Essay Eleanor Roosevelt

Submitted By Haileybyers2
Words: 959
Pages: 4

Influential First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt once said, “As for accomplishments, I just did what I had to as things came along.” She may have had many life struggles, but, Eleanor over came them, and they helped make her the hardworking and determined women she was. On the day of October 11, 1884 in New York City, parents Ann and Elliot Roosevelt welcomed their daughter Ann Eleanor Roosevelt into the world. Although it looked as though she had the perfect life with money, power, and privilege, it was the exact opposite. When she was only eight, Eleanor’s mother died from diphtheria (an upper respiratory illness), her brother Elliot died a year later from the same disease, and not even two years after that her father, who was an alcoholic, tried to commit suicide. He failed, but, died a few days later from a seizure. After all of these terrible events happened, Eleanor was prone to depression throughout her life. After her parents deaths Eleanor moved in with he grandmother, Mary Ludlow. Up until the age of fifteen, Roosevelt was tutored privately; after that, with the encouragement of her aunt, she was sent to a private school outside of London, England, Allenswood Academy. Eleanor was deeply influenced by her feminist headmistress, Marie Souvestre. Going to Allenswood allowed Eleanor to gain a lot of confidence. Her cousin, Corinne Robinson, said that at Allenswood Eleanor was loved by everybody. At the age of seventeen, Eleanor had to leave Allenswood. Her grandmother wanted her to make her debutante (When a girl has reached the age of maturity, they are introduced to society at a formal “debut”.) During the summer of her debutante, Eleanor met Franklin D. Roosevelt, her father’s fifth cousin, on a train going to Tivoli, New York. They kept their love a secret, but decided to tell people on November 22, 1903, the day they became engaged. When Franklin’s mother found out about the engagement, she was furious. She made Eleanor and Franklin promise not to officially announce the engagement to anyone for a year. In spite of his mother’s disapproval, Franklin and Eleanor were married on March 17, 1905. Eleanor and Franklin had six children, five sons and one daughter. Their third child, Franklin Jr. died at only eight months old of influenza. Although Eleanor loved her children deeply, she described how uncomfortable being a mother was when she wrote “It did not come naturally to me to understand little children or enjoy them.” Her life became even harder when on September of 1918, Eleanor was unpacking one of Franklin’s suitcases. She discovered many love letters from his secretary Lucy Mercer to him. She confronted Franklin, and even offered to divorce to divorce him, but Franklin’s mother threatened to disown him if they divorced. Eleanor forgave Franklin, yet their marriage had been torn apart. She began focusing more on her social work instead of her role as a housewife. On March 4, 1993 Franklin was inaugurated as president of the United States. This should have been a happy time for Eleanor, yet she became very depressed. She did not want to assume the role of The First Lady. So, with support from her husband, Eleanor redefined the position. She was once called “the most controversial First Lady in United States history.” She had soon accomplished many firsts as the first lady including the first to speak at a Democratic National Party convention. She also had a newspaper column called “My Day”. In her column she discussed world issues, and spread her thoughts and views of world problems to millions of Americans six days a week. One of Eleanor’s main projects during Franklin’s presidency was when she gave families of homeless miners’ homes in Arthurdale, West Virginia. Though she wanted miners of all races to be able to