The death of President Franklin Roosevelt (4-12-45)

Truman becomes President in simple ceremonies

Oath is administered in Cabinet room by Chief Justice Harlan F. Stone

WASHINGTON (UP) – The gray-haired man with the gold-rimmed spectacles walked into the awesome confusion that was the White House and into the most momentous hour of his life.

He came in as Vice President Harry S. Truman and he walked out again as the 32nd President of the United States.

He stepped around reporters eager for more news of the death of Franklin D. Roosevelt. He walked past red-eyed secretaries and stenographers who couldn’t believe the news. He moved quickly through the glare of photographers’ flashlight bulbs.

He made his way into the apple-green Cabinet Room of the White House. Cabinet members were seated there, solemn-faced. Leaders of Congress were there, too. They stood in groups, talking quietly.

Harry S. Truman sat down in an overstuffed leather chair. It was understandable that he was not completely at ease. Then up stepped Chief Justice Harlan F. Stone of the United States.

The Vice President got to his feet. Someone gave him a Bible from President Roosevelt’s office.

He held it reverentially on his left palm. His right hand was on the cover. The clock on the mantlepiece pointed to 7:05 p.m. Three minutes later, the Chief Justice began administering the oath of office.

I, Harry Shippe Truman, do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States and will, to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.

The Chief Justice recited the oath from memory. The new President repeated the words after him, phrase by phrase.

But when he came to his name, he said, “Harry S. Truman.” He did not use the name “Shippe,” and persons who know him well said that was because he really has no middle name; that he was christened plain Harry Truman and adopted the letter “S” when he was grown up because it looked and sounded better.

It was 7:08 p.m. when Harry S. Truman became the 32nd President of the United States.

No Roosevelts present

Not a member of the Roosevelt family was present at the ceremony. When it was over, the official witnesses shook his hand, whispered words of courage and congratulations. There was no backslapping. There were no smiles.

Three reporters were present, representing the three press associations.

Mr. Truman was there too, a proud wife and mother who a few moments before had dabbed at tear-stained eyes with a crumpled handkerchief. Her hand held that of their 20-year-old daughter, Mary Margaret. Both stood in the background as the oath was administered. They were just spectators.

Wallace is there

One of the witnesses was the man who might have been in Mr. Truman’s place had the political fates been different – former Vice President Henry A. Wallace. Mr. Wallace, who will remain in President Truman’s Cabinet as Secretary of Commerce, was so shaken that Secretary of State Edward R. Stettinius had to help him from the room.

Mrs. Roosevelt was 11 blocks away at a “Thrift Club” meeting when Secretary Stephen T. Early telephoned and asked her to return to the White House as soon as possible.

Mr. Early and Vice Adm. Ross T. McIntire, the President’s physician, brought the tragic news to her sitting room.

The President “has slipped away,” they told her.

Mr. Early then telephoned Mr. Truman and asked him to come to the White House. Ten minutes later, he heard the news from Mrs. Roosevelt. She told him Mr. Roosevelt had “passed away.”

“What can I do?” he exclaimed.

“Tell us what we can do,” replied Mrs. Roosevelt. “Is there anything we can do to help you?”

Someone suggested that Mr. Truman summon the Cabinet.

He did.

Later, following the oath-taking, President Truman went home to his five-room apartment on Connecticut Avenue for a night’s rest.

Civilization’s hope –
Roosevelt’s last speech released

Plea for world to live together quoted

WASHINGTON (UP) – If Franklin D. Roosevelt had lived to address the Jefferson Day Dinner here tonight, he would have told his listeners that all of the peoples of the world must learn to live together in peace if civilization is to survive.

The last public address Mr. Roosevelt prepared was ready for delivery when he died. In it, he revealed his great concern for the pattern of the world’s future when hostilities end.

The nation, he said, does not intend to abandon its determination that there shall be no third world war.

Mr. Roosevelt wrote:

We seek peace – enduring peace.

More than an end to war, we want an end to the beginning of all wars – yes, an end to this brutal, inhuman and thoroughly impractical method of settling differences between governments.

But the mere conquest of our enemies is not enough.

Today we are faced with the pre-eminent fact that if civilization is to survive, we must cultivate the science of human relationships – the ability of all peoples, of all kinds, to live together and work together, in the same world, at peace.

The work ahead, Mr. Roosevelt wrote, is peace.

He wrote:

Today, as we move against the terrible scourge of war as we go forward to the greatest contribution that any generation of human beings can make in this world, the contribution of lasting peace, I ask you to keep up your faith.

The only limit to our realization of tomorrow will be our doubts of today. Let us move forward with strong and active faith.

The late President pointed to the lesson the nation learned in the time of Thomas Jefferson, another great American President his audience was to have gathered to honor. That lesson, he said, was that America could not avoid the consequences of attacks by the Barbary Coast Corsairs.

Recognizing the nearness of military victory and its significance on peace plans, Mr. Roosevelt wrote:

The once-powerful, malignant Nazi state is crumbling. The Japanese warlords are receiving, in their own homeland, the retribution for which they asked when they attacked Pearl Harbor.

We must go on to do all in our power to conquer the doubts and the fears, the ignorance and the greed, which made this horror possible.

Death of Roosevelt casts mourning pall over city

Schools dismissed – city offices shut – theaters, stores close Saturday – plants open
Friday, April 13, 1945

The Pittsburgh District joined the nation today in mourning the death of President Roosevelt.

City and parochial schools suspended all classes. County schools convened this morning, but were dismissed after “appropriate services.”

Duquesne University discontinued classes, while both the University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie Tech adjourned classes at noon today after memorial services.

The Retail Merchants’ Association announced this afternoon that the large department stores would be closed all day Saturday.

The East Liberty Chamber of Commerce announced late this afternoon that the large stores in that section of the city will follow the example set by the downtown merchants.

State liquor stores will remain closed all day at the order of Gov. Martin. Warner, Harris, Fulton and Loew’s theaters will be closed tomorrow as well as most of the independent “neighborhood” theaters.

Mayor Scully said he had been told by Louis Little, attorney for the Cafe Owners’ Association, that all cafés in the area have withdrawn their floor shows for tonight and tomorrow. The cafés will be closed during the time of the President’s funeral services tomorrow.

Members of the Allegheny County Retail Druggists’ Association will close their stores from 3:45 to 4:45 p.m. tomorrow.

In Pittsburgh, all City and County offices closed today, in addition to the Superior, Orphans’, Common Pleas and Criminal Courts. Federal Court adjourned shortly before noon. All courts will resume sessions Monday.

There was no cessation of activity in the humming war plants, for despite the President’s death, both the management and labor knew that the task of forging the weapons of war must go on.

Fourteen mines in this area were shut down as miners paid tribute to the President.

Scores of affairs scheduled for tonight and over the weekend were postponed or cancelled by clubs and other organizations. Nearly all churches planned memorial services.

Carnegie Library branches will close tomorrow afternoon during the funeral services. The main library in Schenley Park will remain open.

Collector of Internal Revenue Stanley Granger announced that the two Pittsburgh offices of his bureau in the Federal Building and 715 Penn Avenue and 15 branch offices will close at noon tomorrow instead of 5 p.m.

Truman proclaims mourning period

WASHINGTON (UP) – President Truman today proclaimed Saturday as a day of mourning and prayer throughout the United States in respect to the late Franklin D. Roosevelt.

The presidential proclamation was issued by Secretary of State Edward R. Stettinius. At the same time, by order of the President, Mr. Stettinius ordered that:

  • Flags to remain at half-mast on all public buildings of the United States for one month – until the close of Monday, May 14.

  • All executive departments and agencies of the government be closed tomorrow afternoon – the day of the funeral.

If you ever pray, pray for me, Truman pleads

WASHINGTON (UP) – President Harry S. Truman said to reporters in the Capitol today: “Boys, if you ever pray, pray for me now.”

The honest, earnest little Missourian left a meeting with Congressional leaders to shake hands with reporters he had known as Senator and Vice President.

“You boys of the press have been good to me,” he said.

When a reporter addressed him as “Mr. President,” he smiled wistfully, and said: “I wish you’d never had to call me that.”

President’s death numbs Pittsburghers

First report greeted with much skepticism
Friday, April 13, 1945

Sometimes, when you’re seriously Injured, it doesn’t hurt much at first – and that’s the way Pittsburgh reacted to the first news of the President’s death last night.

The news swept across the city like wildfire during the dinner hour. Some heard it on their way home from work, and others as they were getting an early start for an evening’s entertainment.

Finally realize it

Most were incredulous, “Why, he hadn’t even been sick!” they exclaimed. But it shortly became apparent that the report was all too true.

Not knowing what else to do, men and women continued with what they were doing. Along the streets, it wasn’t apparent that a world-shaking event had taken place.

