Franklin D. Roosevelt Net Worth at Death – Salary, Income, Earnings

Franklin D. Roosevelt Net Worth 

Franklin D. Roosevelt had an estimated net worth of $10 million at death. Franklin D. Roosevelt and his New Deal led the nation through the Great Depression. Elected to four terms, his presidency helped ensure victory in World War II. He earned most of his income from his political career.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt was the 32nd President of the United States. FDR, as he was commonly known, led the United States through the Great Depression and World War II, greatly expanding the federal government’s powers through the New Deal, a series of programs and reforms.

Roosevelt spent much of his adult life in a wheelchair after contracting polio in 1921. As FDR served an unprecedented four terms as president, an entire generation of Americans grew up knowing no other president. Roosevelt’s social programs reimagined the role of government in Americans’ lives, and his presidency during World War II cemented the United States’ global leadership.

To calculate the net worth of Franklin D. Roosevelt, subtract all his liabilities from his total assets. Investments, savings, cash deposits, and any equity he has in a house, car, or other similar asset are included in the total assets. All debts, such as personal loans and mortgages, are included in total liabilities.

Here’s the breakdown of his net worth:

Name: Franklin D. Roosevelt
Net Worth: $10 Million
Monthly Salary: $30 Thousand
Annual Income: $400 Thousand
Source of Wealth: Politician

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Early Life and Education

Roosevelt was born in Hyde Park, New York, on January 30, 1882. As the only child of James Roosevelt and Sara Ann Delano Roosevelt, and a distant cousin of President Theodore Roosevelt, he was born into a wealthy family.

The Roosevelts were prominent for several generations, having made their fortune in real estate and trade and living at Springwood, their estate in New York State’s Hudson River Valley.

Roosevelt grew up surrounded by privilege and a sense of self-importance.

Tutors and governesses educated him until the age of 14, and the entire household revolved around him, with his mother remaining the dominant figure in his life even into adulthood. His upbringing was very different from that of the common people he would later champion.

In 1896, Roosevelt enrolled at the prestigious Episcopal preparatory school Groton School for Boys in Massachusetts. He found the experience difficult because he did not fit in with the other students. The men of Groton excelled in athletics, whereas Roosevelt did not.

He tried to please the adults and embraced Groton’s headmaster, Endicott Peabody, who encouraged students to help the less fortunate through public service.

Roosevelt entered Harvard University after graduating from Groton in 1900, determined to make a name for himself. Despite having only a “C” grade point average, he was a member of the Alpha Delta Phi fraternity, the editor of the Harvard Crimson newspaper, and received his degree in three years.

His contemporaries, on the other hand, thought he was underwhelming and average.

Roosevelt went on to study law at Columbia University Law School, where he passed the bar exam in 1907 but did not graduate. He practiced corporate law in New York for the next three years, living the typical upper-class life.

However, Roosevelt found the practice of law to be tedious and constricting. He set his sights on greater success.

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New York State Senate

Roosevelt was invited to run for the New York state senate at the age of 28 in 1910. In a district that had voted Republican for the previous 32 years, he ran as a Democrat. He won the seat in a Democratic landslide thanks to hard campaigning and the power of his name.

As a state senator in New York, Roosevelt stood up to elements of the Democratic political machine. This earned him the wrath of party leaders, but it also earned him national acclaim and valuable experience in political maneuvering and intrigue.

He formed an alliance with Louis Howe during this time, which would shape his political career for the next 25 years. In 1912, Roosevelt was re-elected to the state senate and chaired the agricultural committee, which passed farm and labor bills as well as social welfare programs.

Roosevelt supported presidential candidate Woodrow Wilson at the 1912 National Democratic Convention and was rewarded with an appointment as Assistant Secretary of the Navy, the same job Theodore Roosevelt had used to propel himself to the presidency.

Roosevelt was a dynamic and effective administrator. He specialized in business operations, collaborating with Congress to get budgets approved and systems updated, and he established the United States Naval Reserve. However, he was dissatisfied in his role as “second chair” to his boss, Secretary of the Navy Josephus Daniels, who was less enthusiastic about supporting a large and efficient naval force.

National Politics

Roosevelt decided to run for the New York Senate seat in 1914. He was doomed from the start because he lacked White House support. President Wilson relied on the Democratic political machine to pass social reforms and ensure his re-election.

