Fourty-nine years ago today, the Voting Rights Act was passed. Right now, we’re happy to be working on a new StoryCorps short about one woman’s struggle to get the right to vote.
Look for it next year. Meanwhile, storyboard by Tim and Rafael Rosado above.
Sept. 28, 1967. Accompanied by Texas Governor John Connally, LBJ heads to the US-Mexico border, recently stricken by severe flooding from Hurricane Beulah (map of region here). The slow-moving storm has cut a broad swath of destruction. A 14-foot surge swept across South Padre Island, in the Gulf of Mexico, and the overflowing Rio Grande flooded houses to the rooftops in Harlingen, TX.
Both sides of the border have been devastated, and volunteers, especially medical personnel, have responded with an outpouring of assistance. The US Army has even dispatched aid helicopters to remote areas of Mexico like Comales (map).
LBJ is on his way to visit a high school-turned-emergency hospital in Rio Grande City that (according to the President’s Daily Diary) houses 1,500 to 2,000 people, 99% of them Mexican nationals.
LBJ photo via LBJ Library, #A4871-24, public domain. Other photos via The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. Lots more in their digital archives here. More on Beulah via NOAA.