Depression Decade: From New Era through New Deal, 1929-1941

By Broadus Mitchell | Go to book overview

CHAPTER IV
Banking and Currency Crisis

FRANKLIN DELANO ROOSEVELT ( 1882-1945) was elected President on the Democratic ticket in 1932 and was three times re‐ elected. He was born on his father's estate at Hyde Park, New York, and in education, travel, and outdoor sports made good use of the opportunities offered by wealth and social position. He graduated from Groton School, Harvard, and the law school of Columbia University.His marriage to Anna Eleanor Roosevelt, a distant cousin, gave him a partner whose enlightened mind and warm social sympathies were to be of utmost importance in his public career. While practicing law in New York City he succeeded to his father's responsibilities in Dutchess County, where he was elected and re-elected to the state senate. Here he earned a reputation for political independence and progressive social legislation. In 1911 he championed Woodrow Wilson for the Presidency, worked hard for his nomination and election, and accepted the post of Assistant Secretary of the Navy, which he held from 1913 to 1921. He was the "unwearying advocate" of naval preparedness, espousing policies which he later magnified. A vocal proponent of American membership in the League of Nations, he was nominated for the Vice-Presidency and defeated with James M. Cox in 1920. The next year Roosevelt was stricken with infantile paralysis; his recovery was due as much to his courage as to the therapy of Warm Springs, Georgia.

Now began a cordial association with Alfred E. Smith of New

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