Only in the privacy of homes were tears allowed to flow.

Talk gravely of tragedy

Downtown, in hotel lobbies and on street corners, small groups of men talked gravely about what the tragedy meant to the country. The name Truman seemed to be on every tongue.

From one of these groups came the words: “It was almost like Lincoln’s death. He saw his work practically completed.”

The parking lot attendant, bringing out your car, murmured, “Didja hear about the President dying? Too bad!”

The girl at the cigar counter told customers, excitedly, “I liked to have dropped when I heard the news.”

Talk of new President

In the bustling lobby of Hotel William Penn, men gathered in groups to discuss the tragic news. Already their thoughts were turning to the new president,

“What kind of a President do you think Truman will make?” … “They should yank Stettinius out of the Secretary of State and make him President” … “Who becomes Vice President – Stettinius?” … “Nah! The Senate’ll elect him” … “We won’t have a Vice President for four years” … “The President pro tem of the Senate will serve as Vice President.”

Endless arguing, speculation, conjecturing.

Some didn’t relieve news

There was shocked disbelief that Franklin D. Roosevelt was dead.

On the street… “When did it happen?” … “One o’clock in the afternoon” … “No, I heard it was 1:35” … “No, you’re both wrong, it was 3:35.”

A man made a hasty call to his wife to break the news.

“Whatya doin’ – pullin’ one of your lousy jokes?”

Judge reads tribute

More than 650 persons packed into the Wilham Penn ballroom stood in silence while Judge Alexander Cooper read the lines penned by Walt Whitman after the death of Abraham Lincoln:

The ship is anchor’d safe and sound, its voyage closed and done,
From fearful trip the victor ship comes in with object won;
Exult O shores, and ring O bells!
But I with mournful tread,
Walk the deck my Captain lies,
Fallen cold and dead.

The 650 attended the annual dinner of the Allegheny County Chapter, Pennsylvania Motor Truck Association. A year ago at the same organization’s dinner the apeaker was the then Sen. Harry S. Truman, now President of the United States.

As the evening wore on, the full import of the tragedy began to dawn on everyone. Telephone lines were jammed with calls made to talk it over, or to newspaper offices and other centers of information.

Questions fly fast

“Who will become Vice President?” they asked, and “How long should flags be kept at half-staff?” and “Should I close my place of business?”

The thing had been so unexpected that few restaurants, taverns and places of amusement were closed last night. Hours after the first word was received, there were few outward signs of mourning in the city.

In the hearts and minds of the City’s residents, however, you knew that memorial services were being conducted for this man who had been their national leader through a dozen troubled years.

His monument

The teeming Hill District, where thousands have benefited from the reforms Mr. Roosevelt sponsored, was quieter than usual. Folks sat on their doorsteps and talked about the thing that had happened.

One elderly man gazed thoughtfully at the lighted buildings of the Terrace Village housing project and observed – “That will be his monument.”

Truman decides to hold ‘Frisco parley as planned

President urges world security organization be erected as memorial to Roosevelt

WASHINGTON (UP) – Secretary of State Edward R. Stettinius Jr. today called in the British, Russian and Chinese ambassadors to confirm to them President Truman’s decision that the San Francisco conference on world security will be held as scheduled April 25.

Mr. Stettinius was expected to express officially to the representatives President Truman’s intention that the San Francisco structure shall be erected, as planned, as a memorial to Franklin D. Roosevelt.

British Ambassador Earl Halifax, Soviet Ambassador Andrei A. Gromyko, and Chinese Ambassador Wei Tao-ming were to meet with Mr. Stettinius at noon. They constitute the preliminary steering committee for the meeting.

To affirm policy

The U.S. Secretary of State, it was believed, will convey to them Mr. Truman’s intention that the San Francisco gathering shall constitute an immediate affirmation of the continuity of U.S. foreign policy and of his support of the peace structure of which Mr. Roosevelt was one of the major architects.

His great collaborators – Premier Joseph Stalin and Prime Minister Winston Churchill – described him on his death as the world leader in the cause of ensuring security for the whole world.

Mr. Roosevelt, who had done so much to prepare the United States this time to take its proper place in the new organization and to avoid the mistakes of 1920, had planned to address the opening session at San Francisco.

His sudden death will not delay the conference. His name and his thoughts still will dominate the opening meeting. Representatives of the United Nations vowed within hours of his death that the memory of his vision, courage, statesmanship and leadership would inspire them in the task of building world peace.

Had two objectives

Mr. Roosevelt devoted the last years of his life to two great objectives: (1) Winning the ears; (2) Building the foundation for an international accord that would give some assurance of lasting peace.

Accomplishment of the first objective was in sight before he died. The crucial test for the second one begins – as scheduled – 12 days from today in San Francisco.

The first question which arose after the shock of Mr. Roosevelt’s death had passed was: “Will the conference go on.”

First Truman decision

It was the first major decision President Truman had to make. And less than an hour after he had taken the presidential oath, he made it, Mr. Stettinius announced: “With the authority of President Truman, I wish to announce that the San Francisco conference will open on April 25 as planned.”

One high official explained it this way: “Just as the war must go on, so must the planning to prevent another one.”

The sentiment of those who will represent the United States at the conference, as well as the representatives of the other United Nations, was: “Carry on.”

Trumans await convenience of Mrs. Roosevelt

WASHINGTON (UP) – It’s not known just when the Truman family will move into the White House. But President Harry S. Truman went to work this morning in the mansion’s executive wing where the business of the nation’s Chief Executive is carried on.

Occupation of the White House living quarters by President and Mrs. Truman and their 20-year-old daughter, Mary Margaret, will await the convenience of Mrs. Roosevelt. It will take time to move out the Roosevelt family’s personal possessions.

Mrs. Roosevelt promised to give the new First Lady every possible assistance in becoming adjusted to her duties in the White House. Her 12 years’ experience should stand Mrs. Truman in good stead.

Stalin lauds Roosevelt as peace pioneer

Russians grieved – news brings tears

MOSCOW (UP) – Marshal Joseph Stalin hailed President Roosevelt in death today as “a great politician of world significance and a pioneer in the organization of peace and security after the war.”

Russians hearing the first word of Mr. Roosevelt’s death were stunned and deeply grieved. Their reaction was believed representative of the masses, as well as their highest leaders.

The Russians never forgot the fact that Mr. Roosevelt was the first President to recognize the Soviet regime.

Mr. Roosevelt’s and Marshal Stalin’s personalities clicked at the Tehran and Yalta conferences. They understood one another perfectly, parted genuine friends, and kept up extensive cable correspondence.

Won hearts of Russians

Once between sessions at Yalta, the two with an interpreter alone sat on a beach facing the Black Sea waves, chatting about everything but politics. Few if any foreign dignitaries could have had a similar session with Marshal Stalin.

Mr. Roosevelt’s warmth and simple manner won the hearts of every Russian on his personal staff at Yalta. His chambermaid, a 60-year-old peasant woman named Fenya who works on the third floor of the Hotel Metropole here, said the President was “such a dear, fine. sympathetic man.”

Fenya wept when she heard of Mr. Roosevelt’s death, as did several others of the Metropole staff who served the President.

Sends messages

Marshal Stalin’s tribute to Mr. Roosevelt was expressed in messages he sent to Mrs. Roosevelt and President Truman. That to Mrs. Roosevelt said:

Please accept my sincere condolence on the occasion of the death of your husband, and my expression of my sincere sympathy in your great sorrow.

The Soviet people highly valued President Roosevelt as a great organizer of the struggle of freedom-loving nations against the common enemy and a leader in the cause of insuring security for the whole world.

‘A great politician’

To President Truman, he messaged:

On behalf of the Soviet government and myself personally, I want to express profound condolence to the Government of the United States of America on the occasion of the premature death of President Roosevelt.

The American people and the United Nations have lost, in Franklin Roosevelt, a great politician of world significance and a pioneer in the organization of peace and security after the war.

The government of the Soviet Union expresses its sincere sympathy for the American people in their great loss, and their conviction that policy of friendship between the great powers who have shouldered the main burden of war against the common enemy will continue to develop in the future.

Mrs. Truman stunned by news of presidency

Roosevelt successor phones wife at 5-room apartment

First Lady keeps ‘Midwest humor’ despite fame

By Scripps-Howard Service

WASHINGTON – “In spite of all that has come to us, thank God I still have my Middle West sense of humor.”

It would be difficult to say whether that is a characteristic sentiment of new First Lady, Mrs. Harry Truman. Yet it is the one remark which friends remember having heard her make time and again since January 20 when her husband became Vice President.

Mrs. Truman has not been a whooper-upper for Harry Truman, but a steady, appreciated and aided the ambitions of her husband. She never worries about herself. But she does jeep a weather eye on the man who yesterday was sworn in as President.

