Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt’s Wedding Anniversary
MO 1968.25.33 – Usher’s Stickpin
MO 19188.8.131.52-3 – Wedding Veil Lace
MO 1948.80.3 – Artificial Orange Blossoms
MO 1968.25.53 – Lace Handkerchief
On March 17, 1905, after a year and a half long engagement, Franklin Delano Roosevelt married Anna Eleanor Roosevelt. The 20-year-old bride was escorted down the aisle by her uncle, then President of the United States, Theodore Roosevelt. The ceremony took place at the New York City home of Eleanor’s great uncle and aunt, Edward and Margaret Livingston Ludlow. The reception took place next door at the home of her cousin, Susan Parish.
Though no photographs of the day are known to exist, several artifacts from the wedding are in the FDR Library’s museum collection. The groom’s ushers were each given a gold, diamond, and pearl stickpin (MO 1968.25.33), shown above, in the style of the Roosevelt family crest. FDR designed this pin and his daughter Anna donated it to the Library in 1967.
Also shown are pieces from Eleanor’s wedding attire, including her veil (MO 19184.108.40.206-3), which was given to her by her maternal grandmother, Mary Livingston Ludlow Hall. The veil is a Point de Gaze Belgian lace and was donated to the Library by Anna in 1948. Eleanor also wore a sprig of artificial orange blossoms in her hair (MO 1948.80.3), which she donated to the Library in 1948, and carried a lace handkerchief (MO 1968.25.53), donated by Anna in 1966.
Below are a series of images from Franklin and Eleanor’s courtship and honeymoon. These photos and hundreds more can be seen in a new exhibit opening this Spring at the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum: The Roosevelts: Public Figures, Private Lives.