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 Franklin Roosevelt Presidential Papers

FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT
 PRESIDENTIAL PAPERS

35,923 pages of Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Papers. Sections include:

FDR - IMPORTANT DOCUMENTS COLLECTION
DOMESTIC AND POLITICAL SUBJECTS
SOCIAL SECURITY ACT KEY DOCUMENTS
LAST PRESS CONFERENCES
FDR SPEECHES
MORGENTHAU PRESIDENTIAL DIARIES
GERMAN DIPLOMATIC FILES
FDR - CHURCHILL CORRESPONDENCES
PEARL HARBOR FDR PAPERS
FDR - STALIN CORRESPONDENCES
SAFE FILES
VATICAN DIPLOMATIC FILES

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FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT IMPORTANT DOCUMENTS COLLECTION

A curated selection of 200 pages of documents covering important events in the life and presidency of Franklin D. Roosevelt. Selected from several different archive collections, These documents possess significant historic, iconic, or research value. The files date from 1882 to 1962.

Highlights from this collection include:

FDR's January 20, 1882 birth announcement;

An 1896 letter written by FDR to his parents while he was a student at Groton;

Documents and drafts related to FDR's "Bombshell Memorandum" to the London Economic Conference, July 3, 1933, in which he denounces currency stabilization and rejects an agreement with Britain and France to do so;

Statement of the President upon signing the Social Security Bill, August 14, 1935;

FDR's handwritten burial instructions;

Draft statement on Kristallnacht, November 15, 1938;

Letter from Albert Einstein to FDR, August 2, 1939 regarding the possibility of the development of a nuclear weapon by Germany;

A handwritten bedside note re: the German invasion of Poland, September 1, 1939;

Notes and drafts of the Annual Message to Congress "Four Freedoms Speech," January 6, 1941

Memorandum for the President regarding the attack at Pearl Harbor, December 7, 1941;

Draft No. 1 of Message to Congress Requesting Declaration of War, "Day of Infamy Speech";

Correspondence between FDR and M.K. Gandhi regarding Indian independence and World War II;

February 1, 1943 letter, FDR to Mr. and Mrs. T.F. Sullivan regarding the death of their five sons, during the war;

Letter, Joseph Stalin to FDR regarding a second front, June 11, 1943;

Draft Press Release, Statement by the President regarding the Holocaust, April 3, 1944;

Tube Alloys Memorandum b/w FDR and Churchill, September 18, 1944, on atomic weapon cooperation between the United States and Britain.



DOMESTIC AND POLITICAL SUBJECTS COLLECTION

A collection of 6,158 pages of selected files from the FDR Presidential Library collection, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Papers as President: The President's Secretary's File (PSF), 1933-1945. This collection includes routine files on government agencies, members of the Executive Office of the President, and other public officials and personal friends.

File subjects in this collection include:

Dean Acheson, Amusing Things and Anecdotes, Anglo-American Oil Agreement, Antarctic Expedition, Bills in Congress, Campaign File, Coal Strike 1939, Congress, Conservation, Democratic National Committee, Democratic Platform, Thomas E Dewey, Bibb Graves (Scottsboro Boys Case), Drought Conference, Federal Reserve, Joseph P. Kennedy, National Defense, Politics, Power of the President, Public Opinion Polls, Public Works Administration, Repeal of the 18th Amendment (Prohibition), James Roosevelt, Kermit Roosevelt, Social Security, Strikes, Supreme Court, Taxes, Harry S Truman, United Nations, United States Senate, Wendell Willkie, Walter Winchell, and more.



SOCIAL SECURITY ACT KEY DOCUMENTS

A collection of 90 pages of letters, reports, and speeches from 1934 to 1936 concerning the enactment of the Social Security Act of 1935.



FDR'S LAST FIVE PRESS CONFERENCES

37 pages of transcripts of the last five press conferences, March 9, 1945 - April 5, 1945, held by President Franklin Roosevelt before his death on April 12, 1945.



FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT SPEECHES

A curated collection of 14,500 pages of FDR speeches from 1932 to 1945. Contains speech drafts, reading copies, carbons of speeches, shorthand notes of conferences, and other speech materials.  On the drafts and reading copies often can be found hand-written edits and annotations.

