Sheet of 6 Honors 75th Memorial Anniversary of President FDR
Elected president four times, Roosevelt (1882-1945) served in the nation’s highest office longer than any other chief executive – 12 years. He was born on January 30, 1882, in Hyde Park, the only child in a wealthy family. Roosevelt studied at Columbia Law School. In 1910, he was elected to the New York state senate.
He was appointed assistant secretary of the navy in 1913. Roosevelt was stricken with polio in 1921. Although permanently disabled, he remained active in politics. In 1928, Roosevelt was elected governor of New York – he was re-elected in 1930. As the Great Depression ravaged America in 1932, he was elected president over President Herbert Hoover.
President Roosevelt quickly began to use the power of the federal government to repair the nation’s failed economy. He introduced a sweeping economic program that provided relief, loans, and jobs, as well as other means of stimulating the economy, under the heading of the “New Deal.” Roosevelt was overwhelmingly re-elected in 1936, as the public rallied behind his innovative policies.
The President was determined to keep America out of the European conflict, but when World War II began, he provided aid to Great Britain. In 1940, he was elected to an unprecedented third term. With the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, the U.S. entered WW II. Roosevelt declared December 7 “A date which will live in infamy.” Roosevelt’s diplomatic finesse was key in forging an alliance with Great Britain and the U.S.S.R.
In 1944, despite failing health, Roosevelt was elected to a fourth term. At that time, Allied forces were closing in on Germany and Japan – victory was close. However, Roosevelt did not live to see the war to its conclusion. He died on April 12, 1945 – just 83 days after his third re-election.