Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Rare Footage Shows FDR Walking

Rare film footage featuring President Franklin D. Roosevelt walking to his seat at a baseball game helps dispel the myth that he completely hid his disability and shows the courage it took to go about his daily life, experts said Friday.

The clip shows Roosevelt, who was paralyzed from the waist down by polio in 1921, grasping a rail with one hand while being supported on the other side by an assistant. Roosevelt used a wheelchair because he could walk only with braces on his legs and the support of a cane.

Former Major League Baseball player Jimmie DeShong shot the film at the 1937 All-Star Game in Washington. On Thursday, the Pennsylvania State Archives in Harrisburg announced it had acquired the clip from the family of DeShong, a native of the state’s capital city.

The Roosevelt snippet is about eight seconds of DeShong’s silent footage, which overall is more than five minutes long.

More about FDR's and the hiding of his disability.

Jimmie DeShong motion picture film featuring Franklin Delano Roosevelt arriving by car and walking to stands during the July 7, 1937 Major League Baseball (MLB) All-Star Game at Griffith Stadium in Washington, D.C.

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