A presidential library is only as interesting as the president it honors: The 36th president of the United States was a bigger-than-life boot-wearing, cigar-smoking character, and his presidential library and museum on the UT campus is equally fascinating. Lyndon Baines Johnson’s popularity in Texas and his many successes in Washington are sometimes overlooked in light of his handling of the Vietnam War, but that’s not the case here. Through photographs, papers, campaign souvenirs, and personal mementos, the Library tells the tale of Johnson’s long political career—beginning with his early years as a congressman all the way up to the Kennedy assassination, civil-rights battles, and groundbreaking Great Society legislation. LBJ recorded hundreds of hours of telephone conversations, and visitors can pick up one of many phones to listen to him laconically conducting presidential business. Some highlights: The remarkable (though not quite to scale) replica of LBJ’s White House Oval Office, where an animatronic LBJ, speaking in his thick Texas drawl, is simultaneously fascinating and creepy; and LBJ’s shiny black, custom-built 1968 Lincoln Continental stretch limo, equipped with then state-of-the-art cassette player, TV, telephone, and reserve gas tank. The library was dedicated in 1971, and until his death in 1973, LBJ kept an office here, no doubt drinking in the impressive views of the UT campus. The first presidential library to be built on a university campus, the huge travertine marble structure oversees a beautifully landscaped 14-acre complex.