He couldn’t back Roosevelt, who had made far too many enemies among New York Democrats. Roosevelt was soundly defeated in the primary election, and he learned an important lesson: national stature cannot overcome a well-organized local political organization.

Nonetheless, Roosevelt embraced Washington politics, and his career flourished as he developed more personal relationships. He accepted the vice presidential nomination as James M. Cox’s running mate at the 1920 Democratic Convention. The pair were soundly defeated in the general election by Republican Warren G. Harding, but the experience gave Roosevelt national exposure.

Roosevelt mended ties with New York’s Democratic political machine. He appeared at the Democratic National Conventions in 1924 and 1928 to support New York Governor Al Smith for President, which increased his national exposure.

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New York Governor

Outgoing New York governor Al Smith encouraged Roosevelt to run for president in 1928. Roosevelt was elected by a slim margin, and his victory gave him confidence that his political star was rising.

FDR believed in progressive government as governor and implemented a number of new social programs.

Presidential Elections

Republicans were blamed for the Great Depression following the 1929 stock market crash. Sensing an opportunity, Roosevelt launched his presidential campaign by advocating for government intervention in the economy to provide relief, recovery, and reform. In November 1932, his upbeat, positive attitude and personal charm helped him defeat Republican incumbent Herbert Hoover.

When FDR ran for a second term in 1936, he was re-elected in a landslide over Kansas Governor Alfred M. “Alf” Landon on November 3, 1936.

Roosevelt did not publicly announce his intention to run for a third term as president until early in 1940. But, in the midst of World War II, with Germany’s victories in Europe and Japan’s growing dominance in Asia, FDR privately believed that only he had the experience and skills to lead America through such adversity.

Roosevelt easily defeated all challengers at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago and received the nomination. He defeated Republican Wendell Willkie in the presidential election in November 1940.

As FDR’s third term as president came to an end, the United States was deeply involved in war, and there was no doubt that he would run for a fourth term. Roosevelt chose Missouri Senator Harry S. Truman as his running mate, and the two defeated Republican candidate Thomas E. Dewey in the 1944 presidential election, winning 36 of the 48 states.

Commander in Chief

During WWII, Roosevelt was a commander-in-chief who collaborated with, and sometimes worked around, his military advisers. He contributed to the development of a strategy for defeating Germany in Europe, beginning with an invasion of North Africa in November 1942, then Sicily and Italy in 1943, and finally the D-Day invasion of Europe in 1944.

At the same time, Allied forces in Asia and the eastern Pacific pushed back Japan. During this time, Roosevelt advocated for the establishment of the United Nations.

Roosevelt attended the Yalta Conference in February 1945, along with British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Soviet General Secretary Joseph Stalin, to discuss post-war reorganization. He then returned to the United States and the Warm Springs, Georgia sanctuary.

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Roosevelt died as a result of a massive cerebral hemorrhage on April 12, 1945. The stress of WWII had taken its toll on his health, and hospital tests in March 1944 revealed that he had atherosclerosis, coronary artery disease, and congestive heart failure.

At his death, Roosevelt was surrounded by two cousins, Laura Delano and Margaret Suckley, as well as his former mistress Lucy Mercer Rutherford (by then a widow), with whom he had maintained contact.

Within hours of Roosevelt’s death, Vice President Harry S. Truman was summoned to the White House and swore in as President. The unexpected death of FDR shook the American people to their core. Though many had noticed that he appeared tired in photographs and newsreels, no one seemed to be prepared for his death.

Personal Life

Roosevelt married Eleanor Roosevelt, his fifth cousin and Theodore Roosevelt’s niece, on March 17, 1905. The couple got engaged during Roosevelt’s final year at Harvard.

In 1914, Roosevelt began a relationship with Lucy Mercer, his wife’s social secretary, which grew into a love affair. When Eleanor discovered the affair, she gave Franklin an ultimatum to stop seeing Lucy or face divorce in 1918.

Roosevelt agreed to stop romantically seeing Mercer, but began secretly seeing him again years later. In fact, she was with him at the time of his death.

Anna, James, Franklin (who died when he was a baby), Elliott, Franklin Jr., and John were Franklin and Eleanor’s six children. Except for John, who went into business, all of the Roosevelt children went into politics and public service.

Further Reading

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