Franklin D. Roosevelt



Number President 32nd President
Terms Served 3 and 1 half ( Only president to serve more than 2 terms)
Dates Served 1933-1945
Party Democrat
State Represented New York
Married to / First Lady Anna Eleanor Roosevelt
Born January 30, 1882 in Hyde Park, New York
Died April 12, 1945 in Warm Springs, Georgia
Age Franklin D. Roosevelt would be 126 years old this year.


Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the 32nd U.S. President served four terms in office and till date is the only President to be elected in office for over two terms. His tenure as President was associated with world wide economic depression and World War II.

Born in January 30, 1882 in the Hudson Valley of Hyde Park he belonged to a renowned and wealthy family of New York. He was the only child with an illustrious lineage. His formative years were spent in the lap of luxury under the direct tutelage of his parents, mainly his mother Sara. He grew up to be well conversant in German and French languages and was an active sportsman taking part in Polo, Golf, Lawn Tennis, Horseback riding and Swimming.

 He completed his schooling from Groton School and undergraduate studies at Harvard University. During his student days, his cousin Theodore Roosevelt was elected U.S. President who became Franklin’s role model. In 1907, he passed the New York State Bar examination and in 1908 was engaged by a prestigious Wall Street firm specializing in Corporate Law. Franklin married Eleanor on March 17, 1905 and had six children.
Roosevelt was deeply involved with the U.S. Navy and displayed great administrative talent and negotiation skills with the Congressional and other government leaders. In 1910, he won the New York Senate election and was the Democrat nominee for Vice President in 1920. In 1918 he visited France and England for inspecting U.S. Naval facilities and met Winston Churchill which later blossomed into personal friendship.

 In 1921, Roosevelt contacted the dreaded Poliomyelitis and was practically paralyzed from waist down. But through sheer indomitable courage, hydro therapy and proper medication, he regained use of his legs  by using crutches at times.  He never allowed the public to view him on a wheel chair as he always stood upright, through support, in public appearances. He founded an institution for the treatment of Polio patients.

In 1928 he was became the Governor of New York and in 1932 he was elected the U.S. President. This was the phase of Great Depression of America and Roosevelt helped the Americans regain faith in themselves by bringing relief and employment opportunities. This was the period when millions were unemployed, banks closed and business houses lay ruined as aftermath of the War. He proposed sweeping programs where relief and recovery were assured to business houses, agricultural sector and to the employees.

 One such program was the Tennessee Valley Authority. Through these programs, the government achieved some measure of economic stability. Among his other initiatives was the Social Security System. This new set of reforms was propounded because some bankers and business men were turning against his New Deal Program.

In 1936, Roosevelt was re-elected with a huge popular mandate and revolutionized the Constitutional Law. The government could legally regulate the economy. He transformed the “Monroe Doctrine” into mutual action against aggressors. He followed this aggressive policy when France and Great Britain were seized in 1940 by active involvement through sending aids of all types.

When the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor 1941, he prepared the nation for global war by organizing the American manpower and industrial infrastructure. During the War, Roosevelt and his aides provided decisive leadership against the Axis powers and made U.S. the principal supplier of Arms and an active participant. Realizing the importance of Soviet Union for maintaining world peace, he devised ways to set-up a United Nation where international issues would be diplomatically sorted out. America led by Roosevelt became the “Arsenal of Democracy” through active revitalization of its manpower, military strength and industrial prowess.

 He and his wife, Eleanor, were icons of modern American liberalism.

In the domestic front, industrial development and expansion took place, prosperity through employment was restored and new opportunities opened for African-American women. Introduction of new taxes, price controls and rationing shaped the post-war world. His administration reconstructed American liberalism and redefined the Democrat Party.

As the war drew to a close, his health deteriorated and on April 12, 1945 at Warm Spring, Georgia, he died of cerebral attack. He was the longest serving U.S. President in history and left behind stunning legacies of a war time chief executive, post-war reconstruction and revival of the powerful American economy.




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