An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church

Roosevelt, Franklin Delano

(Jan. 30, 1882-Apr. 12, 1945). Thirty-second President of the United States, 1933-1945. He was the leader of the United States in the face of the Great Depression and World War II. Roosevelt was baptized at St. James' Episcopal Church, Hyde Park, New York, and later served as senior warden of St. James'. He graduated from Groton School and Harvard. He attended Columbia University School of Law, but discontinued his schooling after he was admitted to the New York bar. He was elected to the New York State Senate in 1910 and appointed Assistant Secretary of the Navy in 1913. Roosevelt was stricken with poliomyelitis in 1921, but his illness did not prevent his career of public service. He was elected governor of New York in 1928, and reelected in 1930. Roosevelt sought to give tax relief for farmers. He sought to use the resources of the state government to help the economy. He established state relief agencies and sought to provide cheaper public utilities for consumers. He was elected president in 1932 and inaugurated in 1933. In his first inauguration address as president he urged that “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” He sought to counter the ravages of the Depression with a sweeping economic program known as the New Deal. The programs of the New Deal sought to restore farm prosperity and restore business enterprise, along with providing relief, loans, and jobs through a variety of federal agencies. Federal agencies established during this time included the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Tennessee Valley Authority, the National Recovery Administration, and the Agricultural Adjustment Administration. Roosevelt was also the first president to appoint a woman, Frances Perkins, as a member of the Cabinet. Before the United States entered World War II, Roosevelt provided assistance to Great Britain and its allies through the Lend-Lease Act. He also denied war supplies to Japan. As President of the United States during World War II, Roosevelt played a leading role in creating the alliance with Great Britain and the Soviet Union. He was reelected president in 1936, 1940, and 1944. He died in Warm Springs, Georgia.

Glossary definitions provided courtesy of Church Publishing Incorporated, New York, NY,(All Rights reserved) from “An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church, A User Friendly Reference for Episcopalians,” Don S. Armentrout and Robert Boak Slocum, editors.