R May 7, 1982 A Journal of Free Voices 75 0 LBJ: The Hill Country Roots By Ronnie Dugger “About my background,” he said, “you might say that Lyndon Johnson is a cross between a Baptist preacher and a cowboy.” On another occasion he said, “If I hadn’t gone into politics, I think I would have been a teacher or a preacher.” In his name, Lyndon Baines Johnson, he carried forward the two families that converged in his birth. The. Baineses were southern slaveowners, the Johnsons western cattle-drivers. Baines men made their ways in religion, journalism, and law, Johnson men in ranching, farming, and politics. From the Baineses through his mother Lyndon had laid on him the piety and cant of Puritan gentlemen in high collars and their women fretting about how things will look. From the Johnsons through his father he got the gaminess and radicalism of the West and the craftiness that helped make a hard life livable. Continued on page 4 Excerpted from The Politician: The Life and Times of Lyndon Johnson, by Ronnie Dugger. Reprinted with permission of the publishers, W. W. Norton, Inc., New York, N. Y.
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