Lyndon Johnson’s “Great Society” sought to create an America where poverty and racial injustice would have no place.

Newly elected President Lyndon Johnson declares a “War on Poverty,” challenging Americans to build a “Great Society” in which “no child will go unfed” and “where no man who wants work will fail to find it.” Johnson’s ambitious programs seek in part to expand the social safety net for millions of Americans by improving access to jobs, education and health care. While the effectiveness of these federal programs can be debated, they do highlight the importance of the work the Union Gospel Mission had already been doing for more than 60 years.

Photos courtesy of LBJ Presidential Library.