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Evening star. [volume] (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, April 13, 1945, Image 4

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Roosevelt Had Leading Role in Charting Strategy for Axis Defeat
. - • ■ ...
President Took Helm at 51
As Depression Gripped Nation
E y the Associated Press.
The tradition-shattering presi
dential career of Franklin Delano
Roosevelt spanned turbulent years
of peace in which he worked to
lift the Nation out of a depression
end tumultuous years of war -when
he played a dominant role in chart
ing an Allied victory.
While he gained the adulation
of millions, the unprecedented
moves he made and the political
theories he embraced made him the
frequent target for blistering criti
Accusations ranged from “dem
agoguery” to "dictatorship.” The
public debt jumped to a record
peacetime high, then to even greater
wartime peaks. Critics charged the
President with trying to "pack” the
Supreme Court after that tribunal
had thrown out several of his fa
vorite projects and he sought to in
ject “new blood" by reorganizing the
membership. Some party stalwarts
forsook him.
But he became the first President
in history to be elected to a third
term—and by a smashing majority—
and then won a fourth again easily.
An International Statesman.
Mr. Roosevelt had attained a sub
stantial international stature in the
years when he was concerned pri
marily with applying revolutionary
remedies to an economic blight
rooted in the World War.
And after the flames of a second
global conflict were kindled, he be
came the pivotal statesman of more
than 30 United Nations which
pooled thdr might to smash a Ger
man-Italian-Japanese Axis.
Kings and queen*. Presidents and
prime ministers, traveled to the
White House to consult him.
The military strategy of nations
representing 75 per cent of the
earth's surface and 60 per cent of its
population—a strategy that sent
American fighting men, American
war weapons. American food and
American dollars to combat the
Axis—was mapped at conferences
in which he took a leading part.
In Unprecedented Parleys.
He constantly shuffled and revised
a prodigious war production pro
gram. framed stupendous war budg
ets to be met. by taxes that hurt
and. also at home, fought an infla
tion peril hardly less dangerous to
the Nation than its egemies at
He drew up with United Nations
colleagues, as the war progressed,
blueprints for peace—a peace de
signed to avoid the hasty mistakes
of the Versailles Treaty.
International conferences on a
scale never before seen in history
helped the President to formulate
his war plans. Rising to a pinnacle
of world attention with hun in these
councils was Britain's sturdy Prime
Minister, Winston Churchill.
His intimates said nothing less
than the threat of war, and finally
war itself, could have prompted
Mr. Roosevelt to stir up political
turmoil in tremendous proportions
by shattering the 150-year-old
two-term presidential tradition be
gun by George Washington, and
then running for a fourth term.
Says He preferred 10 Keure.
In 1940, the Chief Executive told
the Democratic National Conven
tion he was accepting renomination
for a third term only because of a
“storm'' raging in Europe. He was
re-elected overwhelmingly over
Wendell L. Willkie. the Republican
Pour years later, Mr, Roosevelt
said his preference was to retire to
the family estate at Hyde Park. N.
Y . where he was born January 30,
1882. He told Democratic Chair
man Robert E. Hannegan in a let
"All that is within me crie; out to
go back to my home on the Hudson
River, to avoid public responsibili
ties, and to avoid also the publicity
which in our democracy follows
every step of the Nation's Chief
"Such would be my choice. But
we of this generation chance to live
in a day and hour when our Nation
has been attacked, and when its fu
ture existence and the future ex
istence of our chosen method of
government are at staxe.
"To win this war wholeheartedly,
unequivocally and as quickly as we
can is our task of the first impor
tance. To win this war in such a
way that there be no further woild
wars in the foreseeable future is
our second objective. To urovide oc
cupations, and to provide a decent
standard of living for our men in
the armed forces after the war, and
for all Americans, are the final ob
"Therefore, reluctantly, but as a
good soldier ... I will accept and
serve in this office, if I am so or
dered by the commander in chief
of us all—the sovereign people of
the United States.'’ t
His Republican opponent was
Gov. Thomas E. Dewey of New York.
No Time to c ampaign.
As in the third-term campaign.
Mr. Roosevelt said he would not
have time to campaign in the usual
partisan sense, but would reserve the
right to answer what he called "mis
Dewey opened his campaign Sep
tember 7 with a speech at Philadel
phia. The President got going Sep
tember 23, accusing the opposition
of “callous" and "Iprazen" falsehood.
Mr. Roosevelt was elected, by an
electoral vote of 432 to 99. He car
ried 36 States and Dewey 12.
Because of the war, the fourth
term inaugural ceremony was trans
ferred from the Capitol to the White,
House and shorn of all customary
trappings. It required but 14 min
utes for the swearing in of President
Roosevelt and his running mate,
Senator Truman of Missouri, and
for the President's brief inaugural
address. Less than 10,000 persons
witnessed the affair, which was.
staged on the south portico of the
Executive Mansion.
Meeting at Yalta.
Then an event the whole world
expected occurred. The President
arrived at Yalta, in the Russian
Crimea on February 4 for a con
ference with Prime Minister
Churchill and Marshal Joseph
Stalin, to draw the framework of a
hope for enduring world peace.
