Bill Moyers

News Correspondent


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

Tab

About
About this interview

In his two hour Archive Interview, Bill Moyers discusses his upbringing in Texas and his early interest in writing and journalism. He explains how he first met Lyndon Johnson and four years later campaigned for Johnson for President in the 1960 election. He describes being present when JFK offered Johnson the Vice-Presidential ticket, shares where he was when JFK was assassinated, and discusses his roles as Deputy Director of the Peace Corps under Kennedy and as White House Press Secretary under President Johnson. He describes his role as publisher of the newspaper "Newsday", speaks of writing about cross-country travels for "Harper's Magazine", and relays how he was approached by National Educational Television to host a show on PBS - what would become This Week/ Bill Moyers' Journal. Moyers outlines memorable pieces covered on the show, and recounts how the Nixon administration reacted to coverage of Watergate. Don Carleton conducted the interview on May 16, 2001 in New York, NY.

"When I came to Public Broadcasting, to National Educational Television in 1970, it was informed with the original mission of Public Broadcasting as a continuing course in adult education - offering the best of the performing arts. Offering the best of opera. Offering the best of journalism. Offering what the market would not provide. That's how I came to Public Broadcasting. That was the mind set, mentality, history, and as you might say, legislative history that I brought with me to this system. It was designed to tell stories that were worth telling, even if advertisers wouldn't pay for their telling, or despite the fact that advertisers wouldn't pay for their selling."

Highlights
Bill Moyers on JFK's assassination and being there when Johnson was sworn in as President
03:01
Bill Moyers on being Assistant Director, then Deputy Director of the Peace Corps and reporting to Sgt. Shriver
03:18
Bill Moyers on becoming White House Press Secretary
01:45
Bill Moyers on getting approached by National Educational Television in NY (WNET) to host a show - what would become Bill Moyers' Journal
01:02
Bill Moyers on the "Daisy" ad for the 1964 Presidential campaign
05:31
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On his early years and influences; on growing up in Texas; on loving to read magazines as a youngster and listen to the news on the radio; on the first time he saw television; on high school teachers that influenced him; on working on his high school newspaper and for the town newspaper
14:14
On attending North Texas State College (now the University of North Texas), transferring to the University of Texas, and graduate school; on meeting Senator Lyndon Johnson and Johnson setting him up with a job at a TV station in Austin
08:48
On how he met his wife in college; on Joseph McCarthy's anti-communist paranoia and the very beginning of the conflict in Vietnam; on being in Washington when a Senator committed suicide
04:58

Chapter 2

On being in the building when a U.S. Senator committed suicide; on his two years at the University of Texas and the impact of his professors there; on getting a degree in Divinity; on intending to get his Ph.D. in American civilization
09:44
On linking up with Lyndon Johnson again when Johnson ran for President in 1960; on his time as a Rotary fellow in Scotland; on the 1960 Democratic Convention; on his impressions of JFK and Sam Rayburn; on JFK offering Johnson the Vice Presidential ticket; on staying on to campaign for Kennedy/Johnson and not returning to Texas to do his Ph.D.
12:32
On working with LBJ's Vice-Presidential staff; on helping to organize the Peace Corps; on being Assistant Director, then Deputy Director of the Peace Corps and reporting to JFK's brother-in-law, Sgt. Shriver
06:06

Chapter 3

On being in Austin when JFK was assassinated; on finding out JFK had been shot; on being there when Johnson was sworn in as President; on becoming White House Press Secretary; on the "Daisy" ad for the 1964 Presidential campaign
13:36
On his role and responsibilities as White House Press Secretary; on President Johnson not being good on television; on strategies for working with the press as Press Secretary
07:59
On the relationship between the Johnson administration and the press during the Vietnam War; on Lyndon Johnson's relationship with CBS
06:29

Chapter 4

On Lyndon Johnson and television; on Lyndon Johnson and the Civil Rights Movement; on dealing with the FBI trying to discredit Martin Luther King, Jr.
14:12
On who he believes killed JFK and his thoughts on the conspiracy theories and what Johnson believed; on his own beliefs about the Vietnam War
07:12
On resigning from the Johnson administration in 1967; on becoming publisher of the newspaper "Newsday"; on leaving "Newsday"
06:23

Chapter 5

On getting fired from "Newsday"; on William Morris of "Harper's Magazine" asking him to write about traveling the country; on getting approached by National Educational Television in NY (WNET) to host a show - what would become Bill Moyers' Journal; on the show's format; on his thoughts about public television and those of Lyndon Johnson
13:24
On covering Watergate and the Nixon administration's reaction - to cripple public broadcasting
05:03
Shows

Bill Moyers Journal

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Bill Moyers on getting approached by National Educational Television in NY (WNET) to host a show - what would become Bill Moyers' Journal; on the show's format
04:33
Bill Moyers on covering Watergate and the Nixon administration's reaction - to cripple public broadcasting
05:03
Topics

Civil Rights Movement

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Bill Moyers on Lyndon Johnson having a good moment on television
00:33
Bill Moyers on Lyndon Johnson and the Civil Rights Movement, and dealing with the FBI trying to discredit Martin Luther King, Jr.
07:45

Historic Events and Social Change

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Bill Moyers on the very beginning of the Vietnam conflict
00:32

