Relationship Quotes For Her BiographySource(google.com.pk)
Eleanor Roosevelt was born October 11, 1884 into a family of lineage, wealth, and uncommon sadness. The first child of Anna Hall Roosevelt and Elliott Roosevelt, young Eleanor encountered disappointment early in life. Her father, mourning the death of his mother and fighting constant ill health, turned to alcohol for solace and was absent from home for long periods of time engaged in either business, pleasure or medical treatment. Anna Hall Roosevelt struggled to balance her disillusionment with her husband with her responsibilities toward Eleanor and Eleanor's younger brother, Hall. As the years passed, the young mother became increasingly disconsolate.
An astute and observant child, Eleanor rarely failed to notice the tension between her parents and the strain that it placed on both of them. By the time she was six, Eleanor assumed some responsibility for her mother's happiness, recalling later in her autobiography This Is My Story that "my mother suffered from very bad headaches, and I know now that life must have been hard and bitter and a very great strain on her. I would often sit at the head of her bed and stroke her head . . . for hours on end."
Yet this intimacy was shortlived. Anna Hall Roosevelt, one of New York's most stunning beauties, increasingly made young Eleanor profoundly self-conscious about her demeanor and appearance, even going so far as to nickname her "Granny" for her "very plain," "old fashioned," and serious deportment. Remembering her childhood, Eleanor later wrote, "I was a solemn child without beauty. I seemed like a little old woman entirely lacking in the spontaneous joy and mirth of youth."
Her mother's death in 1892 made Eleanor's devotion to her father all the more intense. Images of a gregarious, larger than life Elliott dominated Eleanor's memories of him and she longed for the days when he would return home. She adored his playfulness with her and the way he loved her with such uncritical abandon. Indeed, her father's passion only underscored the isolation she felt when he was absent. Never the dour child in his eyes, Eleanor was instead his "own darling little Nell." Hopes for a happier family life were dashed however when Elliott Roosevelt died of depression and alcoholism nineteen months later. At the age of ten, Eleanor became an orphan and her grandmother, Mary Hall, became her guardian.
Eleanor's life with Grandmother Hall was confining and lonesome until Mrs. Hall sent Eleanor to attend Allenswood Academy in London in 1899. There Eleanor began to study under the tutelage of Mademoiselle Marie Souvestre, a bold, articulate woman whose commitment to liberal causes and detailed study of history played a key role in shaping Eleanor's social and political development. The three years that Eleanor spent at Allenswood were the happiest years of her adolescence. She formed close, lifelong friendships with her classmates; studied language, literature and history; learned to state her opinions on controversial political events clearly and concisely; and spent the summers traveling Europe with her headmistress, who insisted upon seeing both the grandeur and the squalor of the nations they visited. Gradually she gained "confidence and independence" and later marveled that she was "totally without fear in this new phase of my life," writing in her autobiography that "Mlle. Souvestre shocked one into thinking, and that on the whole was very beneficial." Her headmistress’s influence was so strong that as an Eleanor later described Souvestre was one of the three most important influences on her life.
When Eleanor returned to her family's West 37th Street home in 1902 to make her debut, she continued to follow the principles that Souvestre instilled in her. While she dutifully obeyed her family's wishes regarding her social responsibilities, she also joined the National Consumers League and, as a member of the Junior League for the Promotion of Settlement Movements, volunteered as a teacher for the College Settlement on Rivington Street. Her commitment to these activities soon began to attract attention and Eleanor Roosevelt, much to her family's chagrin, soon became known within New York reform circles as a staunch and dedicated worker. That summer, as she was riding the train home to Tivoli for a visit with her grandmother, Eleanor was startled to find her cousin Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR), then a student at Harvard, also on the train. This encounter reintroduced the cousins and piqued their interest in one another. After a year of chance meetings, clandestine correspondence, and secret courtship, the two Roosevelts became engaged on November 22, 1903. Fearing that they were too young and unprepared for marriage, and believing that her son needed a better, more prominent wife, Franklin's mother, Sara Delano Roosevelt, planned to separate the couple and demanded that they keep their relationship secret for a year. Sara Roosevelt's plans did not work, and after a sixteen-month engagement, Anna Eleanor Roosevelt married Franklin Delano Roosevelt on March 17, 1905. President Theodore Roosevelt, who was in town for the St. Patrick's Day parade, gave the bride, his niece, away. The wedding made the front page of the New York Times.