Wednesday, June 03, 2015

The Roosevelts: An Intimate History!--A Review (Part 4)

4-The Storm (1920-1933)
Great suffering can change a person.--Eleanor Roosevelt
Franklin Roosevelt:
-1920 was the first election where women could vote.  James M. Cox was the Democrat nominee for president and he picked Franklin to run as his vice presidential running mate.  They lost to Warren G. Harding & Calvin Coolidge in a landslide.
-Harding appointed Teddy Roosevelt Jr. to be Assistant Secretary to the Navy.
-On August 10, 1921, Franklin felt funny, after this day he would never walk without help again.
-Eleanor and Louie Howe took care of him, and then also hired a nurse.
-He was 39 years old when he was finally diagnosed with polio.
-Eleanor and Sara (Franklin's mother) disagreed on what Franklin should do to get better.
-On October 9, 1922 Franklin went back to work.
-He spent a lot of time away from Eleanor trying to rebuild his legs.  He also ignored his children during this time.
-He thought he could improve his legs & walk again even though his doctors told him it was unlikely.
-During 1925-1928, he would spend 116 weeks away from home trying to fix his legs.
-He and Eleanor were living separate lives, and their children were being ignored and indulged.
-Teddy could outrun his depression demons, but FDR couldn't walk, so he was stuck with them.
-Franklin didn't want the public to know he was crippled.  Yet, it was the polio that gave him the gift of empathy.
-He bought Warm Springs, Georgia and used it as a place for polio patients to recover.
-On June 26, 1924 FDR gave the introduction for Al Smith who was running for president at Madison Square Garden.
-Al Smith persuaded Franklin to run for Governor of New York.  He did, and campaigned in all 62 counties, something no other candidate had ever done before.  Democrats lost big that year, but FDR won the governorship.
29 years earlier Teddy Roosevelt had promised the American people a "square deal".  Now, 11 years after polio seemed to have crushed his political hopes, FDR made a promise of his own, a "new deal".--The Roosevelts
-In 1932, FDR was the front runner for the Democratic nomination for president.  He won against 9 contenders.
-On election night, November 8, 1932 FDR won by 7 million votes.  He won 42 of 48 states, and the Democrats won a majority of seats in both houses of Congress.
The only thing we have to fear, is fear itself.--FDR
Eleanor Roosevelt:
-After finding refuge in work during the war, she refused to give it up after the war, even though her Mother-in-law wanted her too.
-She would always crave action liker her husband and her Uncle.
-In June of 1922, Nancy Cook (from the Women's Division of the state Democrat party), called and asked Eleanor to speak at a fundraising luncheon.  Cook and Marion Dickerman became good friends of Eleanor's.
-Eleanor began organizing the Democratic women of Duchess county.
-Louie Howe not only coached FDR, but also Eleanor and helped her with public speaking.
-She began her own career after FDR was struck with polio.
It is always disagreeable to take a stand, it is always easier to compromise.--Eleanor Roosevelt
-Franklin was proud of Eleanor having her own career.
-After FDR was elected Governor of New York, she toured hospitals and prisons on her husband's behalf and attended political functions.
-When FDR was elected president, she was happy for him, but she was troubled for herself.  She knew this would be the end of any personal life of her own.

Episode 1-Get Action (1858-1901)
Episode 2-In the Arena (1901-1910)  

Episode 3-The Fire of Life (1910-1919)

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