FDR: Four Freedoms State Park

Being a fan of FDR this memorial was a must see for me. To get to Roosevelt Island where the memorial is located one must take a tram over the East River to Southpoint Park. It’s a 4 minute ride.

  • Cost: a metrocard ride $2.75.
  • Location: 59th Street and 2nd Avenue

And here’s the tram:

The Views:


Once on Roosevelt Island there is a free bus which can be taken to Southpoint Park the location of the memorial. OR take a 15 minute walk along the river for picturesque views of Manhattan.

As you enter the Park there is a historic Smallpox Hospital which is currently in ruin. Opened in 1856 and designed by American James Renwick, Jr. of architectural fame, this was the first hospital dedicated to the treatment of smallpox, a deadly, highly contagious viral disease.

The structure is on the National Register of Historic Places and a designated New York City Landmark.

Constructed with granite from Roosevelt Island by prison labor this hospital was multi-faceted in use and a school of nursing until 1950.

The Four Freedoms

Franklin Delano Roosevelt lived from 1882-1945. He was our only 4 term president serving from 1933-1945 when he died while in office. Following are other offices he held:

  • New York State Senator 1911-1913
  • Assistant Secretary of the Navy 1913-1920
  • Governor of New York 1929-1932

Roosevelt was a member of a prominent political family. His was a distant cousin was President Theodore Roosevelt and his wife, Eleanor Roosevelt, is considered by many historians as our greatest First Lady.

At President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s eighth State of the Union address he described his vision for the world in his Four Freedoms speech. This is considered his greatest speech. The Park is dedicated to this speech.

In the future days which we seek to make secure, we look forward to a world founded upon four essential human freedoms. The first is freedom of speech and expression – everywhere in the world. The second is freedom of every person to worship God in his own way – everywhere in the world. The third is freedom from want…everywhere in the world. The fourth is freedom from fear..anywhere in the world.” FDR, January 6, 1941.

Brilliant words from a great President.

We need more Franklin Delano Roosevelts in this Office.

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