On the trip, too, he conferred with
King Ibn Saud of Saudi Arabia,
Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia
and King Farouk of Egypt.
The last great appearange of the
President was on March 1, when he
addressed a joint session of Con
gress, outlining the Crimea Charter
for Peace.
Thereafter newspapermen saw
him several times at news confer
ences. He was a guest of the press
March 22 at the White House cor
respondents’ dinner. The President
seemed to enjoy the dinner, and the
following stage show, as much oi
more than any newspaperman there
He jibed at the newspapermen in
brief speech, and told them in fun
that he had attended more White
House press conferences than any
of them.
Goes to Warm Springs.
A few days ago the President, in
I need of rest, left on his last jour
' ney—to his beloved Southern home
at Warm Springs, Ga.
A tremendous figure of a man
despite legs left withered and use
less by infantile paralysis in 1921
Mr. Roosevelt shouldered burdens as
heavy as any Chief Executive ever
carried. While he stood up under a
job which had wrecked the health
of many a predecessor, the years
naturally left their mark on him.
Forced to Take Rest.
Influenza, sinusitis and bronchitis
weakened him in the winter ol
1943-4 and rumors spread about his
health. In AdHI, 1944, he bundled
up his old clothes and took a month
off to convalesce in shirt-sleeves on
the languorous plantation coast of
South Carolina. When he returned to
Washington his physician said he
was in as good shape as any man of
62 could hope to be and that his con
dition offered no bar to another four
years in the White House.
Mr. Roosevelt accepted the fourth
term nomination by radio from a
naval base at San Diego, Calif.
Immediately he boarded a cruiser
for his first wartime trip into the
Pacific and consultations in Hawaii
—where a sneak punch biought
America into the war on December
7, 1941—with top commanders in
the battle against Japan.
He long since had broken all
presidential travel records, and war
did not deter him from pushing
the mileage up around 300,000.
Momentous Decisions.
Time after time, he or Mr. Chuich
ill dared the dangers of Atlantic
crossings for epochal conferences
which shifted the Allies from the
defensive to the offensive and
changed the course of the combat
around the world.
Standing out in sharp relief, in
the light of events the next summer,
were their meetings at Cairo and
Teheran. Iran, at the close of 1943.
In a series of parleys, they talked
with Premier Joseph Stalin of Rus
sia. Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek
of China and President Ismet Inonu
of neutral Turkey.
Italy already had been knocked
out of the war. So at Cairo and
Teheran strategy was perfected for
obliterating the military power of
Germany and Japan.
It called for Gen. Dwight D Eisen
hower. who had welded British and
American arms in the Mediter
ranean into a mighty and victorious
force, to assume command of in
vasion forces poised in Britain for
a knockout blow at Germany from
the west.
i.named ov itussians.
First, at a desert hotel in the
shadow' of a great pyramid, the
American President, the British
Prime Minister and the Chinese
Generalissimo agreed that Japan
must be utterlv defeated and her
empire utterlv destroyed by strip
ping away lands acquired in decades
of conquest. Military measures nec
essary to fulfill these aims were con
The generallissimo flew back to
Chungking. Roosevelt and Churchill
flew to Teheran, where the adjoining
Soviet and British embassies formed
a single compound surrounded by
grim Russian tommv-gunner guards.
Stalin, who had left his country
for the first time since the revolu
tion. invited the American President
to stay at the Soviet Embassy during
his participation.
In ‘Complete Agreement.’
Four days of deliberation pro
duced, Roosevelt, Churchill and
Stalin said, a determination that
"our nations shall work together in
the war and in the peace that will
follow ” They added they had con
certed plans for the "destruction
of the German forces," and had
"reached complete agreement as
to the scope and timing of opera
tions which will be undertaken from
the east, west and south.”
From Teheran, Stalin went back
to Moscow. Roosevelt and Churchill
to Cairo to be joined by President
Inonu. Three days of conferences
in Cairo brought forth another com
munique w'hich reported that "the
closest unity existed between the
United States of America, Turkey
and Great Britain in their attitude
toward the world situation.”
En route home, the President
stopped at battle - scarred Tunis,
Malta and Sicily. The Secret Service
had to restrain him from looking in
on fighting in Italy.
By mid-1944, the full significance
of the Cairo-Teheran meetings had
become apparent.
In fulfillment of the commit
ments. the invasion of France got
under way from the west and south,
Russia pounded hard on the eastern
front and by fall Allied arms were
on German soil. Victory in Europe
was in sight.
And in the Pacific, Allied forces
won successes in Burma, flushed the
Japanese from one island strong
hold after another, dealt serious
blows to the enemy's navy and sent
bombers winging with increasing
frequency over the heart of Nippon.
Japan too faced inevitable defeat.
War was far from Mr. Roosevelt's
thoughts on that March 4, 1933,
when he declared in his first in
augural address that the only thing
America need fear was “fear itself.’’
‘New Deal’ Is Born.
Of aristocratic lineage, a scion of
wealth, he came to power in the
midst of a strangling depression,
proclaiming that there must be a
“new deal” for the “forgotten man."
Thus his administration got its
name. And the New Deal label
stuck even in later years when the
President wanted to substitute the
slogan: “Win the War.”