The speeches range from a January 14, 1932 Democratic Victory Dinner, his first campaign style speech of 1932, to the draft of the April 13, 1945 Jackson Day address that Roosevelt never delivered because of his death the day before. The "Fireside Chats," all four Inaugural Addresses, State of the Union addresses, the Four Freedoms Speech, the "Day of Infamy" Pearl Harbor Speech, the D-Day Prayer, and hundreds of other addresses to Congress, campaign speeches, and policy addresses are included in this collection.

Also included in this collection are written messages to Congress proposing legislation and regarding vetoes.



HENRY MORGENTHAU JR. PRESIDENTIAL DIARIES

1,670 pages of Henry Morgenthau diaries related to President Roosevelt.

Henry Morgenthau Jr. became President Roosevelt's Secretary of the Treasury in January of 1934 and served in that role through the rest of FDR's presidency. He is regarded by many as the architect of the depression era financial policies known as the "New Deal." Morgenthau with the help of his secretaries kept exhaustive personal accounting of his daily activities. His diaries contain transcripts of his meetings and telephone conversations, and copies of important correspondence and memoranda that made their way to his office. After holding the position of Treasury Secretary for 12 years he produced 863 diary volumes containing 284,000 pages.

This subset of that collection is known as his "Presidential Diary." They include a chronicling of his contact with FDR including memoranda of his meetings with FDR, recollections of Cabinet meetings, and handwritten notes or chits passed between hm and his decades old friend FDR.



GERMANY:  CORRESPONDENCES FROM AMERICAN DIPLOMATS IN GERMANY

A collection of 1,010 pages of documents reporting on the governmental dealings between the United States and Germany, and current situations in Germany, over the course of Franklin D. Roosevelt's tenure in office, from 1933 to 1945. Documents include correspondences, newspaper articles, memos, interviews, reports, maps, and charts.

Correspondents include FDR, Sumner Welles, Cordell Hull, Prince Louis Ferdinand of Prussia, Harold Ickes, Lord Lothian, Henry Stimson, and others.

Topics include: interview with Adolf Hitler, German troops in demilitarized zones, Helium Act, American investments in Germany, Conversation with Reich Minister of Propaganda Dr. Goebbels, Hitler's support of Mussolini, Ill-treatment of Jews in Germany, German plans to attack Belgium, Hitler declaring war on France and England, German attacks on Norway, Suggestion of Peace Proposal, Listing of Nazi Propaganda Agencies, Suggested Post-Surrender Program for Germany, Psychological Warfare Division of SHAEF, objectives of Allied Occupation of Germany, Economic Treatment of Germany, Protection of Prisoners of War, and American policy on post-war treatment of Germany.



FDR - CHURCHILL CORRESPONDENCES

5,886 pages of correspondences between FDR and Winston Churchill. The messages date from September 1939 to April 1945.  Documents of correspondence between Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Winston Churchill from the outbreak of World War II in Europe through the United States' entry and involvement in the war, correspondences end with Roosevelt's death in April 1945. Messages include White House note cards on the handling, dissimilation, and responses to Churchill's messages.

The first message is dated September 11, 1939, when Churchill was First Lord of the Admiralty. Britain declared war against Germany on September 3, 1939. That day Churchill was named First Lord of the Admiralty, the position he held during the beginning of World War I. FDR lets Churchill know that he would be happy to hear anything he would want to tell him and that their communications could be private. In his last message to Churchill dated April 11, 1945, FDR gives his approval of a Churchill proposed message to the German government that they should provide relief from starvation to people in German occupied areas of Holland. The next day Franklin Roosevelt died.

Churchill often addressed Roosevelt as "Former Naval Person." FDR previously was Assistant Secretary of the Navy during World War I. Churchill in his first message to FDR in this collection, referring to himself as "Naval Person," tells of naval activity against Germany during the first days of war between Britain and Germany. In his last message to FDR, Churchill comments on his thoughts about the Provisional Polish Government. White House documentation does not indicate if FDR, who died the next day, ever read the message.



FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT KEY PRESIDENTIAL PAPERS RELATED TO PEARL HARBOR ATTACK

72 pages of key FDR Presidential and FDR Administration papers related to the bombing of Pearl Harbor. The papers also cover the administration's internal debate over the decision to intern Japanese Americans.

Highlights include:

A January 21, 1941 letter from Franklin Roosevelt to United States Ambassador to Japan Joseph C. Grew, explaining his belief that the war raging in Europe and the growing Japanese threat in the Pacific were all part of a "single world conflict."