She’s of medium height, more than medium waistline, nicely dressed. Her greying hair is soberly parted, waved and curled. She’s rural America come to Washington.

WASHINGTON (UP) – Harry S. Truman himself informed his wife of the fateful event which made him President of the United States.

Mrs. Truman received a telephone call from her husband late yesterday while she was in their unassuming five-room Connecticut Avenue apartment which they have occupied for the last four years.

Mrs. Truman, stunned, immediately called a friend, Mrs. Oscar J. Ricketts, manager of the apartment house, and asked her to come up.

Mrs. Ricketts said she found the new First Lady in tears, overcome and stunned.

Leave by back door

A few minutes later, Mrs. Truman, with her 20-year-old-daughter, Mary Margaret, left the apartment house by the back door in a White House limousine which took them to their future home.

There they witnessed the simple ceremony which made Harry S, Truman the new President. The new President, his wife and daughter returned to their apartment at 7:30 p.m.

They entered by a back door as Secret Service men held back a small crowd of curious neighbors gathered around the front entrance of the apartment house.

Apartment guarded

A quad of about a dozen Secret Service men were stationed about the apartment house. They permitted no one to disturb the family and did not permit the delivery of any telegrams. All phone calls were refused.

Mrs. Truman, trim, gray-haired, and Mary Margaret, slender, with long blond hair, wore simple brown suits.

“We’ll miss them,” Mrs. Ricketts observed pensively. “They just don’t come any nicer or any finer. I never saw a family with more I never saw a family with more affection for each other. It’s rather outstanding.”

Mrs. Ricketts was unable to recall any remarks that Mrs. Truman made before she departed for the White House.

Busy answering phone

“I was too busy answering the telephone and everything was so strange,” she said. “I just can’t remember.”

Margaret, she said, displayed extreme emotion. Tears welled in her eyes.

Soon after the news reached them, Mrs. Truman’s next-door neighbor and friend, Mrs. Leonard Davis, wife of Maj. Gen. Davis who is now serving in Europe, arrived at the Truman apartment.

Mrs. Ricketts recalled that Mrs. Truman affectionately calls her husband “Boss."

Formerly taught school

The new First Lady, a one-time schoolteacher of Independence, Missouri, first skyrocketed to national prominence at last July’s Democratic National Convention in Chicago when her husband was selected as Franklin D. Roosevelt’s fourth-term running mate.

Meeting reporters in numbers for the first time in her life, she admitted frankly that she was thrilled by it all – and just as frankly admitted that she would be glad when the excitement was over and she could get back to her home in Independence.

The Trumans have no servants and Mrs. Truman does all the housework herself. She also prepares the family’s two meals a day, except on those rare occasions when the Trumans’ presence is required at social functions.

Helped her husband

In the years when her husband was chairman of the well-known Senate War Investigating Committee, she had an almost full-time job helping him with details of his investigation work. Most of her work was done at home but, on occasion, she worked in his office at the Capitol.

The everyday touch which the new First Lady has in abundance was demonstrated the day Mr. Roosevelt was sworn in for his fourth term and Mr. Truman took the oath as Vice President.

Her one complaint after a grueling day of standing for hours shaking hands with the White House guests was that her feet hurt.

Given a tip

Her predecessor gave her a tip that day for which she probably will be eternally grateful.

“If you will relax your knees, you will not become so tired from standing for long periods,” Mrs. Roosevelt is said to have told her. “I have learned to do it since I came to live her.”

Washington bets Truman will oust some top men

Friends say new President, given tough job, insists on capable assistants
By Charles T. Lucey, Scripps-Howard staff writer

WASHINGTON – Harry S. Truman is an everyday American who ploughed a straight furrow as a Missouri farm boy and who, as President, is expected to do the same.

Extreme views on both sides can be heard about him today. Truth, as usual, lay somewhere between.

No one knows better than Harry Truman how sharp is the contrast between him and the Franklin Roosevelt he succeeded last night.

He has followed the President, but he is no New Dealer. He has been beholden to bosses, but he has been able to say no to them. He is a man adroit in compromise who can work well with Republicans as with Democrats.

Gets into hot water

And he is a rather frank-spoken man whose bluntness more than once has got him into hot water.

Harry Truman came to the Senate in 1934 with advice from Boss Tom Pendergast to work hard, keep his mouth shut until he knew the ropes, and answer his mail. It wasn’t until 1937 that he did anything that put him in the national spotlight, and that was as vice-chairman of a committee investigating the railroads.

When it came to digging into the Missouri Pacific, names of politicians and others back in Missouri began to bob up. Telegrams and telephone calls poured in on Sen. Truman asking him to ease up on that home-state stuff.

Brushed aside ‘heat’

Boss Pendergast was one of those who turned on the heat. But Mr. Truman told his committee investigators: “I don’t want you to ease up on anything. Treat this investigation just as you do all the others.”

As senator, Mr. Truman never apologized for Boss Pendergast and when the old man died a few months ago he went to Kansas City to his funeral. Pendergast had been his friend and there was still loyalty there, that was all.

Harry Truman has a certain gentleness about him, but back of this is the shrewdness which, despite what some people have rated only average ability, has carried him to political success.

Best man sought

When he became chairman of the Senate war investigating body that came to be called the Truman Committee, he went to his friend, Bob Jackson, then Attorney General, and asked him for the best man he had to run an investigation. The Attorney General gave him Hugh Fulton, and other able investigators were found.

Friends cite this to show that, given a job, Mr. Truman tries to surround himself with able people.

That’s why the betting today is there will be plenty of changes at the top of the government’s executive branch – in the Cabinet and in the White House coterie.

Opposed nomination

Harry Truman didn’t want the Vice Presidency when it came to him last year. He told friends he would be happy to spend the rest of his life in the Senate and, a man of modest means, he was afraid he couldn’t afford the fanfare that would have to go with it.

At the Chicago convention, he thought his biggest role would be to nominate James F. Byrnes for the Vice Presidency. Mr. Byrnes had asked him to do so and he had agreed.

But when Sidney Hillman’s boys thumbs-downed Mr. Byrnes, when the city bosses and National Chairman Robert Hannegan bucked Henry Wallace and when Mr. Roosevelt finally gave the Senator his blessing, Mr. Truman went in fighting.

Genial fellow

“I’m in this now,” he said, “and I’m staying in it until I win.”

On the campaign train he was a genial fellow who played poker and had a drink with the newspapermen but who always knocked off no later than 11:30 p.m., to be up early for the back-platform stops of early morning.

At Uvalde, Texas, he got out on the platform and he and Jack Garner threw their arms around each other. Friends say he likes Cactus Jack and that he is also closer to Jesse Jones and others on the conservative side of the New Deal Party than to the Harry Hopkins’ New Dealers. In the Senate, his closest crony is Carl Hatch (D-New Mexico).

What’s New Deal’s fate?

A big question asked here today was: Is the New Deal dead? Those who looked at Mr. Truman’s many conservative friends said yes; those who looked at his voting record said no. It has been strongly pro-Roosevelt for 10 years.

Harry Truman’s biggest ambition, in recent months, has been to put everything he could into the job of getting acceptance of the post-war international treaties, including Bretton Woods and the one to come out of San Francisco. He was working among Republicans as well as Democrats.

He’s good at that, too. He had Republicans on the Senate War Investigating Committee – and they didn’t file even one minority report.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt – Story of his life

Became one of world’s leaders despite his physical handicaps


Born: January 30, 1882, in Hyde Park, New York.

1891: Traveled to Germany, made bicycle tour of Black Forest.

Education: Matriculated at Groton School in 1896. Matriculated at Harvard University in 1900. Graduated from Harvard in 1904. Graduated from Columbia n 1907.

Married: Anna Eleanor Roosevelt, a fifth cousin and niece of President Theodore Roosevelt, on March 17, 1905; matriculated at Columbia University Law School.

1907: Joined legal firm of Carter, Ledyard & Milburn.

1910: Formed own law partnership of Marvin, Hooker and Roosevelt,

1911: Elected to New York State Senate.

1912: Aided presidential campaign of Woodrow Wilson.

1913: Appointed Assistant Secretary of the Navy under President Wilson.

1917: Given charge of transporting all U.S. troops to France in World War I.

1918: Went to France on U.S. destroyer to supervise naval operations from abroad.

1920: Nominated for vice presidency as running mate for James Cox; was defeated; joined Fidelity and Deposit Company of Maryland as vice president in charge of New York office.

1921: Stricken with infantile paralysis while vacationing at Campobello Island in North Atlantic.

1924: Took part in Democratic National Convention in New York, nominating Alfred E. Smith for presidency from wheelchair; went to Warm Springs, Georgia, when he heard of infantile paralysis cures there.

