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The presidential library system began in 1939. So far, the United States has 13 such libraries. Presidential libraries are the repository for photographs (official and familial), memorabilia, letters, speeches, and documents collected during the presidency. That Texas is home to three presidential libraries is a huge windfall for the touring history buff. Two are currently open for visitors.
Lyndon Baines Johnson (LBJ) Library and Museum
The LBJ library is located in Austin Texas. LBJ began his presidency on the night President John F. Kennedy was assassinated. The library covers the years 1961 through 1969. Included in the collection are the photographs, speeches, journals and documents surrounding the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, the Vietnam War, and the War on Poverty.
George Bush Presidential Library and Museum
Located in College Station, Texas, the George Bush Presidential Library’s collection includes documents, speeches and photos around the first conflict in Iraq: Desert Storm, Iraq War, the capturing of General Manuel Noriega, and President Bush’s call for a new volunteerism in America: A Thousand Points of Light. In addition, the library offers a summer day camp from June through August for children ages 7-12.
George W. Bush Presidential Library
Lewiston, Texas is the temporary home of the George W. Bush Presidential Library. The permanent location will be on the campus of Southern Methodist University and is scheduled to be open to the public in 2013. Look for documents, letters, journals and speeches surrounding September 11, 2001, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, along with his pivotal education policy: No Child Left Behind.