Jason Crane

poet & interviewer

FDR Library & Museum in desperate straits

The New York Times reported recently that the FDR Presidential Library and Museum is in serious disrepair. In fact, conditions are so bad that the irreplaceable collections of documents from FDR’s presidency are endangered.

The Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum at Hyde Park, N.Y., the nation’s first presidential library, is literally falling apart. The roof leaks, the basement floods, asbestos is flaking from old steam pipes, an ancient electrical system could send the whole place up in smoke. This sorry situation is an insult to the person the library and museum honor: the founder of the New Deal, the greatest investment in our nation’s modern development.

The FDR Library and Museum has quickly become one of my favorite places in the country. I’ve been there several times now, most recently last weekend when my cousin Lynne and I went to see FDR’s grandson, Curtis Roosevelt, speak about his years in the White House.

Even more than Curtis Roosevelt’s talk, though, my main reason for going was to be inspired. Every time I go there I get a fresh dose of fire in the belly. After Obama was elected, I had a strong desire to go and stoke the flames again.

It’s vitally important that we protect our national history and FDR’s legacy. Please contact your representatives and senators and urge them to fund the restoration of the FDR Presidential Library and Museum. Thank you.

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