The Only Film Of FDR At His Most Vulnerable – Withheld From The Public For Decades

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The Only Film Of FDR At His Most Vulnerable – Withheld From The Public For Decades | World War Wings Videos

Smithsonian Channel

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Last Legs.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt has often been hailed as the greatest President in the history of the United States of America. His efforts guided this nation out of a great depression and courageously into victory in World War II. He showed a great strength as President but he also had his greatest weakness, one that is rarely seen.

During his time as President few people knew about the illness that afflicted Franklin Delano Roosevelt. At age 39 FDR contracted polio which resulted in the partial paralysis of his legs and diminished ability to walk.

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In 1932 Franklin Roosevelt ran for President of the United States of America, but by this time photography and newsreel footage became prevalent forms of media. He knew that if the public became aware of his condition that it could jeopardize his chances of being elected President because the public might see him as weak. FDR arranged a deal with the media to not portray him walking or getting out of cars, so footage of his leg braces is quite rare.

“The stipulation was accepted by most reporters and photographers but periodically someone would not comply. The Secret Service was assigned to purposely interfere with anyone who tried to snap a photo of FDR in a ‘disabled or weak’ state.”

– FDR Presidential Library & Museum

This film show depicts one of those elusive images of Franklin Delano Roosevelt using his leg braces. There is still a sense of strength and determination as he presses forward to his goal as President.

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