An April 4, 1941 memo from Department of the Treasury official Harry Dexter White to Treasury Secretary Henry Morgenthau reflects the tension between the Navy Department, which would have to defend the United States in a war, which was concerned about Japan's growing petroleum reserves, and the State Department, which hoped that free trade in oil would prevent a war by avoiding a direct confrontation with Japan.

A July 15, 1941 memo to FDR from Army Chief of Staff General George C. Marshall summarizes an intercepted Japanese diplomatic message concerning Japan's imminent takeover of Indo-China (Vietnam) from the French Vichy regime. Japan's movement into Indo-China would prompt FDR to impose economic sanctions on Japan and ultimately shut off all exports of oil to Japan.

A December 1, 1941 memo from FDR to Secretary of State Cordell Hull and Under Secretary of State Sumner Welles. After learning about a massive Japanese troop buildup in Indo-China, President Roosevelt instructs his top diplomats to immediately learn the intentions behind the Japanese Government's latest move.

A copy of an early December 7, 1941 message from the Department of the Navy sent to President Roosevelt informing him of the attack. In his own hand, President Roosevelt has indicated the date and time he received it.

A December 7, 1941 diary entry by cabinet member Claude Wickard, gives detail about the discussions that took place at the White House in a Cabinet meeting following the attack on Pearl Harbor. Wickard notes a confrontation between the President and Secretary of State Cordell Hull over the length of Roosevelt's proposed address to Congress, which would become known as the Day of Infamy Speech, and the explosive meeting with Congressional leaders that followed.

"A date which will live in infamy" speech, includes both the reading copy of the speech and an early draft which includes copious handwritten notations and changes to one of the most famous American speeches of the twentieth century. The earlier draft shows that the line in the speech originally was, "A date which will live in world history," and later changed at the suggestion of on aid to "A date which will live in infamy."

A December 10, 1941 letter and accompanying maps sent to FDR by FBI director J. Edgar Hoover showing the locations of the 1,212 Japanese aliens considered to be disloyal or dangerous who were arrested by the Bureau within 48 hours of the attack on Pearl Harbor. Additional maps gave the locations of the 620 German and 98 Italian aliens taken into custody. This section also includes logs kept by White House personnel of the activity of President Roosevelt from December 1 to December 15, 1941.



FDR - JOSEPH STALIN CORRESPONDENCES

956 pages of correspondences between President Roosevelt and Soviet Leader Joseph Stalin, dating from May 4, 1942 to June 30, 1944.

In one of the first messages on June 17, 1942, FDR informs Stalin that intelligence shows that Japan may be preparing to attack Soviet maritime targets in the Northern Pacific. FDR stresses the importance of cooperation between the United States and the Soviet Union. FDR wrote, "In the evert of such an attack we are prepared to come to your assistance with our air power, provided suitable landing fields are available in Siberia".



PRESIDENT FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT'S "SAFE FILES"

3,780 pages of documents selected from Franklin Roosevelt's "Safe Files", dating from 1933-1945. These files consist of formerly classified materials kept locked in Franklin D. Roosevelt's White House safe, mainly from the World War II period. The Safe Files include correspondence, reports, and memoranda concerning: the Manhattan Project, the Atlantic Charter and the United Nations, the O.S.S., the War, Navy, Treasury and State Departments, Germany, Japan, Italy, Russia, China, Great Britain and France, General George Marshall, Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek , Ambassador Averell Harriman, Admiral Ernest King and Harry Hopkins, as well as the American-British Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Pacific War Council, and "Plan Dog".



VATICAN DIPLOMATIC FILES

The Vatican Files consist of 1,464 pages of wartime reports, memoranda, and correspondence between FDR, Pope Pius XII, Myron Taylor, Harold Tittman and others.

In 1939, Franklin Roosevelt decided to appoint Myron Taylor as a special envoy to the Vatican. This decision was controversial. The United States had not had any formal diplomatic representation at the Vatican in over seventy years and many Americans opposed the move claiming it was a violation of the separation of Church and State. But with Europe at war, Roosevelt felt that it was necessary for diplomatic reasons, after the Germans had overrun Poland, and the looming invasion of France. The Taylor Mission to the Vatican became an important listening post for the United States in the midst of war-torn Europe.


 

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Page from Germany, 1940-1941 RESIZE

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