Wednesday, January 30, 2013
January 30, 1882, is the birthdate of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who would eventually be known by his three initials. FDR was born an only child at Hyde Park, in New York’s Hudson Valley, to parents who were sixth cousins, both from old-line, wealthy families. His mother, Sara Delano, dominated his life and once declared, "My son Franklin is a Delano, not a Roosevelt at all." In 1905 he married his fifth cousin, Eleanor Roosevelt (niece of the President, Theodore), over the objections of Sara. In the next 11 years the couple had six children, though Eleanor was deeply averse to sexual relations. In 1918 Eleanor discovered Franklin’s affair with her own social secretary, Lucy Mercer. She offered him a divorce, but Sara refused to allow it, saying she "would not give him another dollar." Franklin promised never to see Lucy again, but she was with him when he died in 1945. Pictured: FDR ca. 1900 and in 1911.