When Mr. Roosevelt went into the
presidency at the age of 51, the
United States had an estimated
12.000,000 persons unemployed
prices were depressed to new low
levels, foreign trade shrunken and
the national banking system in an
extremely nervous condition as the
result of widespread bank failures
One of his first acts was to pro
claim a national banking holiday
that closed every financial deposi
tory in the counry for 10 days while
readjustments were made. He sum
moned Congress into special session
to implement by law a national
recovery program that shattered
precedents. One hundred days later
virtually his every request had been
granted and he held powers never
before intrusted to a President in
i peacetime.
Controversial Steps.
Many of the steps he took were
| disputed at the time, and later, on
economic, social, moral and consti
tutional grounds. Some were suc
cessfully contested in the courts, but
: others stood the test of time.
The National Industrial Recovery
Administration was set up by Con
gress in response to the President’s
request for “machinery to obtain
wider reemployment, shorten the
working week, pay decent wages for
the shorter week and prevent unfair
competition and overproduction.”
The Agricultural Adjustment Ad
ministration was designed to help
farmers through crop control meas
ures. Laws were passed to insure
bank deposits and to provide Gov
ernment aid for home owners facing
mortgage foreclosures.
The Constitution was amended to
i repeal national prohibition. Social
| security benefits were provided by
legislation. A wage-hour law was
enacted for labor. A “good neigh
bor” policy was established for the
Western Hemisphere.
congress stinens,
"Alphabet agencies" were created
in profusion. Such letter combina
tions as NRA. RFC. AAA, CCC,
'many others became familiar house
hold terms.
The New Deal also represented,
bigger Government budgets, larger
deficits, heavier taxes and abandon- \
ment of the gold standard. In the
| beginning there was a "brain trust" j
whose college professor members j
were credited with formulating many
of the Roosevelt policies.
There was swift acceptance by
Congress of early reforms, then a
gradual stiffening against White
House recommendations and an
abortive "purge” in which the Chief
Executive tried in 1938 to get the
political scalps of legislators he con
sidered too conservative. He failed
in all but one instance.
It was to hold aloft the New- Deal
banner for a second term that the
President was unanimously renom
inated by the Democrats in 1936
and overwhelmingly defeated Re
publican nominee Alf M. Landon.
then Governor of Kansas, in the
Acts Against Aggressors.
Unquestionably Mr. Roosevelt had
caught a glimpse of war on the hori
zon. As early as 1937, in a Chicago
speech, he demanded the "quaran
tine" of "aggressor nations.”
He repeatedly advised America to
prepare for any emergency. He
urged repeal of a "neutrality" law
that banned shipment of arms to
warring nations. He said opponents
of this step were "gambling" that
there would be no second world war
In January, 1939, the President
called for "measures short of war"
to defeat aggressors. He declared in
his third-term campaign the next
year that America's objective was to
fend off aggressors from the Western
Hemisphere. To fathers and mothers
he gave a solemn, repeated assur-i
j ance—which was hurled back at him
j later—that "your boys are not going
I to be sent into foreign wars."
Europe went to war in September.
1939, and Mi. Roosevelt watched the
Axis run roughshod over country
after country. The President took
realistic steps. j
“Arsenal of Democracy.”
He and his congressional support
ers remodeled the Neutrality Act to
allow "cash-and-carry” purchase of
arms bv belligerents—a step favor
ing the Allies, since Germany
couldn't get through the British
After the Nazis swarmed through
Holland and Belgium in 1940. Mr.
Roosevelt set up a billion-dollar
emergency arms program and a
National Defense Advisory Com
mission which evolved later into
the War Production Board.
| He laid down the principle that
the preservation of Britain and the
British Navy were necessary to
American safety, and in September,
1940. traded 50 old destroyers to
Britain for naval and air base sites
in the Western Atlantic. The next
month, selective service became law.
A new Army was drafted.
Naval and air programs were ac
celerated, industry put on a wartime
basis, and America became the
' arsenal of democracy.”
Japan’s Treachery.
In March. 1941, the dollar sign
was wiped from munitions for the
Allies in a multibillion lease-lend
program. And, on May 27, 1941, a
few months after his third term
began, the Chief Executive declared
an "unlimited national emergency.”!
The United States had watched:
uneasily the victorious sweep of
Japanese arms through the South
west Pacific and had attempted to
check it by persuasion.
But suddenly Japan, borrowing a
technique of surprise and treachery
from her Axis partners, struck
Pearl Harbor with planes and sub
marines on that fateful Sunday,
December 7. 1941—at the very mo
ment when her emissaries in Wash
ington deceitfully talked peace with
Secretary of State Cordell Hull. The
attack left many United States
warships sunk or seriously damaged
and caused more than 3,000 casual
It was a day, Mr. Roosevelt de
clared. "which will live in infamy.”
The “Survival War.”
President Roosevelt called World
i War II the "survival war.”
In his war message the day after
i the Pearl Harbor attack, he said
Japan had struck a "dastardly”
blow while still at peace with this
Nation, and added, "No matter how
long it may take us to overcome
this premeditated invasion, the
American people in their righteous
might will win through to absolute
Germany and Italy declared war
on the United States the morning of
December 11, and Congress, at the
President's request, adopted a war
resolution the same day after the
Chief Executive had said in a mes
"The forces endeavoring to en
slave the entire world now are
moving toward this hemisphere.
