News From Our Blog

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From the National Archives:

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

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From the National Archives:

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

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From the Presidential Libraries:

It’s the Birthday of LBJ!

Lyndon Baines Johnson was born on August 27, 1908, in central Texas, not far from Johnson City, which his family had helped settle. 

In 1937 he campaigned successfully for the House of Representatives on a New Deal platform, effectively aided by his wife, the former Claudia “Lady Bird” Taylor, whom he had married after a whirlwind courtship in 1934. 

During World War II, Lyndon Johnson served briefly in the Navy as a lieutenant commander, receiving a Silver Star in the South Pacific. After six terms in the House, he was elected to the Senate in 1948. In 1953, he became the youngest Minority Leader in Senate history, and the following year, when the Democrats won control, Majority Leader. With rare legislative skill he obtained passage of a number of measures during the Eisenhower Administration. He became, by many accounts, the most powerful Majority Leader of the twentieth century.

LBJ’s “Great Society” program included aid to education, Medicare, urban renewal, beautification, conservation, development of depressed regions, control and prevention of crime and delinquency and removal of obstacles to the right to vote. Read More

Photos: 

Studio portrait of Lyndon B. Johnson at 18 months old, ca. 1910.

Portrait of President Lyndon B. Johnson in the Oval Office. December, 1963.

-from the LBJ Library 

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From PBS:

August 25, 1921: FDR is Diagnosed with Polio
On this day in 1921, Dr. Robert Lovett diagnosed 39-year-old Franklin Roosevelt with infantile paralysis, more commonly known as polio. The diagnosis came a few weeks after a fall into icy waters that left him unable to feel parts of his body and hold his own weight. 
Although there was no cure for polio at the time, FDR participated in rehabilitation classes and swimming exercises to regain his strength before re-entering politics.
Learn about FDR’s recovery process with this preview clip from Ken Burns’s The Roosevelts.
Photo: President Roosevelt in his wheelchair on the porch at Top Cottage in Hyde Park, NY with his dog, Fala, and Ruthie Bie, granddaughter of the cottage’s caretaker. February 1941. Wikimedia Commons.

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From PBS:

August 25, 1921: FDR is Diagnosed with Polio

On this day in 1921, Dr. Robert Lovett diagnosed 39-year-old Franklin Roosevelt with infantile paralysis, more commonly known as polio. The diagnosis came a few weeks after a fall into icy waters that left him unable to feel parts of his body and hold his own weight.

Although there was no cure for polio at the time, FDR participated in rehabilitation classes and swimming exercises to regain his strength before re-entering politics.

Learn about FDR’s recovery process with this preview clip from Ken Burns’s The Roosevelts.

Photo: President Roosevelt in his wheelchair on the porch at Top Cottage in Hyde Park, NY with his dog, Fala, and Ruthie Bie, granddaughter of the cottage’s caretaker. February 1941. Wikimedia Commons.

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From the Presidential Libraries:

John F. Kennedy at St. Mark’s Cathedral in Venice while on a trip to Europe with LeMoyne Billings in August 1937. From the JFK Library

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From the Presidential Libraries:

John F. Kennedy at St. Mark’s Cathedral in Venice while on a trip to Europe with LeMoyne Billings in August 1937. 

From the JFK Library

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From the Presidential Libraries:

White House Renovation, 1947-1952: The Red Room 

Shortly after moving into the White House, President Harry S. Truman noticed the signs of a building under serious physical stress.  Early in 1948, in response to the President’s concerns, engineering reports confirmed that the White House was in a serious state of disrepair.

Burned to the exterior walls in 1814, further compromised by the successive additions of indoor plumbing, gas lighting, electric wiring, heating ducts, and major modifications in 1902 and 1927, some said the White House was standing only from the force of habit.

The decision was made to move the Trumans across the street into the Blair House for three years while the White House underwent a complete reconstruction within its original exterior walls. 

The Truman Library is documenting the renovation of the White House on HistoryPin.  Take a tour through time with historic photos set against the contemporary setting of the Red Room.  So cool!