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Hunter College has received an invaluable donation of historic importance—15 original, handwritten letters from Franklin Delano Roosevelt to his close friend and distant cousin Margaret (Daisy) Suckley that have never before been publicly displayed. The letters were generously donated to the Roosevelt House Public Policy Institute at Hunter College by philanthropists Roger and Susan ( ’65) Hertog.
"We are honored and delighted that the Hertogs have chosen to give these remarkable FDR letters to our cherished Roosevelt home," said Jennifer J. Raab, president of Hunter College. "The letters will be important for future scholarly research, and they are also interesting and fun for non-scholars to see a more personal side—candid, vulnerable, and human—of the longest serving American president."
“This is a remarkable collection of letters from FDR to Daisy Suckley, who was a close confidante and trusted companion of Roosevelt—many believe even more than a confidante,” said Harold Holzer, the Jonathan F. Fanton Director of Roosevelt House. “Documenting Suckley’s importance as a confidante, these letters share fascinatingly frank language about the people and events of the day, the likes of which FDR shared with so few.”
The collection covers nearly the entire Roosevelt presidency, from October 22, 1934, through May 2, 1944. Among other points of interest, they provide documentation of Suckley’s visits to FDR at the White House, in Hyde Park, and other locales.
Roosevelt House will display all the original letters in a special exhibit, titled “Affectionately, F.D.R.,” curated by Roosevelt House Historian Deborah Gardner. It is open free to the public from May 8 through May 31, Mondays through Saturdays, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., and during evening events.