Never before has there been a
greater challenge to life, liberty and
"Delay invites great danger.
Rapid and united effort by all of the
peoples of the world who are de
termined to remain free will Insure
a world victory of the forces of
justice and of righteousness over
the forces of savagery and of bar
For feme time before the
United States entered the war
BEGINNING OF A BUSY ERA—Herbert Hoover, retiring President, offers his best wishes to
President-elect Roosevelt as they enter an automobile for the ride to the Capitol, where Mr.
Roosevelt was to take his first oath of office. —Underwood Photo.
there had been trouble with Ger
many over attacks on American
ships helping to move supplies to
Great Britain. The President had
ordered the Navy to shoot at Axis
submarines on sight in what he
called American “defense” waters.
Mr. Roosevelt was outspoken in
his friendship for Britain, and some
of his critics declared that his utter
ances and actions had compromised
the Nation. Organizations sprang
up in opposition to his attitude.
Some men of his own political faith
in Congress differed with his course.
Prior to Germany’s attack on
Poland that precipitated World War
II, the President urged conference
settlement of international prob
lems. But his personal intervention
with Adolf Hitler and Benito Mus
solini brought only cold rebukes
from the German and Italian dic
In the midst of all his preparations
for emergency, the Pres’dent had
proclaimed to Congress his famed
"four freedoms”—freedom of speech
and religion, freedom from want and
fear—as fundamental to perpetual
harmony among nations.
In part, those concepts formed the
basis for that doctrine of peace aims,
the "Atlantic Charter.” drafted by
the President and Prime Minister
Churchill in their first meeting in
August, 1941, off the Newfoundland
From that original meeting in the
Atlantic there developed, between
Mr. Roosevelt and Mr. Churchill, a
profound affection and confidence,
nutured by mutual respect and unity
of purpose and by a series of addi
tional conferences at fairly regular
Against a backdrop of Allied re
verses on fronts around the world,
a second Roosevelt-Churchill meet
ing in Washington took place in
June, 1942. Russia, reeling from a
midyear Nazi offensive, had been
clamoring for a second front to
siphon Nazi soldiers from Soviet
The President and Prime Min
ister completed plans and logistics
for the invasion of North Africa,
which Russia insisted was no sec
ond front at all. But it marked a
definite turning point in Anglo
American fortunes of war, for the
Allies swept the enemy off the the
African continent and from Sicily,
and finally, in Italy, carried war
fare to Europe itself.
I nconditional Surrender.
Mr. Churchill gave the American
President credit for being “the au
thor of this mighty undertaking" in
North Africa, an undertaking which
first brought Gen. Eisenhower to
the forefront of the Allied military
By January, 1943. the enemy had
been cleaned out of Africa suf
ficiently for Mr. Roosevelt to fly to
Casablanca, Morocco, for another
get-together with Mr. Churchill,
this time in a glistening villa.
It was an epochal trip. For the
first time during a war an American
Chief Executive had gone to foreign
soil. Not since the days of Abraham
Lincoln, who did not have to leave
the District of Columbia, had a
President been in a combat zone.
For 10 days the President and
Prime Minister had their heads to
gether. Then they called in war
correspondents to tell them they
had decreed ‘‘unconditional sur
render” for the Axis and had
reached “complete agreement” on
war plans for 1943.
Situation Is Bright.
Premier Stalin had been invited
to the conference but couldn’t rrake
it. He was too busy with fighting.
But he and Generalissimo Chiang
Kai-shek were advised o| the de
cision calling for the mopping up
of resistance in Tunisia and the
conquest of Sicily.
Pacific War Mapped.
An official statement said, how
ever, that “complete agreement”
had been attained "on future op
erations in all theaters of the war.”
The Pacific came in for a large
share of attention ai still another
war conference in Quebec later.
Lord Louis Mountbatten, who had
led Britain's famed Commandos, was
appointed supreme commander in
Southeast Asia.
Another Quebec meeting between
Mr. Roosevelt and Mr. Churchill was
held in September of 1944. Their
war maps proclaimed that Ger
many’s fate was settled and they
were able to perfect plans for shift
ing the tremendous weight of British
and American arms from Europe to
the Pacific and for new, crushing
blows at Japan. They pledged “de
struction of the barbarians in the
Pacific" just as soon as Europe
could be pulled from under “the
corroding heel of the Hun.”
In between war conferences the
Chief Executive found time to deal
with acute economic problems which
plagued his administration as they
had done in its nonwar years and
to take a couple of lengthy swings
around the country to see how war
plants, military establishments and
the people were getting along under
wartime difficulties.
Finds America in Stride.
TTie first trip, in September, 1942
took him across the northern tier of
S,tates, down the West Coast, across
the South and back to Washington
where he voiced a conviction the rest
of the country was far ahead of the
Capital in war spirit.
