excellent outdoor dining space within walking distance from the hotels. Essential History Expeditions will provide hand sanitizer after each stop. This trip is predicated on the successful opening of all included sites by May 2021.
Presidential history runs deep in Texas, from the birthplaces of Dwight Eisenhower and Lyndon Baines Johnson to the foundational stories of LBJ, George HW Bush and George W Bush. From the Presidents of the Republic of Texas era to the last moments of John Fitzgerald Kennedy. Presidential history in the Lone Star State is, indeed, Texas-sized, with three Presidential Libraries and Museums residing here. The SMU Center for Presidential History and Essential History Expeditions have teamed to offer an in-depth examination of Texas presidents.
Issues of national and international importance will be in the fore, from Vietnam to Iraq, from the Great Society to the Great Recession, and the Cold War and its ending with the fall of the Berlin Wall. And much more.
Our journey will begin in the rolling Hill Country with the famed LBJ Ranch and Texas White House. In Austin, we will visit the LBJ Library & Museum and State Capitol Building. A couple of hours east lies Washington-on-the-Brazos and the beginnings of the Republic. We will discuss presidents Houston, Lamar, Jones and acting-president Burnet here. Anson Jones’ plantation house, “Barrington”, is on the historic site grounds. Huntsville has Sam Houston’s museum and gravesite. Then it’s over to College Station where we will visit the GHW Bush Library & Museum. Dallas is our final destination, with visits to Dealey Plaza and the 6th Floor Museum to discuss JFK, followed by a visit to the GW Bush Library & Museum.
Each day we will begin with opening lectures from Professors Jeff Engel, Director of the Center for Presidential History, Brian Franklin, Deputy Director of the Center, and Brian DeToy of Essential History Expeditions. Visits to the museums and libraries will fill the central parts of the days, followed by a group Q&A session to delve deeper into the issues we confronted in the visit. Where possible, we will have members of the presidential administrations join our group to share lessons and stories at the elbow of world leadership.
The First Ladies – Lady Bird, Barbara and Laura – will receive their due, as well, in both our discussions and museum exhibits.
Texas will also come to life for us, from large cities to small towns, from Hill Country wineries and ranches to the prairies and lakes of the east. Microbreweries and barbecue.
Quality lodging and meals, with time for camaraderie and continued discussion, will make for an unforgettable experience with both old friends and those newly made.