Friday, September 19, 2014
Tuesday, September 16, 2014
As La Guardia looks on, President Roosevelt
signs proclamation naming December 15 as
‘Bill of Rights Day’ at the White House, 1941
At rally to fight for enactment of Fair Employment Practices Act, La Guardia speaks with FEP committee co-chairman A. Philip Randolph and Eleanor Roosevelt, 1946
Steven A. Levine
Coordinator for Educational Programs
This past Sunday, PBS began airing “The Roosevelts: An Intimate History,” Ken Burns’s documentary about the lives of Theodore, Franklin, and Eleanor Roosevelt. In 1934 FDR gained a great ally when Fiorello La Guardia became mayor of New York City. La Guardia defeated Tammany Hall and brought clean and efficient government to NYC, while successfully creating a direct relationship to the White House to fund New Deal projects. La Guardia, the son of immigrants, came from a humble background, while Eleanor and Franklin descended from one of America’s oldest families. They nevertheless developed close political friendships, based on shared goals. Under La Guardia’s leadership, New York City used New Deal funds to employ hundreds of thousands to build highways, subways, schools, hospitals, parks, housing and other infrastructure.
The importance of the relationship between La Guardia and Franklin and Eleanor can be found in the La Guardia and Wagner Archives’ collection, containing 16 photos of Eleanor and 20 photos of Franklin. If you would like to learn more about La Guardia, the Roosevelts and the New Deal, please feel free to contact me
President Roosevelt, Governor Lehman, and Mayor La Guardia campaign together in the 1940 election campaign.
La Guardia,head of joint U.S.-Canada Defense Board, meets with President Roosevelt and military brass at the White House, 1940
La Guardia, union leader Sidney Hillman,and Eleanor Roosevelt talking at a dinner honoring Eleanor at the Hotel Commodore, 1941
La Guardia and FDR at the annual Roosevelt Picnic at Hyde Park, NY, 1938
Friday, September 5, 2014
elementary school in Brooklyn, April 8, 2002.
Council member Bill de Blasio and P.S. 39 principal
Anita de Paz applaud with first and second grade artists,
at children's art exhibition, May 12, 2008
From 2002 to 2009, Bill de Blasio represented the 39th Council District in the Council of the City of New York. The LaGuardia and Wagner Archives houses his Council member papers, which consist of Constituent Correspondence, Departmental Correspondence, Photographs, Committee Files, and Legislative Files on education, housing, and land use. Most significantly, we have identified the papers in his collection that document his dedication to improving the quality of public education in New York City, epitomized by his role in building the P.S. 160 Annex in Borough Park, Brooklyn. (Click here to view documents related to the P.S. 160 Annex.)
In 2008, de Blasio, an education activist who earlier had been elected to his local school board, responded to his constituents’ growing concerns about the overcrowding of P.S. 160 in Borough Park. He rallied the Department of Education, fellow politicians, and local residents to build an annex to P.S. 160. The school was originally built in 1904 for only 500 students, but by 2008 housed 821 students, or 137% of its intended capacity. Built to be handicap accessible, the five story annex houses labs, classrooms for the upper grades, an auditorium, a library, a gymnasium and serves as a community center for the neighborhood.