1928: Took part in Democratic National Convention at Houston, struggling to platform on crutches to again nominate Alfred E. Smith for the presidency; ran for governorship of New York with Mr. Smith’s support and was elected while Mr. Smith lost to Herbert Hoover in the presidential race.

1930: Reelected New York Governor.

1932: Announced candidacy for Democratic nomination for presidency; was nominated at convention in Chicago after split with Al Smith; conducted campaign tour throughout country; defeated Mr. Hoover.

1933: Escaped assassination at Miami, Florida, on February 15; was inaugurated as President March 4 in midst of greatest financial panic in history; brought about repeal of prohibition law, recognition of Russia, and reforms in nation’s banking structure; took nation temporarily off gold standard; established huge funds with which to subsidize employment; established “codes of fair competition” for hundreds of industries under the National Industrial Recovery Act.

1934: Called one of the greatest Presidents United States has ever had, on anniversary of inauguration.

1936: Reelected by defeating Alfred M. Landon.

1939: Appealed to world leaders for maintenance of peace.

1940: Elected to third term, defeating Wendell Willkie.

1941: Framed Atlantic Charter with Prime Minister Winston Churchill; Japanese made their sneak attack on Pearl Harbor.

1943: Casablanca and “unconditional surrender” conference.

1944: Toured U.S. bases in Hawaii and Alaska; elected to fourth term, defeating Thomas E. Dewey.

1945: Conferred with Mr. Churchill and Marshal Stalin.

Died: April 12, 1945, in Warm Springs, Georgia, of cerebral hemorrhage.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt surmounted a crippling malady and early political defeat to become President of the United States four times and one of the world’s most powerful leaders in peace and war.

The poor and depression-weary knew him as their provider, the champion of “the forgotten man.” But many other Americans regarded him as a hated Robin Hood who pillaged their fortunes, through taxes and restraints on business, to perpetuate himself in office.

His name became a household word all over the earth and during World War II, it was a symbol of American might and generosity.

Probably no other administration was so marked as his by political cleavages which cut frequently across party lines. It was not unusual for him to be opposed by the more conservative members of his own party while some of the more liberal Republicans were supporting him.

Broke precedent

Overwhelmingly defeated for Vice President in 1920, Mr. Roosevelt eventually became the first President to serve more than two terms.

When he ran for his third term, the reaction from his political foes was deafening. The opposition was even more vitriolic when he sought a fourth term. But he sailed into both with winning majorities.

Crippled by infantile paralysis in 1924, he spurned invalidism, projected his personality into virtually every aspect of national life, and was the most widely traveled Chief Executive the country ever had.

Although he could walk only with assistance, and spent much of his time in a wheelchair, he was one of the most dramatic men ever to enter the White House.

Mr. Roosevelt delighted in smashing precedents. He loved to surprise the people by turning up unexpectedly in strange parts of the world. He thrived on political battles seeming to enjoy them more and more as he grew older.

He was commander-in-chief of the largest armed force the United States ever mobilized which participated in the world’s greatest war.

More than any predecessor he brought the federal government into the life of every citizen. He was responsible for far-reaching social and economic reforms, and his administration spent billions where administrations before his spent in millions or even thousands.

Public debt soars

From July 1, 1933, the start of the first fiscal year after he was inaugurated, through April 5, 1944, when World War II was approaching a climax, the federal government spent $248 billion – more than twice the total of $112,300,900,000 spent by all previous administrations.

From July 1, 1933, to yesterday, the day of his death, the public debt soared from $22,538,672,560 to $235,232,077,362.

Mr. Roosevelt was protagonist in one domestic drama after another – the bank holiday, NRA, Social Security and the WPA. But the excitement and impact of these efforts to cope with stifling economic depression in the 1930s, were paled by the verve of his war leadership – dashing trips to Cairo, Tehran and Casablanca, and conferences with other world leaders almost in the shadow of enemy planes and guns.

He was born on January 30, 1882, and grew up on a 1,000-acre family estate overlooking the Hudson at Hyde Park, New York.

Joining the Democratic Party, he was elected to the New York Senate in 1910 and was reelected in 1912. He early espoused Woodrow Wilson and campaigned for his nomination at the Democratic National Convention in Baltimore in 1912. When Wilson was elected, he made young Roosevelt Assistant Secretary of the Navy.

Backed League of Nations

After World War I, he fought vigorously for the League of Nations. Though only 38, the 1920 Democratic convention picked him as James M. Cox’s vice-presidential running mate. He made more than 800 campaign speeches but he and Mr. Cox were defeated by the Republican Harding-Coolidge ticket and he began practicing law.

Four years later, while swimming at Campo Bello, Maine, during a summer vacation, he became infected with infantile paralysis.

Tall, handsome, inexhaustibly energetic, still youthful, he was paralyzed from the waist down.

For four agonizing years, he fought his affliction, supported loyally by his wife and friends, and ultimately won out. His legs were withered, but his spirit and energy flamed anew.

Just as he won this victory in 1928, the late Alfred E. Smith, whom Mr. Roosevelt had helped into the New York governorship in 1920, called him back into politics.

Mr. Roosevelt ran for governor to bolster Mr. Smith’s campaign as the Democratic candidate for President against the Republican Herbert Hoover. Mr. Smith lost New York State and the nation, but Mr. Roosevelt won the governorship by 25,000 votes. In 1930, he was reelected by 725,000 votes. With a record like that, he was the strongest candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination in 1932.

Before the 1932 convention, the Roosevelt-Smith friendship cooled Mr. Smith, wanting the nomination again, made a futile attempt to “stop” his erstwhile protégé and disciple. In winning the nomination, Mr. Roosevelt was aided by a new political friend, James A. Farley, who later was to break with him on the third-term issue.

Flew to Chicago

Mr. Roosevelt started breaking precedents even before he became President. To show the country that his affliction could not immobilize him, he flew to Chicago to accept the nomination. That was the eve of his historic tenure in the White House.

He was never happier than when breaking a precedent. He was the first to win a third term. He was the first President to leave the country in wartime. He was the first President to fly. He roamed the world by train, battleship, auto and airplane.

In peace and in war, Mr. Roosevelt was a man of action and battle. Most of his major domestic reforms required drive to put them across and he relished his role as an active war leader, which required dangerous trips across oceans and continents to map strategy firsthand with British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, Soviet Premier Joseph Stalin and Chinese Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek.

Each of Mr. Roosevelt’s terms was filled with drama. His first, starting in 1933, saw his fight for the “forgotten man” and it succeeded to a great extent in bringing the nation out of a deadening economic depression.

Supreme Court battle

His second term began with the Supreme Court battle in 1937 – in which he tried unsuccessfully to increase the membership of the court after it had declared several New Deal laws unconstitutional. Less than a year after he started his third term in 1941, the nation was plunged into war.

The final two years of his second term were the basic period of transition from peace to war.

In 1939 and 1940, menacing and spreading wars in Europe and Asia forced him to subordinate the social objectives of the New Deal to a simultaneous effort to maintain American neutrality, prepare for the eventuality of war, and help the peaceable nations that had already been set upon by the aggressors – Germany, Italy and Japan.

The Germans went into Poland in the fall of 1939 after the President had made fruitless appeals to Germany and Italy “to find a peaceful and constructive solution of existing controversies.”

Great Britain and France declared war September 3, 1939, and a titanic world struggle was on. France fell and the Germans and Italians took over most of Europe by force of arms.

The isolationists in this country charged Mr. Roosevelt was leading the country into the war by sending aid to Britain. It was 1940 – and his supporters said it was no time to change leadership and he was elected to his third term, defeating Wendell L. Willkie, the Republican nominee, by a popular vote of 27,243,466 to 22,304,755.

First peacetime draft

In the spring of 1940, he had enacted the nation’s first peacetime conscription act, and in October, millions registered with thousands of local draft boards throughout the country.

After the election, Mr. Roosevelt traded 50 World War I destroyers to Great Britain, which urgently needed them in the Battle of the Atlantic against German U-boats, for 99-year leases on British-owned sites for defensive military bases in the Western Hemisphere.

In the spring of 1941, Congress authorized the administration-proposed Lend-Lease program which, before this country was brought into the war, helped to keep Great Britain and Russia fighting effectively against a then-superior Axis enemy.

This first year of Mr. Roosevelt’s third term was spent largely in marshaling American production and building up the Army and Navy. It was in this “darkness-before-dawn” era when the government was preparing for war while trying to stay out of it, that Mr. Roosevelt created the largest federal establishment in history.

Industrial leaders were drafted to head up a gigantic producing program. The President began delegating his powers so as to have more freedom to plot this country’s international course.

Mr. Roosevelt held his Atlantic Charter conference with Mr. Churchill off the coast of Newfoundland in August 1941.