The next April Mr. Roosevelt was
off again, traveling through the
Southeastern States as far west as
Colorado and back through the Mid
The high light of the journey was
a dip into Mexico, another prece
dent-shattering journey beyond the
borders on which he met President
Manuel Avila Camacho of Mexico
at Monterrey, was acclaimed with
bubbling enthusiasm by a festive
city and discussed Mexican-Amer
ican problems.
He said the tour convinced him
that the armed forces and the home
front were in their stride.
Battle Against Inflation.
The economic issues which har
assed the country in wartime cen
tered around inflation and its many
facets. On September 7.1942. Presi
dent Roosevelt asked Congress to
authorize rigid control of prices,
salaries, wages and profits. A "sta
bilization act” resulted. And from
the Supreme Court the President
drafted James F. Byrnes to be eco
nomic stabilization director.
Mr. Roosevelt was in the na
tional eye long before entering
the White House. He had been
a New York State Senator. Assis
tant Secretary of the Navy in
World War I days: unsuccessful
candidate for Vica President when
James M. Cox was defeated for the
presidency and Governor of New
York for two terms.
It was during Mr, Roosevelt’s first
term as Governor that the first of
two attempts was made on his 'ife.
In April, 1929. p bomb addressed to
him was found in the Albany post
offlee. A porter accidentally kicked
the package causing it to set off a
sputtering fuse. It was dropped in
a pail of water and failed to go off
Stricken While Swimming.
In February, 1933, Mr. Roosevelt.
as President-elect, visited Miami,
Fla. Giuseppe Zangara fired fiva
shots at him, but they killed Mayor
Anton J. Cermak of Chicago instead
when a bystanfer deflected the as
sassin's aim. Zangara wras electro
cuted for the Cennaic slaving. His
excuse for the shooting was “hate
for all rulers."
or distinguished Dutch ancestry,
Mr Roosevelt was born to a life of
comfortable ease. Educated at Gro
ton and Harvard, he studied for the
; law and practiced his professoin be
I fore engaging upon a public career.
:In 1921 he was stricken with infan
tile paralysis while swimming at
the family summer home at Cam
pobello. N. B.
On the day he was stricken he
had plunged into the cold surf with
his usual zest. A few hours later
he had to be carried away on a
. stretched. For months his life hung
in the balance.
The story was told that as he
lay grimly concentrating every
force of will on the task of forc
ing reluctant nerve centers to re
spond, his exertion plainly visible,
he gasped to those about liim:
Helps Other Victims.
“You folks don’t know what fun
it is just to move one little toe.”
Gamely, he fought the disease
and after weary, discouraging
months of treatment, wt£s able to
walk with steel braces, crutches
and finally with the aid of canes.
When he became President, he
appeared at public functions sup
ported by a military aide or lean
ing upon the arm of a son. Ramps
were used to assist him onto rail
road trains and in parts of the ex
ecutive mansion. He permitted his
birthday to be used for celebrations
through the country to raise*funds
for sufferers from the disease.
Because he found the waters at
Warm Springs helpful, Mr. Roose
velt established the Warm Springs
Foundation so that others suffering
from the same affliction, but with
out the money to go there, might
enjoy the benefits.
Likes Being President.
Once he told a close friend he
thought his crippled condition was
an asset. He explained that while
others might be tempted to get up
now and then to look out of the
window or stretch their legs, he
was riveted to his desk and thus
was able to concentrate on his work.
He liked his job and seemed able
to take his tasks in stride.
“Wouldn’t you be President if you
could?” he once asked & friend
“Wouldn’t anybody?”
During his career great friend
ships were broken, among them
with two of his earliest and most
powerful supporters, John L. Lewis,
head of the United Mine Workers,
and former Gov. Alfred E. Smith
of New York. The “new deal” and
“forgotten man” political philoso
phy brought the word “demagog
uery” from Smith.
James A. Farley, almost a life
long friend and political bulwark,
cooled toward Mr. Roosevelt when
he ran for a third and fourth term
but each time supported the Roose
velt ticket.
On the other hand, some old
friends, such as Harry L. Hopkins
faithfully served through the years
as executive aides in any job
Throughout everything, the crip
pled thirty-first President of ths
United States smiled, played when
he could and continued to capti
vale many of his personal audiences
and the millions who listened to his
fireside chats.
But he made many enemies, too,
and they were quick with replies
and counterthrusts. He was criti
cized and chided. A frequent charge
was that he was beaded toward
dictatorship. When he said he would
accept •‘reluctantly, but as a good
soldier” the fourth term nomina
tion, the Republicans retorted:
"Mr. Roosevelt is the first of 31
Presidents of the United States to
claim that the title of Commander
in Chief makes him a soldier and
to use that title as a pretext to
perpetuate himse'f in office."
The New Deal program cost enor
mous sums in peacetime, especially
for public relief and public works.
Millions of people were put on the
Government payroll, and vast ex
penditures were authorized for
bridges, roads, dams and public
buildings in the largest "pump
priming ’ experiment in history.
Public Utility Program.
The result was a sertes of badly
unbalanced budgets, and an in
crease of the public debt to unprece
dented figures.
All of this was attacked by the
opposition as wasteful, ruinous to
the financial stability of the Gov
ernment, and damaging to national
morale. It was defended unflinch
ingly by the President as necessary
to permit the Nation to keep its
I head above the inundation of the
! world depression.
