Professor Finds Film of FDR's Secret Disability

1:26 PM, Jul 10, 2013   |    comments
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CHARLES WILSON
Associated Press

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - An Indiana college professor says he has found rare film footage that shows President Franklin Delano Roosevelt being pushed in a wheelchair, depicting a secret not revealed to the public until after his death.

Franklin College professor Ray Begovich said Tuesday he found the eight-second clip while doing research in the National Archives in College Park, Md.

Roosevelt contracted polio in 1921 at age 39 and did not publicly appear in a wheelchair throughout his presidency. The FDR Presidential Museum and Library says news photographers cooperated in concealing his disability, and those who didn't were blocked by Secret Service agents.

The film clip shows Roosevelt on the U.S.S. Baltimore at Pearl Harbor in July 1944, nine months before his death. The wheelchair is not clearly visible, but its motion is.

 

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