Eight-point charter

On the British battleship HMS Prince of Wales and the American cruiser USS Augusta, Mr. Roosevelt, Mr. Churchill and their ranking staff chiefs composed the brief Charter, an eight-point declaration of policy which was the foundation for the organization of the United Nations.

The “day of infamy” that plunged the United States into war came on December 7, 1941, when the Japanese attacked Pear Harbor. Germany and Italy then joined Japan in openly declaring war against the United States.

The President asked and received war declarations from Congress against Japan, Germany and Italy within 48 hours.

Mr. Churchill rushed to Washington, arriving on December 22, and remaining until mid-January. The United Nations declaration was drafted and signed.

Mr. Churchill made another trip to Washington in June 1942, shortly after Mr. Roosevelt had received Soviet Foreign Commissar V. M. Molotov in the White House.

The Anglo-American staff chiefs reported that a lowland European invasion was impractical for the time being, and the decision was made to go into North Africa.

The African invasion began in November 1942, and shortly after the New Year, Mr. Roosevelt flew to Casablanca, which was then within fighter plane range of the Germans, to meet again with Mr. Churchill. From that meeting came the Roosevelt-Churchill pledge to accept nothing but the unconditional surrender of the Axis.

Met again in Quebec

At Casablanca, the High Command of the American and British armed forces decided to intensify the Mediterranean offensive. Allied armies took Sicily, invaded Italy, and during the summer of 1943, Italy surrendered.

Mr. Roosevelt and Mr. Churchill got together again in August 1943 in Quebec and later in Washington, and made plans to meet again in Cario and Tehran with Premier Stalin and Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek.

From those four-power conferences held during November and December came the decision to invade Western Europe in the spring of 1944 and Dwight D. Eisenhower, the American who commanded the invasion of French Africa, was named Allied commander-in-chief.

Mr. Roosevelt came home and found the Congress, which had become more Republican in the midterm election, in growing revolt against his domestic policies. There were many complaints against restrictions on wages and prices. The President twice vetoed attempts by Congress to abolish anti-inflation food subsidies.

The demand of the armed services for more than 11 million men by mid-1944 complicated an already existing manpower problem and mounting government expenditures pointed to the pressing need for new revenue.

Battle over tax veto

Congress was reluctant to impose new taxes. Early in 1944, objecting to the veto of a tax bill which the administration considered insufficient, Senate Majority Leader Alben W. Barkley, one of his oldest friends, resigned as Democratic leader of the Senate and was promptly reelected by his colleagues.

Congress as promptly enacted the tax measure over the veto. But later, Mr. Barkley supported the President for a fourth term.

Mr. Roosevelt fell ill in late 1943 just after he got back from Tehran. Physically and mentally tired, he was an easy victim for colds and sinus and bronchial irritations which continued to affect him during the first months of 1944.

His doctor, Vice Adm. Ross T. McIntire, in late March 1944, put him through a painstaking physical examination and wrote this prescription: sun, salt air, and complete rest.

The prescription was filled at Hobcaw Barony, Bernard M. Baruch’s 23,000-acre South Carolina estate, from April 9 to May 7.

When he came back to Washington, before him lay his big personal decision for 1944: Whether to seek reelection.

He followed his pre-third term policy of saying nothing. But enough Democratic convention delegates were already pledged to assure his nomination.

Invasion of France

Before the 1944 political season blossomed fully, the country forgot, for a time at least, about forthcoming political conventions and concentrated on the invasion of France which began June 6.

The President continued to play his game of saying nothing – even after the Republicans gave their presidential nomination to Gov. Thomas E. Dewey of New York, late in June.

Finally, about a week before the Democratic convention in July, Mr. Roosevelt informed Robert E. Hannegan, the national Democratic chairman, that he would accept nomination for a fourth term, but would not run for office “in the usual partisan, political sense.”

He accepted the nomination July 20 in a radio speech from the U.S. Marine base at San Diego, telling the nation that while he would not campaign in “the usual sense,” he would “feel free to report to the people the facts about matters of concern to them and especially to correct any misrepresentations.”

Then the President, always a great showman, emphasized his role as wartime Commander-in-Chief by sailing out into the Pacific, and conferring with Gen. Douglas MacArthur, Adm. Chester W. Nimitz and other Pacific war leaders at Pearl Harbor.

Visited Aleutian Islands

He came home via the Aleutian Islands and a few minutes after arriving at Bremerton, Washington, reported to the people by radio, stressing the need for a fence of island bases around Japan to prevent aggression until the Japanese proved their ability to live as a neighbor to other nations.

Mr. Roosevelt then went back to Washington and watched Mr. Dewey build his campaign. Mr. Dewey made a long swing from the East to the West Coast and back again, speaking frequently.

But the President bided his time. At last, on September 23, he opened his campaign with an avowedly political speech in which he accused the Republicans of irresponsibility, fraud, “callous and brazen” falsehoods and an “ostrich” attitude in foreign affairs.

Mr. Roosevelt waited until late October, however, to campaign in earnest. Then he made rapid swings through New York, Philadelphia, Chicago and Boston. He stood on his record, particularly the war achievement, and on November 7, was reelected by approximately 25,500,000 popular votes to 23,000,000 for Mr. Dewey. His electoral vote margin was a landslide – 432 to 99.

Favored post-war drill

Shortly after his reelection, the President went to Warm Springs, Georgia, for a long rest, returning to Washington just before Christmas. When the new Congress opened, he called for work-or-fight legislation to draw all the manpower possible into the war effort, and asked for post-war universal military training.

His fourth term inauguration, a solemn affair, was held on the South Portico of the White House. Some 8,000 carefully-selected guests were allowed to witness the ceremony from the lawn.

And only a matter of hours later, the President asked Secretary of Commerce Jesse H. Jones to step aside so that Henry A. Wallace, the Vice President Mr. Roosevelt dumped overboard at the Democratic convention in favor of Missouri’s Sen. Harry S. Truman, could have a Cabinet post.

As Congress was thrown into a broiling argument over the Wallace nomination, the President left town under cover of heavy secrecy and sped across the world for another meeting with Mr. Churchill and Marshal Stalin.

This conference was held at Yalta in the Crimea. It proposed a post-war boundary and government for Poland, devised a system for voting to keep future peace and made plans for a world security conference in San Francisco, opening April 25. Both the Polish government and boundary question and the number of votes given the larger nations provoked much controversy.

Domestic plan outlined

Mr. Roosevelt himself was the author of one of the best summations of his domestic objectives. It was his reply to the question of a visiting Canadian editor at a press conference in 1935. Voiced spontaneously, it represented the President’s attitude while in office.

Mr. Roosevelt said:

The social objective, I should say, remains just what it was, which is to do what any honest government or any country would do; to try to increase the security and the happiness of a larger number of people in all occupations of life and in all parts of the country; to give them more of the good things of life; to give them a greater distribution not only of wealth in the narrow terms, but of wealth in the wider terms; to give them places to go in the summertime – recreation; to give them assurance that they are not going to starve in their old age; to give honest business a chance to go ahead and make a reasonable profit, and to give everyone a chance to earn a living.

The three R’s of his administration were recovery, relief and reform.

When he rode up Pennsylvania Avenue March 4, 1933, to take office, the emphasis was on recovery from a depression that had closed virtually every bank and thrown millions out of work.

Food riots recalled

Aid for the unemployed was a paramount demand. Food riots had occurred. Mob law threatened even judges in some rural communities.

Then, when the depression ills had been cured or alleviated, reform became the major consideration.

Banks, public utilities, stock and commodity exchanges – all were put under government regulation. Corporations were forced to pay higher taxes along with wealthy individuals.

Business firms and workers jointly contributed to set up a program of social security through old-age pensions, unemployment insurance and aid to mothers, children and cripples.

Action was a keynote of all the years Mr. Roosevelt served as President. Yet strange as it seemed afterward, his opponents in his campaign for his first term said he was a weak man.

One writer said Candidate Roosevelt was “an amiable man with many philanthropic impulses, but he is not the dangerous enemy of anything. He is too eager to please.”

But he had no sooner taken the oath of office, when he called Congress into special session for what were to be the famous “100 days.” He took the United States off the gold standard and eventually devaluated the dollar to approximately 60 cents of its former worth.

Blue Eagles flown

With Secretary of the Treasury William Woodin, a businessman drafted into the Cabinet, he charted the reopening of national banks.

The Agricultural Adjustment Administration with power to curtail crops was authorized by Congress in a sweeping grant of power. The National Recovery Administration was established and soon Blue Eagles were in the windows of almost every business concern in America.

The Public Works Administration and the Federal Emergency Relief Administration came into being to care for the needy.