Mr. Roosevelt's campaign against
great public utilities also generated
bitter controversy and brought from
his opponents a cry of "state social
TVA—the Tennessee Valley Au
thority project of flood control, nav
igation and electric pow'er distribu
tion—was the striking example of
the President's rate "yardstick” for
; public services.
In eight years alone Mr. Roose
j velt pushed through Congress ex
penditures of $850,000,000 for vast
'construction such as Bonneville and
Grand Coulee powet and irrigation
plants on the Columbia River. By
the end of his second term these
public enterprises were supplying
more than one-twentieth of tne
country's electricity.
I Some Innovations Applauded.
He also brought about strict reg
ulation of utility holding companies
and instituted a huge rural electri
fication program.
While President Roosevelt's many
i innovations drew terrific attack
there were other changes which ap
peared to win almost unanimous
approval, such as establishment ol
the Civilian Conservation Corps
and enactment of the Social Security
The CCC was established to supply
work of constructive nature, plus
training in various skills foi unem
ployed young men and war veterans
The Social Security Act was aimec
at providing the security of social
insurance for the aged and the job
I less.
| In his first two terms Mr. Roose
velt was concerned primarily wit!
domestic problems. The first tern
opened in the depths of a nationa
economic collapse and the famous
100 days of banking and othei
l emergency legislation followed.
The Blue Eagle era of the NR/
and the first AAA emerged Iron
this, and the conflict between thi
New Deal and conservative traditior
was on in force. Mr. Roosevell
swiftly became known as the coun
; try’s foremost "practical liberal’
and leader of a social revolution.
Clash With Supreme Court.
! The mainspring of the NR/
was the code structure, undei
which a mammoth portion ol
American business was conductec
for nearly two years. Employers
accepting a blanket code of work
hours and wages were entitled tc
display the blue eagle emblem a;
an evidence of their co-operation
j In the spring of 1935 the Supremi
Court ruled out the codes of fail
competition provided by the NRA or
the ground Congress had handec
over too much authority to thi
President, who had been giver
broad regulatory powers over busi
nesses engaged in interstate com
After the high court had held thi
AAA and some other major enact
ments unconstitutional, the Prerfl
dent, lauding the teamwork betweei
Congress and White House, set ou
expressly to inject “new blood” inti
the august nine-member tribunal.
Rebuffed by Congress.
But this time Congress balked anc
another famous period of days cami
into being—the 168 days of the courl
reorganization fight.
The President’s bill Jailed of pas
sage but a system for retirement
I from the high court was enacted
and by the end of the second tern
vacancies occasioned by retiremen
and death enabledTiim to name flvi
men of his own choosing. Two ad
ditional vacancies occurred early ii
the third term. The President sail
the court fight had been won.
It was not an unleavened victory
The Democratic party split on thi
issue, and the division continue!
into the House and Senate election
of 1838 and the third-term con
troversy of 1840.
.Despite the conflicts, and criti
cisms, the President, with grea
personal charm and an unusual i
ability to fathom the desires of the
electorate, turned up unprecedented
majorities at the polls.
But it remained for the war-born
third term to test to the limit his
qualities of leadership both as
President and as an international
champion of embattled democracy.
While Europe blazed throughout
the early months of 1940, the great
political question here was "What
about the third term?” The ad
ministration had produced no
leader who appeared qualified in
all respects to inherit the Roosevelt
prestige and carry on the program.
If the Democrats wanted to win,
the argument ran, they would have
to "draft Roosevelt.”
A third-term nomination ap
peared even more certain after the
Republicans, in convention at Phila
delphia, chose dynamic Wendell L.
Willkie, utility executive and old
time foe of the New Deal’s Tennes
see Valley Authority, to head their
1940 ticket. Senator Charles L. Mc
Nary of Oregon was his running
Does Little Campaigning
It was no surprise to anybody,
therefore, when the Democratic;
national convention, meeting in j
Chicago, renominated Mr. Roose
velt. More surprising because
hardly expected at all was Mr.
Roosevelt’s choice of his Secretary
of Agriculture, Henry Agard Wal
lace of Iowa, to be vice presidential
Mr. Wallace was sidetracked In
1944, however, when the Democratic
National Convention selected Sena
tor Harry Truman of Missouri for
second place on the fourth-term
Engrossed in questions of defense
and foreign policy, Mr. Roosevelt
refrained from stumping for a
third term until the week before
Mr. Willkie set campaign travel
records and he gained a greater
popular ballot total than any Re
publican nominee ever had reg
istered. But Mr. Roosevelt, the
‘old campaigner,” as he dubbed
himself, was approximately 4,000,
000 ballots ahead, and he received
449 electoral votes to 82 for Mr.
| Willkie.
President Roosevelt was the only
child of James Roosevelt and
Sara Delano, his wife. Like his fifth
cousin. Theodore Roosevelt, the later
Chief Executive was descended from
Claes Van Roosevelt and Jannetje
Thomas, who came from Holland to
the Dutch settlement of New Amster
dam in 1636.
