One of the most loved first ladies of all time, Eleanor Roosevelt changed the expectations around the role that the president's wife played in the White House at a time when married women were expected to give up their careers and stand by their husbands. She was a political and social activist who had very strong opinions about racial issues and gender equality. In fact, President Harry S. Truman once referred to her as the "First Lady of the World" for the dedication with which she championed for human rights.
Eleanor overcame a difficult childhood, stood up to her adversarial mother-in-law, and redefined what it meant to be a first lady. When her husband died, instead of fading into the background, she continued her work in politics. She went on to become the United States Delegate to the United Nations General Assembly from 1945 to 1952, and she was also the first chair of the UN Commission on Human Rights and the chair of the John F. Kennedy administration's Presidential Commission on the Status of Women.
Eleanor left a powerful legacy and a blueprint for those who would follow in her footsteps as first lady. And, while many people are aware of her political accomplishments, there are several fascinating facts about Eleanor's life that you may not know (and incase that's not enough, here are a plethora of great quotes from Eleanor Roosevelt).
Her Parents Died Tragically And She Became An Orphan
She Held Press Conferences At The White House Exclusively For Female Reporters
She Was Friends With Amelia Earhart, Who Planned To Teach The First Lady How To Fly
She Was A Prolific Writer
Franklin Roosevelt Cheated On Eleanor With Her Secretary
She Was Very Tall And Athletic