The Roosevelts and the House of Orange

By Paul Sparrow, Director, FDR Library. The relationship between the Roosevelt family and the Dutch royal family, known as the House of Orange, is both charming and historically significant. New York and the Hudson River Valley were both originally settled by Dutch pioneers. And the Netherlands was the first country to recognize the United States. … Continue reading The Roosevelts and the House of Orange

The President on Broadway: FDR, George M. Cohan, and “I’d Rather Be Right”

by William A. Harris, Deputy Director, FDR Library. Lambasting the President through low comedy or high satire shocks no one these days, especially during an election year. With the exception of editorial cartoons, before the 1960s, that wasn’t always the case. Motion pictures and the legitimate theater traditionally offered reverent presentations of the Presidents. FDR … Continue reading The President on Broadway: FDR, George M. Cohan, and “I’d Rather Be Right”

Happy Birthday Franklin Roosevelt

By Paul M. Sparrow, Director, FDR Library. Birthdays are always a good time to take stock and look back. On this, the 134th anniversary of Franklin Roosevelt’s birth, it is important to remember what made him so special. He was born at Springwood, the family home in Hyde Park. It was a difficult birth on … Continue reading Happy Birthday Franklin Roosevelt

The True Story Behind the Most Important Speech of the 20th Century

By Paul Sparrow, Director, FDR Library. One day before the 74th anniversary of President Roosevelt’s historic address to Congress in response to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor it is important to examine the true meaning of the speech, and how it came to be. It is rare when a presidential speech transcends the political … Continue reading The True Story Behind the Most Important Speech of the 20th Century

The Most Important Presidential Election in History

By Paul M. Sparrow, Director, FDR Library. There is always a lively debate when people discuss “the most important” presidential elections in American history. Abraham Lincoln’s victory in 1860 and his leadership during the Civil War, the peaceful transfer of power from John Adams to Thomas Jefferson in 1800, and the 1932 election of Franklin … Continue reading The Most Important Presidential Election in History

“I Have Returned!” – General MacArthur and FDR

By Paul M. Sparrow, Director, FDR Library. On Oct. 20, 1944 Gen. Douglas MacArthur waded ashore on Leyte Island in the Philippines and fulfilled his promise to return. The charismatic and dashing General was one of the most famous American military leaders in the world and his dramatic return to his beloved Philippines was a … Continue reading “I Have Returned!” – General MacArthur and FDR

Defending Fala – A Lesson in Effective Campaigning

By Paul Sparrow, Director, FDR Library. As we enter into the quadrennial campaign for the White House, it is informative to look back at one of Franklin Roosevelt’s most memorable campaign moments. There were many, as he was a ferocious campaigner who loved being on the hustings, but one of the most effective concerned his … Continue reading Defending Fala – A Lesson in Effective Campaigning

FDR, Christianity and the environment

By Paul M. Sparrow, Director, FDR Library. Few people realize what an environmental advocate Franklin D. Roosevelt truly was. Or how frequently he invoked the Bible in his speeches. Ronald Isetti in his article “The Moneychangers of the Temple: FDR, American Civil Religion, and the New Deal:” states that “Few presidents employed biblical symbols, religious … Continue reading FDR, Christianity and the environment

Happy Mother’s Day

This Mother's Day we celebrate two of the mothers in FDR's life - Sara and Eleanor. Happy Mother's Day - To FDR? In 1940, FDR and his mother, Sara Delano Roosevelt, celebrated Mother’s Day in an unconventional manner—she gave her son a gift! This role reversal was connected to the creation of the Roosevelt Library. … Continue reading Happy Mother’s Day