Franklin D. Roosevelt 1929 Typed Letter Signed as NY Governor – Great Warm Springs Content


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32nd President.  Two-page typed letter signed (TLS) “FDR”  as Governor of New York, February 3, 1929, two separate “State of New York / Executive Chamber / Albany” pages, 8.5×10.5, regarding the polio treatment center at Warm Springs, with personal content regarding its operation and responding to criticism of it during a time of rapid growth for the center, prompting enhanced scrutiny.  FDR writes to his physical therapist Helena Mahoney, in full:

I have been meaning to write to you ever since I got to Albany but I seem to keep busy and do no personal correspondence at all.

It has been nice to have your letters and to get all of the gossip of Warm Springs. It will be even nicer to get there in April and see you all and gt away from the cold weather and the Governorship.

I am terribly pleased at the way Carp seems to have taken hold and I think it is going to be a great success.

Isn’t it thrilling to have a waiting list and so many applications coming every day? It keeps Marguerite fairly busy telling people to write to Dr. Hubbard. 

I am enclosing a letter from Senator Couzens which I know will make you and the Doctor just as furious as it has made us. I wish something could be done with Dr. Kidner to prevent him from criticising everything we do at Warm Springs without ever having been down or even having sent down a representative. Don’t you love his expression ‘rich patients’ – who does he mean? Also I know you will be pleased to hear what the psychology of the treatment is! 

From what I hear I doubt very much that Douglas is coming back to Warm Springs!

James is doing wonderfully well. He certainly was a sick boy, and added to the difficulty of handling a pneumonia case, he was very tired when he got the germ so all in all he had a troublesome time. However, he sits up tomorrow for ten minutes for the first time and it is just a question now of holding him down for about ten days longer and then sending him South for a couple of weeks. You were all very nice about inquiring for him. We appreciated it tremendously, even though we did not write at the time.

I am bothered a good deal with sinus, to say nothing of the Republican Legislature, but I am going to forget all that about the first of April and swim.  Do write any time you get a minute.

Interestingly, by the end of 1929, Dr. Frederick C. Kidner was brought on as a consultant to Warm Springs, perhaps following the adage of keeping one’s friends close and enemies closer.