Born in Dallas in 1929, author Billy Lee Brammer worked as an editor for the Texas Observer before moving to Washington to serve as an aide to then-Senator Lyndon Johnson.

Brammer's highly acclaimed 1961 novel The Gay Place—which takes its title from a poem by F. Scott Fitzgerald—is one of the most revealing accounts of Texas politics ever written. Brammer based the characters on people and places he knew in Austin in the fifties, including the writer Willie Morris and the popular watering hole Scholz Garten.

Brammer never followed up on the success of The Gay Place, but he remained a fixture on the Austin literary and political scene until his death in 1978. More»

Billy Lee Brammer in the Caswell House, 1966. Photo by Bob Simmons.