The Delano clan was also eminent
In New York The family is of
Flemish origin, and it is said that Mr
Roosevelt’s progenitor. Phillippe Del
ano. arrived at Duxbury. Mass. 20
years before the Roosevelts left their
European home Always seafaring
folk, the Delanos gave Mr Roosevelt
a heritage of love for salt water.
Received Cleveland Blessing.
Devoted parents guided his earliest
steps. Attentive servants waited utioc
his pleasure. Grover Cleveland, his
father's close personal friend, was but
one of the eminent characters whc
vi6ited the estate and freely gave
their blessing to the owner's attrac
tive son. Every one worth knowing
was glad to be received by James
Roosevelt and his charming wife.
Educational opportunities likewise
came gratuitously and as a matter of
course. His earliest schooling he re
ceived at home from his parents and
from learned and competent tutors.
! It is said that he was an active and
eager scholar, with the capacity to
absorb knowledge without great con
scious effort. Eventually, he was en
tered at Groton Preparatory School,
where he completed the ordinary six
year course in four years. He was
ready for Harvard in 1900.
Follows the Law.
. Receiving his A. B degree in 1904
the j’oung man was free to follow his
predilection for the law. He entered
the Columbia University Law School
the same year, and after three years
study there was admitted to the New
York bar in 1907. Meantime he had
married his cousin, his godfather'!
daughter and Theodore Roosevelt-!
niece Anna Eleanor Roosevelt. Tlif
ceremony took place on March 17
1905. and President Roosevelt gavi
the bride away. Alice Roosevelt, Mrs
Nicholas Longworth to be, was £
bride's maid. Five children wen
born to the couple: Anna Eleanor
who became Mrs. Curtis Dali, anc
later, Mrs. John Boettiger. and foui
; sens, James, Elliott, Franklin, jr.
and John.
The youthful lawyer, soon afte:
leaving Columbia, joined the firm o
Carter, Ledyard & Milburn. In 1911
he formed a new partnership. th<
firm of Marvin. Hooker <fc Roosevelt
The same year marked the beginninj
of his political career.
The original inspiration towarc
politics is a subject of speculation ir
Mr. Roosevelt's case.
It is obvious that no Rooseveli
with wealth, legal training anc
healthy interest in public affairs
long could remain exempt from po
litical concerns. Franklin, like
Theodore, was born to that role ir
the drama of his country.
Hyde Park lay within the bounda
ries of a Republican domain, anc
the Democrats of the State, ir
their endeavor to capture that ter
ritory, fastened on Mr. Rooseveli
as a likely captain to lead them tc
victory. He was nominated for State
Senator in the 26th district.
| He promptly and effectively sei
out to gain votes, and wherever he
went and whenever he spoke, he
; broke traditions. He even riskec
| the dangers of campaigning in ar
automobile, then a "detested con
traption.” Throughout the month’:
battle he had the enthusiastic sup
1 port of Mrs. Roosevelt, and with hei
I help and that of neighbors who hac
known him since boyhood, he wa:
elected. When the Legislature con
1 vened he rented a house in Alban;
and installed his family there
' This done, he was ready for busi
1 ness, and the principal business a
- the time was that of warring upoi
1 the so-called "bosses," the un
crowned czars of both the Democra
tic and Republican parties.
Mr. Roosevelt's first appearance li
1 the national picture was in 1912. whei
he threw his support to the pre-con
vention campaign of Woodrow Wilson
then Governor of New Jersey and
; like himself, an independent Demo
, crat by temperament and conviction
; The convention met in Baltimore, an(
; Mr. Roosevelt was one of the Nev
i York delegation opposing Speake:
. Champ Clark's claims for the presi
, dential nomination. When Mr. Wil
son was chosen to make the race, Mr
Roosevelt continued to give him ai<
and counsel, when the Democrat
; won the struggle it became apparen
: that the Hyde Park family soon woul<
| be moving to Washington. Just wha
' would be offered Mr. Roosevelt wa
a matter of speculation. Possibly h
was given his choice of several posti
1 In any event, he was appointed As
- sistant Secretary of the Navy and be
:ame a constructive Influence in the
Wilson administration.
Congenially Situated Here.
Working with Josephus Daniels and
vlth President Wilson. Mr. Roosevelt
bund himself very congenially situ
ited. He took office on March 17.
1913, and remained until August 7,
1920, when he resigned to campaign
tor the vice presidency as running
nate with James M. Cox of Ohio.
When the country chose Warren G.
Harding and Calvin Coolidge it ex
pressed its desire for a thoroughgo
ng change rather than any particu
lar antipathy to the Democratic
standard bearers. Mr. Roosevelt cer
tainly suffered no permanent damage
by his defeat. On the contrary, his
Nation-wide speaking tour had ad
ded to his popularity. He was a
national figure, In the full meaning
of that term, at last.
But it may be that, following so
closely on his tireless labors of the
war period, the 1920 campaign weak
ened Mr. Roosevelt’s physical reserve
and prepared the way for the crush
ing blow which struck his personal
fortunes In August, 1921. Thirty-nine
years of age, tall, robust, sturdily
healthy in appearance but sadly tired,
he fell a victim to poliomyelitis, or
infantile paralysis. He emerged from
the disease a helpless cripple, his legs
useless, his feet leaden weights to be
dragged through the remainder of his
life. But his spirit was untouched.
