Tag: Franklin Roosevelt
On April 12, 1955, a vaccine against polio was declared safe and effective.
Jonas E. Salk’s great discovery was too late for President Franklin Roosevelt, who had contracted polio in 1921, at age 39, leaving him paralyzed from the waist down. But the President, who died in 1945, had been instrumental in funding research that eventually led to the vaccine.
Death and paralysis by polio was a very real threat in the early 20th century. Children could be confined to an iron lung if their muscles could no longer help them to breathe. In 1916 there were 27,000 cases and 6,000 deaths. And the epidemic continued to worsen: in 1952 there were 57,628 cases reported.
In 1938 Roosevelt created the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis. He had already been active in assisting victims of polio through the Georgia Warm Springs Foundation, a spa he had often visited to ease his symptoms and that he had purchased in 1926. Roosevelt raised money for this foundation through a series of balls held on his birthday. The first Birthday Ball in 1934 had 4,376 communities joining in 600 separate celebrations, and raised over a million dollars.
But the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis was funded in a different way. In 1938, radio personality Eddie Cantor encouraged Americans to give their loose change to the cause, urging listeners to create “a march of dimes to reach all the … [ Read all ]
Posted by Hilary on April 12, 2011, under Uncategorized.
Tags: Franklin D. Roosevelt, Franklin Roosevelt, infantile paralysis, Jonas Salk, March of Dimes, National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis, polio
Yesterday we celebrated Thanksgiving, as usual, on the fourth Thursday of November. Today shoppers are hitting the stores for “Black Friday” super discounts to kick off holiday shopping.
But until 1939, Thanksgiving Day was traditionally the last Thursday in November. That year there were five Thursdays in the month, and concern about a shortened shopping season prompted President Franklin Roosevelt to break tradition and move the holiday a week back. His action pleased retailers but rattled calendar makers. Read all about it in:
Posted by Mary on November 26, 2010, under - Great Depression, - World War II, Uncategorized.
Tags: american history, fdr and thanksgiving, Franklin Roosevelt, history of thanksgiving, Prologue magazine, why is thanksgiving the last thursday of november