First Lady Anna Eleanor Roosevelt (1884-1962), born on this day to a wealthy New York family, was a shy and self-conscious child who was orphaned by age 10.
"I think somehow we learn who we really are and then live with the decision," she said. Marrying her distant cousin Franklin in 1905, she helped him deal with crippling polio and win the Presidency in 1932.
"No one can make you feel inferior without your consent," she said, a champion for human rights.
Determined to make the world a better place, she used her position as First Lady to help others by passionately fighting for social justice for the poor, young, and blacks.
Called a "leader of the depossessed," she once explained, "You get more joy out of the giving to others, and should put a good deal of thought into the happiness you are able to give."
First Lady... Mother of six... United Nation delegate... Champion of human rights... Writer... Humanitarian. The scope of her achievements is truly remarkable.
"Do not stop thinking of life as an adventure," she said. "You have no security unless you live bravely, excitingly, imaginatively; unless you can choose a challenge rather than competence."
Statesman Adlai Stevenson called her "one of God's noblest, strongest creations...She would rather light a candle than curse the darkness. And her glow has warmed the world."
More ELEANOR ROOSEVELT Quotations
So much to learn... and give... in life.