The Tennessee Valley Authority, fathered by Sen. George Norris (D-Nebraska), became a yardstick for measuring power production costs.

Emergency legislation gave Mr. Roosevelt vast powers, but he liked to consider himself a partner of the people in pulling the nation up by its bootstraps.

In the forefront of all this activity was a smiling, gay President. His personal charm was magnetic and his warm, friendly voice was known to millions through his radio personality, considered the best in the country. He frequently reported to the people in “fireside chats” from the White House.

Jobs found by millions

Business improved and some of the millions of unemployed found jobs. Thus, the need for national unity gradually lessened and criticism of the New Deal began to be heard.

Both the AAA and the NRA were attacked as representing regimentation.

Relief costs were too high, it was said. There were court tests of the constitutionality of the NRA and AAA. Gen. Hugh Johnson, administrator of the NRA, was assailed.

On May 27, 1935, the Supreme Court held NRA unconstitutional because it carried what it considered unwarranted grant of power to the Chief Executive. Mr. Roosevelt was forced by the decision to retire from his efforts to shorten working hours, increase wages and create new jobs for the time being.

But he finally achieved his goal with the Wage-Hour Act which went into effect in October 1938 and stood up under a Supreme Court test.

The President had no intention of retreating in the face of attacks through the courts. He made that known in his famous “horse and buggy” comment shortly after the NRA decision. He said new judicial concepts were needed to meet modern economic and social conditions.

Coal NRA set up

After a bitter contest with big business on one side and the administration on the other, Congress enacted the Utility Holding Company Act with its so-called “death sentence” provisions to prevent pyramiding control by minority stockholders.

In supporting the Guffey Coal Bill to reestablish a little NRA for the coalmining industry, Mr. Roosevelt again served notice that he would not retreat, either under the attacks of big business or of the Supreme Court.

On January 6, 1936, the Supreme Court threw out the AAA’s compulsory crop control provisions as unconstitutional. These sections were the keystone of the New Deal’s program to rehabilitate agriculture. Later, the processing taxes which had supplied the financial lifeblood, were also declared invalid.

Mr. Roosevelt was renominated without opposition for his second term in 1936 and in his acceptance speech, he said: “I accept the commission you have tendered me. I join with you. I am enlisted for the duration of the war.”

His opponent was Alfred M. Landon of Kansas and Mr. Roosevelt’s popular vote majority was approximately 11,000,000. Mr. Landon carried only Maine and Vermont, a total of eight electoral votes, the fewest for a major party candidate since William Howard Taft in 1912.

Went to Buenos Aires

The President left on November 18, 1936, for Buenos Aires and attended the opening of the Inter-American Peace Conference. He returned December 15 and became the first President to take office under the Norris constitutional amendment eliminating the lame duck session of Congress.

On February 5, 1937, he sent a message to Congress asking for an act which would permit him to add six justices to the Supreme Court if those members who were past 70 did not resign. Reforms in the lower courts were also asked.

“My purpose is to strengthen the administration of justice and to make it a more effective servant of public need,” the President told Congress.

The record of the historic battle which followed shows that Mr. Roosevelt lost the “battle,” but won the “war.”

Late in his second term, he made it clear that his proposal to add six justices had been only a means toward the ultimate objective of liberalizing the court which was achieved through the resignations of all the conservative justices who had ruled repeatedly against New Deal laws.

Conservatives supplanted

By the time his second term drew to an end, he had named more justices than any President since Mr. Taft, and the once-dominant conservative bloc had been supplanted by a majority which generally viewed the scene from a perspective coinciding with Mr. Roosevelt’s.

But Mr. Roosevelt’s defeat in 1937 was clear-cut and complete. He was attacked as never before. He fought back vigorously – sometimes almost bitterly.

Finally, after weeks of Senate debate, Joseph T. Robinson, then Senate Majority Leader, informed Mr. Roosevelt that his plan was heading for certain defeat.

Seeking to save the prestige of the administration, Mr. Robinson personally sponsored a modified bill authorizing only two new justices.

But Mr. Robinson died suddenly and with him died the chance of even a modified form of Mr. Roosevelt’s original proposals. The President capitulated.

On August 25, he signed a bill dictated by his opponents. This measure affected only lower courts, except that it provided machinery facilitating the retirement of Supreme Court and other federal jurists for age.

Signing a bill setting up an administrative officer for the judiciary on August 1, 1939, Mr. Roosevelt said the day was worth recording “because it marks the final objective of the comprehensive proposal for judicial reorganization which I made to the Congress on February 5, 1937.”

‘Objectives achieved’

He said:

The country is naturally concerned with the attainment of proper objectives rather than any one of many possible methods proposed for the accomplishment of the end.

I call attention to the unwarranted attitude of the Supreme Court with reference to its exercise of constitutional powers.

Measures of social and economic reform were being impeded or defeated by narrow interpretations of the Constitution, and by the assumption on the part of the Supreme Court of legislative powers which properly belong to the Congress.

It is true that the precise method was not adopted, but the objective, as every person in the United States knows today, was achieved.

The results are not even open to dispute. Attacks recently made on the Supreme Court itself by ultra-conservative members of the bar indicate how fully our liberal ideas have already prevailed.

Few Presidents were more keenly alert to world developments than was Mr. Roosevelt.

As Assistant Secretary of Navy during the World War, he epitomized his feeling in a speech at Chautauqua, New York, midway in his presidency when he said solemnly: “I hate war.”

Tried to maintain peace

When clouds of war rolled over Asia and Europe during 1937, 1938 and 1939, Mr. Roosevelt never hesitated to throw the full prestige of the United States in the balance for peace.

But when Japan steadily closed the “open door” in China and Europe went to war in 1939, he turned to efforts to keep America out of the wars and the wars out of the Americas.

During the recurring international crises which preceded the European war, Mr. Roosevelt had used every diplomatic device at his command to head off catastrophe. He appealed personally to Reichsfuehrer Adolf Hitler of Germany and Premier Benito Mussolini of Italy to guarantee the peace of Europe for 10 years or a quarter of a century.

In return for such a guarantee, he offered the good offices of this country in economic conversations designed to lay a basis for a lasting peace.

After recalling his ambassador to Berlin to emphasize American displeasure at the pogrom against the Jews and the use of force as an instrument of national policy, Mr. Roosevelt appealed repeatedly in personal messages to the rulers of Europe.

Neutrality revision

He addressed a personal appeal to President Michael Kalinin asking Russia to modify its demands on Finland and to respect its territorial and national integrity. He marshaled the 21 American republics behind his drive for peace, and sought in a round-robin appeal to unite all other peace-loving nations.

In April 1939, he startled the nation by leaving Warm Springs, Georgia, with the remark “I’ll be back in the fall if we don’t have a war.”

That brought a storm of criticism from Congressmen who asserted their information did not indicate war in Europe was either imminent or inevitable.

When Congress met, Mr. Roosevelt and Cordell Hull, then Secretary of State, proposed revision of neutrality laws to eliminate the embargo which barred this country from shipping arms to belligerents.

Approved in drastically modified form in the House, the issue became the crux of a major Senate battle although it never reached the floor. In the end, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee pigeonholed the bill for the rest of the session.

After the 76th Congress adjourned in August, Mr. Roosevelt accused his opponents in the Senate of gambling with the fate of America and of humanity.

Reconvened Congress

Mr. Roosevelt, vacationing aboard a cruiser off the coast of Newfoundland, put in to Halifax, Nova Scotia, to receive mail, and learned of the non-aggression pact just concluded between Germany and Russia. He rushed back to Washington and was as the White House in command of national policies, when Germany marched into Poland and Britain and France declared war. He reconvened Congress on September 21, 1939.

He told Congress:

I should like to be able to offer the hope that the shadow over the world might swiftly pass.

I cannot. The facts compel my stating with candor, that darker periods lie ahead. The disaster is not of our making; no act of ours engendered the forces which assault the foundations of civilization.

Yet we find ourselves affected to the core; our currents of commerce are changing, our minds are filled with new problems, our position in world affairs has already been altered.

After some six weeks of furious debate, Congress approved Mr. Roosevelt’s program. He lifted the arms embargo and Britain and France placed large orders for airplanes and other armaments. He designated combat areas and proscribed them to American shipping.

Neutrality patrol started

Mr. Roosevelt had proclaimed a limited state of national emergency. He instituted a Navy-Coast Guard neutrality patrol of coastal waters, added to the manpower of the Army, Navy and Marine Corps, recommissioned World War destroyers, and added personnel to the Federal Bureau of Investigation for counterespionage and anti-sabotage drives.

Late in 1939, he sent Congress a $273-million deficiency estimate to pay for these extraordinary precautions.

The Navy was in the midst of the greatest building program of its peacetime history. Mr. Roosevelt at the outset of the New Deal had launched the Navy on a tremendous program.

