franklin-roosevelt

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February 13th 1885: Bess Truman born

On this day in 1885, the future First Lady of the United States, Bess Truman, was born in Independence, Missouri; her birth name was Elizabeth Virginia Wallace. Wallace met future president Harry Truman at Sunday school in Independence, when they were young children. Harry was immediately taken by the “beautiful curly haired girl” he met there, and spent his young life trying to win her affections, despite his crippling shyness. They began seeing eachother in 1910, and while she rejected his first proposal, the couple became engaged in November 1913. However, they did not marry until 1919, as Harry wanted to save money and then left for France to fight in the First World War. They married upon Harry’s return from the front in June 1919, and went on to have one daughter - Margaret Truman. Harry Truman entered politics in 1926, and was elected US Senator for Missouri in 1935. Truman was added to President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s ticket for the 1944 election, and duly became Vice President. However, Roosevelt died soon into his fourth term, and Truman ascended to the presidency in 1945, facing seemingly insurmountable challenges in navigating the end of the Second World War. Bess Truman reportedly disliked life in the White House and the incessant scutiny that came with being First Lady. Upon the end of his presidency, the couple returned to a quiet life in Independence. Harry Truman died in 1972 aged 88, and Bess died in 1982 aged 97, making her the longest-lived First Lady in American history. The love story of Harry and Bess Truman, spanning eighty years, is one of the most memorable details of presidential private lives.

“You still are on the pedestal where I placed you that day in Sunday school 1890. What an old fool I am.”
- Harry in a letter to Bess on June 28th 1948, their 29th anniversary

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Before 1939 no reigning British Monarch had ever set foot on American soil since America’s Independence in 1776. But that all changed when King George VI (the one that stutterer and has that movie kings speech made about him) was invited by FDR to visit. In hopes to win over the sympathy and support of the American people towards the UK for the inevitable war ahead. And it work Americans welcomed the royal couple heartily and came from all over to just get a glimpse of them. 

So I just wanted to draw the reserved slightly shy royal couple being unconformable and overwhelmed with the the american presidential overly friendly family’s big personalities.

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December 7th 1941: Attack on Pearl Harbor

On this day in 1941, just before 8 am, the Imperial Japanese Navy launched an attack on the American naval base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. After decades of escalating tensions, primarily over Japanese aggression against China, and Japanese anger over American trade sanctions, the Japanese strike on America’s Pacific Fleet still came as a surprise. In a two hour assault, hundreds of Japanese fighter planes dropped bombs and torpedoes which killed around 2,400 American soldiers and sailors, while 20 naval vessels and 200 planes were destroyed. In contrast, the Japanese suffered just 64 fatalities. The Pearl Harbor attacks were part of a larger, co-ordinated assault against American territories in Guam and the Philippines, and parts of the British Empire. While the strike certainly damaged the Pacific Fleet, vitally important aircraft carriers were spared as they were away from the base, and shipyards remained intact, allowing for swift rebuilding. The next day, following a powerful speech, President Franklin D. Roosevelt asked Congress to declare war on Japan. The legislature passed the war measure with only one dissenting vote, cast by pacifist Representative Jeannette Rankin of Montana. America’s declaration of war was immediately followed by further declarations by Japan’s Axis allies Germany and Italy against the United States. Two years in, despite initial isolationist neutrality, America was now involved in the Second World War. The entrance of the United States into the war marked a pivotal turning point in one of the bloodiest wars in human history, as the full might of the American military joined the Allied cause against the forces of Nazi Germany, fascist Italy, and imperial Japan.

“Yesterday, December 7th, 1941 - a date which will live in infamy - the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.”
- President Franklin D. Roosevelt to Congress

So President Teddy Roosevelt gave away Eleanor at her wedding but he also stole all her attention (not intentionally I don’t think). It was so bad that the only attention the couple could seem to get was when they gave Teddy a slice of their wedding cake or when he finally left the party all together. Which miffed FDR, while Eleanor didn't mind because she was use to being pushed in the background at that point in her life.

In all honestly I just wanted to try drawing young  Roosevelts 

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“Your Dad has told me that you are a stamp collector and I thought you might like to have these stamps to add to your collection.”

Letter from President Franklin Roosevelt to nine year old Bobby Kennedy on July 12, 1935

“I am going to frame your letter and I am going to keep it always in my room.”

Reply to President Roosevelt from Bobby Kennedy on July 19, 1935

[via Zinn Education Project]:

On Dec. 17, 1944, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Korematsu v. United States that the denial of civil liberties based on race and national origin was legal. Fred Korematsu (Jan. 30, 1919 – Mar. 30, 2005), a U.S. citizen and the son of Japanese immigrants, had refused to evacuate when President Roosevelt ordered the internment of Japanese-Americans during WWII. Korematsu was arrested, convicted, and sent to the Topaz Internment Camp in Utah. Korematsu unsuccessfully sued the U.S. government for violating his constitutional rights.

Learn more from: (1) Tracked in America website: http://bit.ly/18O7xUL (2) Unsung Heroes lesson for middle and high school: http://bit.ly/1guKnub (3) Of Civil Rights and Wrongs: The Fred Korematsu Story: http://to.pbs.org/18O7Ajj (4) More stories of protest of the internment in the film Conscience and the Constitution: http://bit.ly/18O7Dvu

Image courtesy of Karen Korematsu and the Korematsu Institute

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February 19th 1942: Japanese internment

On this day in 1942 US President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed executive order 9066 which allowed the military to relocate Japanese-Americans to internment camps. Japanese-Americans were considered a national threat due the attack on Pearl Harbour which prompted the US to join World War Two. Other groups were also detained, but it was Japanese-Americans who were mostly targeted, with 120,000 being held in camps. In Korematsu v. United States (1944), the Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the executive order. Those interned suffered great material and personal losses, with most losing a lot of property and some losing their lives to illness or the violence of sentries. The victims and their families eventually received an official government apology in 1988 and reparations began in the 1990s.

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HISTORY’S THE WORLD WARS

In the 31 years between 1914 and 1945, over 100 million people were killed in the deadliest fighting the world has ever seen. The world wars were a time of ruthless tyrants, but also legendary heroes. An era when a single generation of men determined the fate of all mankind.

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October 11th 1884: Eleanor Roosevelt born

On this day in 1884 Eleanor Roosevelt was born in New York City. She married her cousin Franklin D. Roosevelt, the future President, in 1905. Eleanor was actively involved in her husband’s political career, and encouraged him to continue in politics after his partial paralysis from polio in 1921. Franklin was elected President of the United States in 1932 and served as President from 1933 until his death in 1945. Eleanor was a very active First Lady, openly campaigning for greater rights for women and African Americans. After FDR’s death, Eleanor was a US delegate to the United Nations, and chaired the UN Commission on Human Rights. In this capacity she oversaw the creation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Eleanor Roosevelt died in 1962 aged 78.

World War II Begins Seventy Five Years Ago:

Bedside Note of President Franklin D. Roosevelt Regarding the Invasion of Poland by Germany, 09/01/1939

In the early morning of September 1, 1939, German tanks crossed the German-Polish border—sparking World War II. Five hours later, at 3:05 A.M. local time, President Franklin D. Roosevelt received a phone call from Ambassador William C. Bullitt in Paris, who relayed the news from Ambassador Anthony Biddle in Warsaw. After notifying the military, FDR jotted down this bedside note.

via DocsTeach