When President Johnson called for a barbecue to be planned, the man called to do the cooking was Walter Jetton. Jetton was an old Texan who cooked in a very traditional cattle drive way. For a barbecue pit, he used four large pieces of sheet metal attached at the corners with wire to form a pit. He built his fire right on the ground (6 inches of sand protected LBJ's lawn) and cooked on a large metal grate. For atmosphere Jetton suggested going to a fine restaurant, carefully observing the atmosphere there and then doing the opposite. The best chairs, he says, are "fallen down logs or maybe some bales of hay". Remember this guy organized official state dinners for the President.
Walter Jetton is considered to be one of the old masters of barbecue. During his day Texas style barbecue went from something cowboys ate on the trail to a popular way of cooking. When it came to brisket, Jetton himself wasn't a big fan. His brisket was slow cooked in a dutch oven until done, then mopped and placed on the grill, and turned every 20 minutes. Now I know that a lot of hardcore barbecue fans will think it blasphemy to prepare a brisket this way. All I can suggest is that you try it. The recipes below will provide you with the know how to make a go of it.