The regular Army-Navy budget for the 1940 fiscal year, approved by Congress before the European war was even envisaged, called for expenditures of $1,760,000,000 of which one billion was for the Navy’s “first line of defense.”

In November 1939, he said at Warm Springs that even this program would not be sufficient to guard America.

In contrast to the “political honeymoon” of the “100 days” at the outset of his administration, Mr. Roosevelt’s second term was marked by great political battles between Mr. Roosevelt and his entourage of “liberals” and the old-time conservative Democrats who largely controlled Congress.

1938 ‘purge’ failed

This division exploded in 1938 in Mr. Roosevelt’s “purge” directed against his conservative opponents at the polls. It failed and the failure was reflected in steadily increasing hostility in Congress to his key measures.

Mr. Roosevelt personally intervened in Democratic primaries to prevent the renomination of Sen. Walter F. George of Georgia, Ellison D. Smith of South Carolina and Millard F. Tydings of Maryland; and against Rep. John J. O’Connor of New York, chairman of the House Rules Committee. He unseated O’Connor, but Messrs. George, Smith and Tydings were renominated and reelected.

During this period, Mr. Roosevelt worked steadily reorganizing the federal government. Defeated by the House in a previous effort to get authorization to reorganize, he had calmly renewed pressure for authorization in the 76th Congress and got it in an act approved April 3, 1939.

Because of his physical handicap, Mr. Roosevelt had all sorts of advisers. He used their eyes and legs and experience. In the White House, he surrounded himself with experts. At the head of the list in the early days was Louis McHenry Howe, a friend for 25 years. Mr. Roosevelt named him presidential secretary when he took office. Ill for more than a year, Mr. Howe died April 18, 1936.

‘Brain trust’ formed

College professors formed the famous “brain trust,” so named by a newspaperman. Some of these men were spectacular themselves. As the years passed by, their ranks were decimated by resignations, some returning to their classrooms while other took positions with business organizations.

Late in 1939, Presidential Secretary Stephen T. Early, in disclosing the details of Mr. Roosevelt’s “streamlining” of the Executive Department, commented that the reorganization order appeared to mean that the “brain trust” no longer existed. The President’s ranking wartime advisers were Harry Hopkins, James F. Byrnes and Adm. William D. Leahy, his personal chief of staff.

Mr. Roosevelt weighed 10 pounds when he was born, the son of James and Sara Delano Roosevelt. His mother was a famous beauty of New York society and was a kinswoman of the socially prominent and wealthy Astor family. His father was prominent in the railroad world.

Graduates with honors

His early education was obtained from tutors and his parents. At 14, he was sent from his fireside classroom to Groton School for Boys, a fashionable preparatory school in Groton, Mass. He graduated with honors.

Then he went to Harvard and completed the four-year course in three years. Yet he found time for athletics and edited the Harvard Crimson. From Harvard he went to Columbia Law School, afterward taking the examination for admission to the bar and passing with high marks.

For his bride, he chose another Roosevelt – a distant cousin – Anna Eleanor, daughter of Elliott Roosevelt, youngest brother of President Theodore Roosevelt.

They were married in New York City in 1905 on St. Patrick’s Day. “Uncle Ted” came up from the White House in Washington to give the bride away – and to witness a parade of the Irish.

They had six children – Anna, James, Elliott, John and Franklin Jr. Their first born, a boy, died in infancy.

In his own words…

“The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” – First inaugural address, March 4, 1933.

“In the field of world policy, I would dedicate this nation to the policy of the good neighbor.” – First inaugural address, March 4, 1933.

“For the trust reposed in me I will return the courage and the devotion that befit the time. I can do no less. We face the arduous days that he before us in the warm courage of national unity; with the clear consciousness of seeking old and precious moral values; with the clean satisfaction that comes from the stern performance of duty by old and young alike. We aim at the assurance of a rounded and permanent national life. We do not distrust the future of essential democracy.” – First inaugural address, March 4, 1933.

“Continued dependence upon relief induces a spiritual and moral disintegration fundamentally destructive to the national fiber. To dole out relief in this way is to administer a narcotic, a subtle destroyer of the human spirit” – Message to Congress, January 4, 1935.

“I hope that calm counsel and constructive leadership will provide the steadying influence and the time necessary for the coming of new and more practical forms of representative government throughout the world wherein privilege will occupy a lesser place and welfare a greater.” – Message to Congress, January 4, 1935.

“Economic royalists.” – Speech accepting renomination, June 27, 1936.

“This generation of Americans has a rendezvous with destiny.” – Speech accepting renomination, June 27, 1936.

“We have always known the heedless self-interest was bad morale; we know now that it is bad economics.” – Second inaugural address, January 20, 1937.

“The change in the moral climate of America.” – Second inaugural address, January 20, 1937.

“The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.” – Second inaugural address, January 20, 1937.

“If they can take it, I can.” – Replying to the suggestion that the inauguration ceremony be held indoors because of bad weather, January 20, 1937.

“I hate war.” – At Chautauqua, New York, in 1937.

“The hand that held the dagger has stuck it in the back of its neighbor.” – When Italy went to war with France, June 10, 1940.

“America stands at the crossroads of its destiny. We must and will marshal our great potential strength to fend off war from our shores.” – Proclamation putting first peacetime draft into effect in 1940.

“I will, with God’s help, continue to serve with the best of my ability and with the fullness of my strength.” – Acceptance of third term nomination, 1940.

Editorial: Franklin Delano Roosevelt

The nation has lost its leader. It had honored him with its highest office beyond the tenure of any other President. He responded with the best that was in him. Through depression and war, the people looked to him. And in his courage the nation found greater strength to surmount the crises that beset it.

The finest tribute to the qualities of President Roosevelt – and to the American people – was the national unity achieved after the last election. As a fighter he had made enemies. He had made mistakes, as all men do. There was bitterness in the campaign. But when America had preserved the electoral process in the midst of war, the entire nation regardless of party rallied for victory behind the chosen leader.

In that spirit all Americans grieve for him today. In every home, and on all the seas and in the foxholes of every fighting front, his fellow citizens pay homage to their fallen Commander-in-Chief.

Their grief is personal. People felt they knew him. As no other man of his generation, and few of any age, he inspired a highly individual regard. “My friends,” he would say. And somehow that commonplace address, infused with the warmth of his personality, carried over the air and through the printed word into the hearts of ordinary folks who felt that the President was just that – their friend.

There was a gay gallantry about him that none will forget. In little things, the jaunty angle of his cigarette-holder the humorous turn of a phrase, the flashing smile. And in deeper things as well, for his poise and cheer had overcome long suffering and physical handicap. The public sensed this. It strengthened the human bond.

History will rate him high. He was not all things to all men, and no man could have been equal to al the burdens he carried. But this can be said of him that, not once but twice, he led this nation through perils in which it might have perished.

When he took office in 1933, he brought lift to people in despair, he stopped panic, he set the wheels going again. He did not have all the answers, he moved by trial and error, and the price was often great. But he saw us through. In after years, many who disagreed with his policies remembered that – and kept him in office.

Again, when war came, he rose to that supreme emergency. Under our Constitution, which so carefully counterbalances the executive authority in peacetime, he became the most powerful chief of state in all the world. Then in a unique sense he was our leader. As such, his was the fearful responsibility for our record in this war – for the blunders and inadequacies and for the efficiency and the successes, the bad and the good.

The net is victory. That is the epitaph of Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

He lived to see that victory was certain. He died at his work. And all the United Nations of the world join his countrymen in blessing the fruits of his labor.

To our new President, America will give loyal cooperation in the unfinished task. As Mr. Roosevelt 12 years ago received the prayerful best wishes of the nation, so they go out to Mr. Truman in this emergency.

Our enemies abroad will hope that this people in arms will fall out of step, if only for a little while during the change in leadership. Those hopes are vain.

The abiding strength of democracy is that in time of need it produces men equal to the demand. Always in our history this has been so. More than once humble men have been lifted to our highest office, and served the best.

There will be no change in military policy. That will to victory springs from the souls of 135 million Americans.

There will be no change in foreign policy. The determination to make this a just peace, and the commitment to American participation in an international security organization, have been confirmed by both parties in a national election and by Congress.

There will be no change in the desire to make this a better country in which to live, especially for those who have risked their all to save it. That policy is nationwide.

There will be no change in the sanity and decency and courage of the people, which brought forth this Republic, which sustained it through a century and a half, and which remain the promise of its future.

Editorial: The greatest memorial

The world will plan and erect many memorials to Franklin D. Roosevelt.

But the greatest of all would be for the United Nations to carry into practical execution the Atlantic Charter – the first product of his many meetings with the leaders of this war, and the statement so intimately connected with his name.