"I'll beat this thing!” he swore, and
from that day forward he fought his
way back to normal ease of move
ment. He underwent periodical treat
ment at Warm Springs, Ga., from
1922 to 1932.
In 1924 he undertook the general
management of the preconvention
campaign of his friend, the late
Gov. Alfred E. Smith. Perhaps there
is no more dramatic memory in the
minds of Democrats than that of
his appearance at the Madison
Square Garden convention June 27
to place in nomination the name of
the "Happy Warrior.” He dragged
himself into the hall, swinging his
body slowly and painfully forward,
his fists wrapped white around the
handle pieces of his crutches, his
face strained, a mere ghost of the
athlete who had played football and
baseball at Groton and striven for
the official eight at Harvard. The
crowded auditorium echoed with
Drafted for Governor.
By 1928 he had regained a large
measure of his normal strength. Again
he was active in preconvention en
j deavors in behalf of his friend, and
; again, at the Houston convention, on
June 28. 1928, he presented the claims
. of the Tammany leader. Gov. Smith
was chosen to make the race, and Wtc.
Roosevelt returned to Warm Springs
for further treatment of his crippled
limbs. It was there that he received,
on October 2, a telephone appeal from
his comrade in arms to accept the
Democratic nomination for Governor
of New York.
Mr. Roosevelt consented against his
| will it has been said. The campaign
which followed was ugly and bitter.
Gov. Smith was defeated: Mr. Roose
velt was elected. That he was suc
cessful in mast of his undertak
ings was made manifest when,
in 1930, he was re-elected Gov
ernor with a plurality of 725.001 votes.
He was the first Democratic candidate
to carry “up-State’’ New York. Again,
his victory was largely non-partisan
in character. His independence was
confirmed. Nor did he fail to take
full advantage of the fact.
Possibly it was Mr. Roosevelt’s In
sistence on his freedom that brought
about his break with Mr. Smith. The
incident is wrapped in mystery, and,
though many explanations have been
’offered, the truth is as yet unknown.
In any event, there was a gradual
drifting apart, if not a definite
“The Logical Candidate."
The pre-convention campaign to
j secure the Democratic nomination
for th# presidency for Mr. Roosevelt
began at the time of hh second in
auguration as Governor of New
York, January 1, 1931. His friends
argued that he was “the logical
candidate.” and they went to work
with enthusiasm in his behalf.
Naturally they did not have an un
challenged path to their goal. In
the East, Mr. Smith was opposed
and Gov. Albert C. Ritchie of Mary
land was conspicuously available
In the West, John N. Garner of
Texas, Speaker of the House of
Representatives, was boomed for the
honor. Other presumptive candi
dates were: Newton D. Baker, for
mer Secretary' of War; Harry F.
Byrd, Governor of Virginia; William
H. Murray, Governor of Oklahoma;
George White, Governor of Ohio;
’ James A. Reed, former United States
i Senator from Missouri, tnd Melvin
1 Traylor, Chicago banker.
Mr. rcooseveu cnose as nis man
ager and personal representative
James A. Farley of New York, chair -
; man of the New York State Boxing
Commission and long a worker in
the ranks of the New York State
Democratic organization. Mr. Far
ley had the reputation of success.
Months before the party convention
at Chicago he was claiming the
choice of his candidate. That his
optimism was justified was demon
i strated w:hen the convention as
sembled, June 27. Mr. Roosevelts
name was placed before the conven
! tion by John E. Mack of Hyde Park,
who had given the Governor his
first nomination in 1910. Mr. Mack
was seconded by Mrs. John C. Green
wav of Arizona, w-ho had been a
bridesmaid, with Mrs. Longworth,
at the wedding of the Roosevelts
in 1905.
Balloting began at about 6 o'clock
;on the morning of July 1. Mr. Roose
velt received 666 % votes on the first
call, roughly, 103 less than his man
ager had expected. On the second
call he had 667}i. On the third
682 79 100. Then the convention re
cessed for a few hours’ resr. The
. Governor's State had given him only
| 28% votes out of 94. Mr. Smith,
. refusing to concede the hopelessness
of his cause, told newspapermen:
"I'm not only going to stick, but I'm
going to be nominated.” Even as he
| spoke a group of party leaders from
the East and from the West, private
, ly. were deciding that the sensible
thing to do was to compromise. Ru
mors of such an arrangement had
‘ been rife for . evsral days.
When the delegates reassembled
in the evening William Gibbs Me
Adoo, former Secretary of the
Treasury and a long-time foe of
Mr. Smith, appeared cn the plat
form to disclose an alliance between
the Roosevelt and Gamer forces.
His first words called forth a storm
of protest from the galleries and
from the Smith forces on the
floor. When quiet was restored
and Mr. McAdoo had finished his
remarks, the balloting proceeded. It
was immediately apparent that Mr.
Roosevelt would be chosen. He re
ceived 945 votes. His Tammany
friends of other days declared they
had been “double-crossed.”
Mr. Garner, In line with the
(Continued on Page A-5.)
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