U.S. House of Representatives, District 10
Johnson served as congressman for Texas’s 10th District from 1937 to 1949. During this time, he leveraged his political influence to secure Public Works Administration funds for the college. SWTSTC used this money to build a new auditorium-laboratory school and thus improve the training opportunities for the college’s students. The ALS building housed the first six grades of the training school, which operated as the main educational institution for the children of the San Marcos School District. The building opened for the fall 1939 semester, with an official dedication ceremony in the spring of 1940.
Though scheduled to speak at the ALS building’s dedication on Saturday, April 6, 1940, Congressman Johnson was unable to attend. However, President C.E. Evans made sure to credit Johnson’s instrumentality in the project, claiming that “without Lyndon Johnson, the ALS building would never have been built.” Despite his absence at the building’s dedication, Johnson soon saw his contributions to the college. On October 21, 1941, the congressman addressed SWTSTC and San Marcos Baptist Academy's students in a morning assembly in the new ALS building.
1942 Summer Commencement
Johnson delivered the main address at President Evans's final commencement ceremony in August 1942. He credited his mentor for teaching Johnson that life's highest achievements are not wealth or power, but rather service, the spread of democracy, and the betterment of the world for all people. Having recently returned from serving in the U.S. Navy, Johnson's message highlighted World War II's threat to the future of the United States. His broadcasted speech urged students to heavily contribute to the war effort, for "never did a graduating class emerge into a world that needed it more."