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James Roosevelt II

Born December 23, 1907 - Died August 13, 1991

James Roosevelt II was an American politician and businessman.

Roosevelt was born December 23rd, 1907 in New York City. He attended the Potomac School and the National Cathedral School in Washington, D.C. He also attended the Groton School an Episcopal college preparatory boarding school, located in Groton, Massachusettes. After graduating from Groton, he attended Harvard University, graduating in 1930. After graduating he enrolled in Boston Univerisity Law School. He only attend one year.

While attending Boston University, Roosevelt worked for a Boston insurance agent. He found the business very lucrative. In 1932 he established his own firm with John A. Sargent. They called the firm Roosevelt and Seargent. Roosevelt was the president of the company. He resigned in 1937.

Starting in 1924, Roosevelt was busy with poltiics. He attended the 1924 Democratic Convention. In 1932, he headed his father's, Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR), presidential campaign in Massachusettes. In 1933, he was a delegate from Massachusettes to the Constitutional Convention to repeal prohibition.

Roosevelt became a close protege of Joseph P. Kennedy Sr., father of President John F. Kennedy. Many of Roosevelt's controversial business dealings were aided by Kennedy. From 1933 to 1935, Rooselvelt was involved with the National Grain Yeast Corporation. Because of his involvement, Treasury Secretary Henry Morgenthau, Jr threatened to resign unless FDR directed Roosevelt to resign from the Corporation. The coporation was suspected of being a front for bootlegging.

In 1936, FDR's Presidential Secretary passed away and Roosevelt unoffically took over his duties. After the 1936 elections, Roosevelt was given a direct commission to lieutenant colonel in the Marine Corps causing public controversy. In 1937, he was officially be appointed as "administrative assistant to the President." Later the same year he was appointed Secretary to the President. He became one of his fathers most important counselors. Time magazine called him "Assistant President of the United States".

In 1938, Roosevelt resigned under public pressure when he was accused of using his political position to steer lucrative business to his insurance company.

After leaving the White House, Roosevelt moved to California and was briefly involved with the movie business. He became involved with Joseph Schenck, a movie mogul who funneled mob money to the Democratic party. When Schenck was arrested and jailed, Roosevelt tried to get his father to pardon him. It was Henry Morgenthau, Jr who, once again, stopped the pardon.

In 1939, FDR sent Roosevlet on an around the World mission to assure allies the United States intended to get involved in World War II. After the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Roosevelt went on active duty, this time as a captain. He fought in various battles in the South Pacific.

After the war, Roosevelt ran for various local offices without luck. Eventually he was elected to the United States House of Representatives serving from 1955 to 1965. He was one of the first politicians to denounce Senator McCarthy's tactics. He was also the only Representative to vote against funding the House Un-American Activities Committee. He resigned from Congress in 1965 when he was appointed by Lyndon B. Johnson as a delegate to the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). He resigned from the position in 1966 to return to the private sector.

In the early 1970's, Roosevelt's politcal affiliation shifted. He became close friends with Richard Nixon and supported his 1972 campaign. The two remained close until Nixon's passing. He also supported Reagan in the 1980's.

Roosevelt passed away in 1991 in California. He passed away from complications arising from a stroke and Parkinson's disease.

Roosevelt was a member of Architect's Lodge No. 519 in New York City, New York.

This article provided by Brother Eric C. Steele.