32nd President of the United States (1933-1945); he was the only United States president elected for four terms, he was one of the 20th century's most skilful political leaders guiding the nation for 12 years. His New Deal programme was a response to the Great Depression. Then, in World War II, he led the Allies in their defeat of the Axis powers. Although he was crippled by polio at age 39, he continued his political career, which spanned 35 years.
Born at Hyde Park, New York, on January 30, 1882, he was the only child of James Roosevelt and Sara Delano Roosevelt. His father was a cousin of Theodore Roosevelt, the 26th president of the United States. Although they were not wealthy, the Roosevelts of Hyde Park led a comfortable existence, and young Franklin's life was sheltered. A handsome youth, he was an excellent athlete, expert at boating and swimming, and he also collected stamps, birds, and model ships-hobbies that he pursued all his life.
His formal education began at the Groton School in Massachusetts. After graduation from Harvard University in 1904, Roosevelt attended Columbia University Law School without taking a degree and was admitted to the New York State bar in 1907. In 1905 he married a distant cousin, Eleanor Roosevelt.
The Beginning of Roosevelt's Political Career
Franklin Roosevelt's political career began with his election to the New York State Senate as a Democrat in 1910. He quickly gained attention as the leader of an upstate coalition that fought the influence of New York's Democratic machine (the Tammany Society). His support of Woodrow Wilson's candidacy as the Democratic presidential nominee in 1912 resulted in his appointment to the post of Assistant Secretary of the Navy, which he held during World War I. Roosevelt faced the greatest personal crisis of his life when he was stricken by poliomyelitis at his Canadian summer home on Campobello Island, New Brunswick, in 1921. He rejected his mother's advice that he abandon politics and become a country squire at Hyde Park. Encouraged by Eleanor, he resumed his career by nominating Alfred E. Smith for the presidency at the Democratic convention in 1924. In 1928, Roosevelt won a narrow victory in a campaign for the governorship in New York State.
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Franklin Delano Roosevelt biography
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