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NY - Hyde Park: Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library - Arthur Ross Courtyard - FDR Bust
Image by wallyg
Gleb W. Derujinsky's white Westerly granite bust of President Franklin D. Roosevelt was presented by the International Ladies' Garment Workers Union on January 30, 1947. The 27 1/2" tall bust depicts Roosevelt dressed in a jacket and tie and is installed on a 55 3/4"-high black Swedish granite base. Today the sculpture stands in the Arthur Ross Courytard, which was dedicated on October 1, 1996
The Franklin D. Roosevelt Library, located on Franklin D. Roosevelt National Historic Site, is the first of the United States' presidential libraries. The 16-acre facility was built during 1939-40 by Philadelphia contractor John McShain of Hudson Valley fieldstone in local Dutch colonial style. Conceived of and donated by President Roosevelt, the library was built at a cost of 6k and turned over to the federal government on July 4, 1940 to be operated by the National Archives. The museum section of the building opened June 30, 1941. However, the onset of World War II deferred the official opening of the library as a research facility as the President served a third term and then was elected to a fourth term in 1944. He visited the library often during the war to sort and classify his records and memorabilia; and from his study in the library he delivered several of his famous radio speeches or "fireside chats".
In addition to artifacts from the lives of President and Mrs. Eleanor Roosevelt, the Library includes papers from all Roosevelt’s political offices—New York State Senator (1910-13), Assistant Secretary of the Navy (1913-19), Governor of New York (1929-32), and President of the United States (1933-45) and his private collections of papers, books, and memorabilia on the history of the U.S. Navy and Dutchess County, as well as his White House Desk and 1936 Ford Phaeton. As per the President’s original vision, two wings in memory of Eleanor Roosevelt, which would house her more than three million pages of papers, were added in 1971.
Prior to Roosevelt's Presidency, the final disposition of Presidential papers was left to chance. Although a valued part of the nation's heritage, the papers of chief executives were private property which they took with them upon leaving office. Some were sold or destroyed and thus either scattered or lost to the nation forever. Others remained with families, but inaccessible to scholars for long periods of time. The fortunate collections found their way into the Library of Congress and private repositories. In erecting his library, Roosevelt created an institution to preserve intact all his papers. Roosevelt's actions served as a precedent. When Congress passed the Presidential Libraries Act in 1955, it regularized the procedures initiated by President Roosevelt for privately built and federally maintained libraries to preserve the papers of future Presidents. Even though official presidential papers are now public property as a result of the Presidential Records Act of 1978, and there is legislation limiting the size and financing of museums, Roosevelt's original intentions of preserving papers in one place and making them accessible to the nation still hold true.
National Register #66000056 (1966)
Philadelphia - Old City: Independence Hall - Bell Tower
Image by wallyg
Independence Hall, on Chestnut Street between 5th and 6th Streets, was built by Edmund Woolley and Andrew Hamilton, the Speaker of the Pennsylvania Assembly, in 1753 as the Pennsylvania State House. But it was the events that took place between 1775 and 1787 that earned it the name Independence Hall, and reinforce its iconic status as the Birthplace of the Nation. It is within its walls that the delegates to the Second Continental Congress met, the Declaration of Independence was approved, and the Constitution of the United States was debated, drafted and signed.
Construction on the redbrick Georgian style building, at the time the most ambitious public work in the colonies, began in 1732. The five-part plan included a 105-foot long main block, two covered arcades, and two 50-foot long wing buildings at the end of the arcades. The Provincial government paid for construction as it went along--piecemeal for 21 years. The building has undergone many restorations, notably by Greek revival architect John Haviland in 1830, and by a committee from the National Park Service, in 1950, returning it to its 1776 appearance. The bell tower, consisting of a wooden steeple set atop the three-story brick house, was the original home of the Liberty Bell and today holds the Centennial Bell, created for the United States Centennial Exposition in 1876.
From 1775 to 1783, the Hall served as the principal meeting place of the Second Continental Congress, a body of a body of representatives from each of the thirteen colonies. The Declaration of Independence, which was authored by Thomas Jefferson and declared the unified colonies independent of the Kingdom of Great Britain, was approved there on July 4, 1776, though the vote was held two days earlier and the Declaration was read aloud to the public in the area now known as Independence Square. On June 14, 1775, delegates nominated George Washington as commander of the Continental Army; and on July 26, they appointed Benjamin Franklin the first Postmaster General of what would later become the United States Post Office Department.
During September of 1777, Philadelphia was occupied by the British Army, and the Continental Congress was forced to abandon the State House and flee to York, Pennsylvania where the Articles of Confederation were approved in November. The Congress returned on July 2, 1778, after the end of the British occupation.
In the summer of 1787, Independence Hall hosted the Philadelphia Convention, now also known as the Constitutional Convention. The original intent was to discuss adjustments to the Articles of Confederation, but the Convention decided to propose a rewritten Constitution, resulting in a new fundamental government design. On September 17, 1787, the Constitution was completed, and took effect on March 4, 1789, when the new Congress met for the first time in New York's Federal Hall.
In 1790, the Congress moved back into Philadelphia and first met in Congress Hall, the small adjoining east east wing. Philadelphia would remain the seat of the federal government until 1800, with Independence Hall serving as the Capitol Building with executive offices, and the Supreme Court assembling in Old City Hall, the small adjoining west wing. These three buildings, together with Philosophical Hall, today make up Independence Square.
Here the first foreign minister to visit the United States was welcomed; the news of Cornwallis's defeat was announced, signaling the end of the Revolutionary War; and, later, John Adams and Abraham Lincoln lay in state. On October 26, 1918, Tomáš Masaryk proclaimed the independence of Czechoslovakia on the steps of Independence Hall. On July 4, 1962, President John F. Kennedy gave an address here on Independence Day.
Independence Hall is pictured on the back of the U.S. 0 bill, as well as the bicentennial Kennedy half dollar. The Assembly Room is pictured on the reverse side of the U.S. two dollar bill, from the original painting by John Trumbull entitled Declaration of Independence.
Independence National Historical Park preserves several sites associated with the American Revolution. Administered by the National Park Service, the 45-acre park was authorized in 1948, and established on July 4, 1956.
Independence Hall was designated a World Heritage Site on October 24, 1979.
Independence National Park Historic District National Register #66000675 (1966)