The Atlantic Charter was drafted in a meeting between the President and Prime Minister Churchill on a warship in the ocean which gave the charter its name, in early August 1941. It was announced in Washington and London of August 14, 1941 – less than four months before Pearl Harbor.

On this day when our nation and the world are mourning the passing of one of the two authors, there could be no better tribute to Franklin D. Roosevelt than to review the Atlantic Charter, with a solemn determination to help carry its provision into actuality.

Here are the things the Atlantic Charter promises:

  • No aggrandizement.

  • No territorial changes that do not accord with the freely expressed wishes of the peoples concerned.

  • Respect for the rights of all peoples to choose the form of government under which they will live.

  • Enjoyment by all states, great or small, victor or vanquished, of access on equal terms to the trade and to the raw materials of the world.

  • Fullest collaboration of all nations toward improved labor conditions, economic adjustment and social security…

  • Peace and safety for all nations within their boundaries and freedom for all men from fear and want.

  • Traversal by all men of the high seas and oceans without hindrance.

  • Abandonment of the use of force.

Twenty-six countries then at war with the Axis on January 2, 1942, formally pledged themselves to the Charter.

Today, in the midst of our mourning, there could be no greater tribute at home or abroad than a sincere determination to carry out the brave words adopted before we entered the war and reaffirmed by all the United Nations afterward

Editorial: The new President

Harry S. Truman takes office as President of the United States under circumstances more difficult than any to face a Vice President elevated to the presidency since Andrew Johnson.

Like President Johnson, the new Chief Executive succeeds in the White House a statesman of world eminence devoutly admired by millions and millions of his countrymen, a man whose place in history inevitably will loom large.

Like Andrew Johnson, President Truman had been Vice President only a few weeks when he was summoned to the White House by the death of his chief.

He, too, becomes the leader of his country on the brink of a period of reconstruction after the ravages of a great war. He, too, assumes office with many in the nation frankly apprehensive of his stature.

There, let us pray, may the parallel end. In the trying years that face him, may President Truman gain the fullest cooperation from all his countrymen. May he be endowed with the strength and the perseverance and the patience which he will need in fullest measure in the severest job mankind can bestow on a human being. May he enjoy the guidance of the Almighty and the faith and loyalty of all Americans.

Senators weep paying tributes

Meet in solemn mood before packed gallery

WASHINGTON (UP) – The Senate, which fought him bitterly on many domestic issues, today forgot past animosities and paid heartfelt tribute to Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Meeting in a solemn mood before crowded galleries, the Senate heard its leaders eulogize the late President as a leader of mankind and a great symbol of democracy in America. All traces of partisanship were gone in the face of a loss which members obviously believed to be one of the severest ever suffered by the United States,

Democratic Leader Alben W. Barkley (D-Kentucky) opened the session.

He said of the dead President:

We do not honor him merely because the American people allowed him to shatter precedents. We do not honor him because history allowed him to rise to a position of world leadership. We honor him for his personal qualities, his moral and intellectual stature. We honor him as an American and as a citizen of the world in the true sense.

Wherever men long for liberty, wherever they shed their blood for the high ideals of humanity, his name is and will be cherished throughout the world, now and in all the ages.

Vandenberg tribute

Sen. Arthur H. Vandenberg, the Republican senator Franklin Delano Roosevelt chose to go to San Francisco, solemnly told the Senate that “a successful peace must be his monument.”

Democratic Whip Lister Hill (D-Alabama) said Mr. Roosevelt was “the foremost man of all this world.”

‘He’ll never die’

Mr. Hill continued:

And now, he stands with Washington, with Jefferson, with Lincoln, with Wilson, and has joined the choice and master spirits of all the ages. He is not dead. Is Washington dead? Is Jefferson dead? Is Lincoln dead? Franklin Roosevelt will never die.

Members wept openly and unashamedly as Mr. Barkley spoke. In a Senate which he had roundly trounced in the last few weeks for large-scale absenteeism, there were few empty seats. The atmosphere was stilled and tense.

Sits in back row

Sen. Edwin C. Johnson (D-Colorado), who so often had opposed administration policies, sat in the back row, his face lined with grief.

Republican Leader Wallace H. White (R-Maine) sniffed, took out a big white handkerchief and blew his nose. Mr. Vandenberg held his head in his hands. Sen. Robert F. Wagner (D-New York), the President’s great friend since they were together in 1911 in the New York Senate, seemed lost in grief.

30-day mourning proclaimed by Dewey

ALBANY (UP) – Gov. Thomas E. Dewey proclaimed today a 30-day period of public mourning in New York State to the memory of President Roosevelt.

“In the tragic loss of Franklin D. Roosevelt, President of the United States, the State of New York has lost its most distinguished citizen, who was twice governor,” Mr. Dewey said.

Gov. Dewey, who opposed President Roosevelt as Republican candidate for the nation’s highest office last fall, directed that all state officers be closed tomorrow, the day of President Roosevelt’s funeral services.

Hopkins likely to fade fast as chief aide

But will be very important at first
By Marshall McNeil, Scripps-Howard staff writer

WASHINGTON – For the time being, Harry Hopkins, Franklin D. Roosevelt’s closest personal adviser, will be almost indispensable to President Truman in his dealings with our major allies.

For Mr. Hopkins is probably the only American who knows firsthand all the understandings among the Big Three.

He attended all the meetings of Mr. Roosevelt, Prime Minister Churchill and Marshal Stalin. He was Mr. Roosevelt’s agent on special trips to London, Moscow, Paris and Rome. For months he lived in the White House.

Hence, at first, the new President will have to depend upon Mr. Roosevelt’s most loyal – and most criticized – friend.

Changes predicted

After that…? Persons who know President Truman well insist that as soon as possible, in these circumstances, he will begin to make changes. Mr. Hopkins, they think, will be a figure in the earliest of these shifts.

Mr. Truman is the sort of man who will have his own “Kitchen Cabinet,” and already some men are being mentioned as possible holders of these important, but often unofficial posts.

There is Hugh Fulton, for example. He is the former Justice Department lawyer whom Mr. Truman employed as chief counsel of what was then the Truman Investigating Committee of the Senate.

Quit with Truman

The new President, while a Senator from Missouri and chairman of the war investigating group, leaned heavily upon this quiet, capable man. Mr. Fulton quit the committee when Mr. Truman became Vice President.

Another may be Democratic National Chairman Robert Hannegan, to whom Mr. Truman can give credit for making him Vice President. Bob Hannegan may become as powerful as Jim Farley was in the early New Deal.

Then, if President Truman picks advisors from the Senate, he may settle upon the quiet-mannered Sen. Carl Hatch (D-New Mexico).

Banker mentioned

The new President’s associates also mention an old friend from St. Louis, John Snyder, a banker there, to whom they expect the new executive to turn for advice.

Mr. Roosevelt had his own “kitchen cabinet” as his administration began, except that it was known as the “Brain Trust.”

With two exceptions, all these are either dead, or gone from official life – James Byrnes and Benjamin Cohen within the last few weeks.

As the years passed, Mr. Roosevelt’s “Kitchen Cabinet” dwindled in size.

Two regulars left

As the war progressed, it was reduced to only two regulars – Mr. Hopkins and Judge Samuel Rosenman. Mr. Hopkins became chairman of the Munitions Assignment Board, and Judge Rosenman took the title of special counsel to the President.

Like Mr. Hopkins, Judge Rosenman is not expected to stay long beyond the time when President Truman himself, or his own “Kitchen Cabinet,” learns the answers.

Brain hemorrhage called paralytic stroke by layman

Ailment may result from exertion or from coughing or sneezing
By Jane Stafford, Science Service medical writer

WASHINGTON – Brain hemorrhage, from which President Roosevelt died, is the commonest of what physicians call “cerebral accidents.” The layman calls it a stroke or apoplexy or a paralytic stroke.

High blood pressure and blood vessel disease are the chief causes of the condition. The exact mechanism by which conditions occur, such as those leading to death from brain hemorrhage or from coronary artery trouble, is not known.

These blood vessels are where the strain comes, and undoubtedly many physicians, knowing the strain Mr. Roosevelt had been under, had been expecting that blood vessels of either heart or brain would give way.

The immediate cause of brain hemorrhage is a rapid rise in blood pressure. This may result from severe muscular exertion or from coughing or sneezing. The immediate sequel of the hemorrhage into the brain is the apoplectic seizure.

Most patients are said to have premonitory symptoms, as dizziness or a sense of pressure in the head. The seizure may, however, occur suddenly in a person in apparently perfect health.

Although paralysis often follows hemorrhage, there is no evidence that infantile paralysis has any connection with the kind following apoplectic seizure. Indirectly it might add some strain through the burden of getting about under physical handicap.