JFK Assassination and Funeral

View Topic
Bill Moyers on JFK's assassination
03:01
Bill Moyers on who he believes killed JFK
01:46

John F. Kennedy

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Bill Moyers on his part in the Kennedy/Johnson campaign and Kennedy asking him to come to Washington
03:03
Bill Moyers on being Assistant Director, then Deputy Director of the Peace Corps and reporting to Sgt. Shriver
03:18
Bill Moyers on JFK's assassination
03:01

Lyndon B. Johnson

View Topic
Bill Moyers on meeting Senator Lyndon Johnson
07:30
Bill Moyers on becoming White House Press Secretary
01:45
Bill Moyers on Lyndon Johnson not being good on television
03:31
Bill Moyers on the relationship between the Johnson administration and the press during the Vietnam War
06:29
Bill Moyers on Lyndon Johnson and television 
06:27
Bill Moyers on Lyndon Johnson's thoughts on public television
06:23

Memorable Moments on Television

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Bill Moyers on the "Daisy" ad for the 1964 Presidential campaign
05:31

Richard M. Nixon

View Topic
Bill Moyers covering Watergate and the Nixon administration's reaction - to cripple public broadcasting
05:03

Vietnam War

View Topic
Bill Moyers on the very beginning of the Vietnam conflict
00:32
Bill Moyers on the relationship between the Johnson administration and the press during the Vietnam War
06:29
Bill Moyers on his own beliefs about the Vietnam War
04:52
Professions

Correspondent

View Profession
Bill Moyers on working on his high school newspaper and falling in love with the byline
00:53
Bill Moyers on becoming White House Press Secretary
01:45
Bill Moyers on the relationship between the Johnson administration and the press during the Vietnam War
06:29
Genres

Commercials

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Bill Moyers on the "Daisy" ad for the 1964 Presidential campaign
05:31

News and Documentary

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Bill Moyers on Lyndon Johnson and television 
06:27
Bill Moyers on Lyndon Johnson and the Civil Rights Movement
07:45
Bill Moyers on getting approached by National Educational Television in NY (WNET) to host a show - what would become Bill Moyers' Journal; on the show's format
15:59
People

Dwight D. Eisenhower

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Bill Moyers on the very beginning of the Vietnam conflict
00:32

Fred Friendly

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Bill Moyers on Johnson's relationship with CBS
03:43

J. Edgar Hoover

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Bill Moyers on Lyndon Johnson and the Civil Rights Movement, and dealing with the FBI trying to discredit Martin Luther King, Jr.
04:09

Lyndon B. Johnson

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Bill Moyers on meeting Senator Lyndon Johnson
07:30
Bill Moyers on Lyndon Johnson's reaction to Joseph McCarthy's anti-communist paranoia; on memorable moments from working for Johnson 
03:33
Bill Moyers on linking up with Lyndon Johnson again
01:06
Bill Moyers on working for Lyndon Johnson when Johnson made a run for the Presidency in 1960
16:33
Bill Moyers on JFK's assassination and being there when Johnson was sworn in as President; on becoming White House Press Secretary
04:46
Bill Moyers on the "Daisy" ad for the 1964 Presidential campaign
05:31
Bill Moyers on Lyndon Johnson not being good on television
03:31
Bill Moyers strategies for working with the press when he served as Johnson's White House Press Secretary
02:53
Bill Moyers on the relationship between the Johnson administration and the press during the Vietnam War
06:29
Bill Moyers on Lyndon Johnson and television 
06:27
Bill Moyers on Lyndon Johnson and the Civil Rights Movement, and dealing with the FBI trying to discredit Martin Luther King, Jr.
08:19
Bill Moyers on who he believes killed JFK and his thoughts on the conspiracy theories
01:46
Bill Moyers on his own beliefs and Johnson's beliefs about the Vietnam War
04:52
Bill Moyers on resigning from the Johnson administration in 1967
02:33
Bill Moyers on his thoughts about public television and those of Lyndon Johnson
06:23

John F. Kennedy

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Bill Moyers on working for Lyndon Johnson when Johnson made a run for the Presidency in 1960 (running against Kennedy for the Democratic nomination)
01:21
Bill Moyers on meeting JFK and JFK offering Johnson the Vice Presidential ticket; on Kennedy wanting him to work for them in Washington
14:36
Bill Moyers on JFK's assassination
03:01
Bill Moyers on who he believes killed JFK and his thoughts on the conspiracy theories
01:46

Martin Luther King, Jr.

View Person Page
Bill Moyers on Lyndon Johnson and the Civil Rights Movement, and dealing with the FBI trying to discredit Martin Luther King, Jr.
04:09

Joseph McCarthy

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Bill Moyers on the politics and paranoia of Joseph McCarthy's 
01:19

Edward R. Murrow

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Bill Moyers on how he enjoyed listening to the news on the radio when he was young
00:52

Richard M. Nixon

View Person Page
Bill Moyers covering Watergate and the Nixon administration's reaction - to cripple public broadcasting
05:03

Lee Harvey Oswald

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Bill Moyers on who he believes killed JFK and his thoughts on the conspiracy theories
01:46

Morley Safer

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Bill Moyers on the relationship between the Johnson administration and the press during the Vietnam War
06:29

Frank Stanton

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Bill Moyers on Johnson's relationship with CBS
03:43

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