Some interesting facts about Eleanor Roosevelt include: her father was an alcoholic, she was the first First Lady to become an active participant in her husband's politics and she knew Franklin Roosevelt as a child. Eleanor Roosevelt was also a humanitarian activist during, before and after her husband's presidency.Continue Reading
Eleanor Roosevelt first met her husband as a child, and they were fifth cousins once removed. Rather than tackling the First Lady role as a social hostess, she chose to get involved in politics. Subsequent first ladies have followed her example.
Prior to becoming the First Lady she volunteered as a teacher in immigrant communities, and promoted African American rights during her husband's presidency. Following his death, she continued her humanitarian work by acting as a United Nations representative.
Following her husband's affair with Lucy Mercer, she offered him a divorce, but he rejected her suggestion as he worried it would damage his career. During and after the second world war, Eleanor Roosevelt encouraged her husband to further the New Deal to help veterans, and she campaigned for European immigrant rights.
Despite suffering from aplastic anemia and tuberculosis in the 2 years before she died, Eleanor Roosevelt continued working as a women's rights and civil rights activist.Learn more about US History