Delmarva Christian Highschool
It has been said that women are similar to heroes. Throughout history, millions of women have managed to balance work, raise children, and care for their personal affairs, all while having dinner ready on the table for their hungry families. Imagine the added responsibility of being the first lady of the United States. The wife of a president must be a superhero because she represents all women in the political arena. Eleanor Roosevelt was one such superhero; an extraordinary woman who not only helped her husband run the country, but also promoted woman's rights, and advocated for African Americans.
Eleanor Roosevelt was born on October 11th, 1884. She was the niece of the twenty-sixth president, Theodore Roosevelt. Growing up, neither Eleanor's parents or their friends considered her attractive. People that knew the family often wondered how Eleanor inherited her looks since her parents were such handsome people. Like her uncle Theodore, Eleanor's father Elliot Roosevelt was a big hunter. The two men traveled all over the world hunting rare animals. Elliot Roosevelt came from a family with great wealth and societal status. He neither needed nor wanted for anything. Eleanor's mother, the former Anna Hall, had the same type of up bringing as Elliot. She came from a noteworthy ancestry. Marrying Elliot united two strong aristocratic families.(Harris, 2005)
Elliot and Anna Roosevelt had six children, Eleanor was oldest. Elliot Jr. died at age four. the youngest child, Hall, wasn't born until Eleanor was almost seven. Despite her lack of beauty, Eleanor was treated like a princess. She also had the rare privilege of being raised by a French nurse. Consequently, she learned how to speak French before she learned English. While outwardly her family seemed perfect, Eleanor's family had internal struggles. Her father was a heavy drinker. Hoping to cure her husband's terrible habit, Anna Roosevelt decided a change of scenery would be good for the family. She took the family on a trip to Europe. They ended up renting a house in Paris, France. While there, Eleanor attended a convent. Eleanor was eventually expelled because she lied to her headmaster. After a period of time, Eleanor, her mother and brother went back to America while her father stayed behind. Eleanor didn't see her father again until her mother died about a year later. Anna Roosevelt's will gave custody of the children to her mother, Mary Hall. Soon after the move to their grandmother's, Eleanor's brother died. Eleanor's father passed away soon after. Mary Hall prohibited Eleanor from visiting the Roosevelt side of the family because she thought they were unruly and frivolous. The only person that Eleanor was allowed to associate with was her uncle, Theodore. Through her connection with Theodore, Eleanor met her distant cousin Franklin, whom she later married.(Roosevelt, 1961)
At the age of fifteen , Mary Hall put Eleanor into boarding school. The headmistress liked Eleanor and began to take Eleanor under her wing and mentor her. She helped Eleanor overcome her shyness and strived to make education important to her. Eleanor was at boarding school for three years before she was ordered home by her grandmother. While at home, she was able to showed her grandmother's high society friends that she was worth listening to and developed many friendships.(Harris, 2005)
Eleanor and Franklin started corresponding with one another when Eleanor turned eighteen. While attending law school at Harvard, Franklin proposed to Eleanor. Everyone was excited about the pending marriage except for Franklin's mother, Sara Delano Roosevelt. She wanted Franklin to move back home for a couple of years, start his political career, and then settle down with someone else. Sara only agreed to the engagement if it was kept secret for a year. This began a long