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tv   Restoration of La Belle  CSPAN  January 4, 2015 2:30pm-2:41pm EST

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have oval office replicas. this is distinct for two reasons. it's slightly smaller than the actual oval office. the reason it is smaller is because it was added as an afterthought to stop president johnson wanted visitors to the library to see where the president worked but we did not have a large enough space to accommodate the oval office, so it's slightly smaller than the actual office. the other thing that makes it unique is this is the actual furniture in lyndon johnson's white house, including his desk. this is not the resolute desk we associate with the president the death -- the desk president obama uses and the photo many of us recognize with john f. kennedy junior popping out of his father's desk. johnson however, because he wanted to take his furniture back to the presidential library
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offered instead to use the desk he had as a senator. he used this when he was senate majority leader and use this as fight resident and took it to the oval office when he ascended to the presidency. that is his chair, his telephone, this is his suite of furniture, including the rocking chair that he sat in on meetings. you will recognize that being similar to the rocking chairs john f. kennedy used when he was president. it was done by the same manufacturer. every president gets to choose the portraits he wants to grace his oval office. in president johnson's case, he chose george washington, andrew jackson, and his hero, franklin roosevelt. he was very much a product of the new zealand was a protege of franklin roosevelt saw the great potential in young lyndon
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johnson. when johnson became president, it was his hope he would finish the new deal and finish with his great society what president roosevelt started with the new deal. one of the things fdr left unaddressed was civil rights. ultimately president johnson will be remembered as the civil rights president for having signed into law the civil rights act of 1964 which broke the back of jim crow and separate but equal laws. voting rights act of 1965 which gave all americans unimpeded access to the ballot box and the fair housing act of 1968 which allowed for fair housing for all americans. that is a triumvirate of civil rights legislation and the legacy of lyndon johnson. >> all weekend, american history
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tv is featuring austin texas the lone star state's n fourth largest city. posted by our time you cable partners, the c-span city tour staff recently visited sites showcasing austan's history. learn more about austan all weekend here on american history tv. ♪ >> the story here we are telling here is an incredible story of a european attempt to colonize the northern gulf of mexico. we think we have a great story to tell, a story that changed texas and american history. lasalle is the key character. he discovered the mouth of the
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mississippi river in 1682 and claimed the land for france. he got the commission from king louis the 14th come back and build a colony at the mississippi river mouth. he got his supplies together and came back in 1684 and landed on the texas coast thinking he was at the mouth of the mississippi river. in fact, he thought texas was part of the mouth of the mississippi river and thought he would find his river to build his colony. he had a map he and his mapmaker put together that was dramatically wrong. it shows the mississippi river coming down the confident -- dummy continent and linking up to the rio grande and flowing into texas at the western and of the gulf of mexico. it got him way off course. he offloaded the ships, lost another supply ship and was down
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to two ships. when ship had orders to take the colonists and supplies and sailed back to france and that ship did that. basically in 1865 -- 1685, he's down to one ship and had to sail somewhere to get help. he looked in vain for the mississippi river and couldn't find it. he finally decided in 1685, here at everything he left in his final colony, he would sail as far as he could to the northeast and matagorda bay and would go overland, find the river, come back and get his ship. he left the ship with 29 people on it saying stay there, don't move. two months later, people on board the ship had run out of water and things got so bad that the captain of the ship decided
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he would violate the orders, pull up anchor, sail back to where the other french people were at the other end of the bay. when he did that, a notorious cold front luther texas in february of 1686 and he wrecked on the southern shore of matagorda bay. the ship was discovered in 1985 and the texas historical commission decided to hold a double rim cofferdam around the rack. matagorda bay is very difficult to dive in. there is not much visibility. so all the water could be pumped out and it could be a moist dig. it took about two years, just looking at the ship itself, to clean all of the surface of the timber. then, a rough reconstruction had to take place so we knew everything would fit back together. whole conservation process
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lasted from approximately 2003 two about 2014. the ship is currently being reconstructed at the bob bullock texas history museum in austin, texas. parts of what we see right now are progress in putting back the frames and longitudinal parts of the vessel itself. the keel is the base and we have frame sets and the spaces in between the gray carbon fiber laminate will be sealed. this will be solid timber in front of us. ask how did you find this ship? >> we knew it was out there because the presence of the
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french in this part of the new world caused great alarm to spain. spain said they could control the northern gulf of mexico in what is today texas, but they had no one appear. when the french came in trying to establish a colony, this -- spain heard about this and said we are going to stop king louis the 14th. we need to send people up there to find lasalle and stop the colony. 11 expeditions came looking for it and eventually one of them in 1689 found the remains of the french camp they had set up with all the colonists at that point, dead. and miraculously for modern-day archaeologists, they found the remains of the ship above the water and they made a map. the map shows a bay that looks like matagorda bay and they named the ship the broken ship. based upon that document, we
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went out searching for it and got lucky and found it. we brought up a beautiful bronze cannon with french writing on it and the insignia of the grand admiral of france. it turns out we had a treasure trove of historical importance. we had a kit for building a colony in the 17th century new world. i'm not aware of those objects existing together. by excavating this artifacts, we have been able to peer into the mind of lasalle and what he thought he needed to build a successful colony in the new world. >> labelle was built in 1684 specifically for this endeavor. it was intended to be a ship hit and come over with a larger
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supply ship. unfortunately, a couple of months before they were due to sail, the cargo hold was full and there was no more room, so hastily, they corrected the ship in france and included her to make a fleet of four ships with the colonists coming over all stop when i mention the ship kit, you can see the numbers here along the keel. this is a the, one and it has been little obliterated there -- this one is little clearer. you can see and a car. when we finish year, part of the dynamic of this whole project is the exhibit designers have

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