From 1900-1904, young Franklin Delano Roosevelt, with his Groton chum Lathrop Brown, rented rooms in Westmorly Court, (now B-17 of Adams House) the newest and most luxurious building on Harvard’s Gold Coast. Equipped with all the latest innovations – central heat, electricity, a modern “hygienic” bathroom – the suite contained over 600 sq. feet of living space spread over 4 rooms, with 14′ ceilings, French doors, and a working fireplace. These spacious quarters, which were meticulously decorated in high Victorian style by FDR and his mother Sara, represent a mode of living almost unimaginable to students today.
Our mission is to restore Roosevelt’s rooms to their 1900 appearance, both as the only existing memorial to the former President at Harvard, as well as a living museum of College student life at the turn of the twentieth century.
To that end, we’ve formed a non-profit, 501(c)3 charitable organization, The FDR Suite Foundation, Inc., to aid the restoration, headed by Michael Weishan ’86, former PBS host & author, and Rev. George Saltzman, the Catholic Chaplin to the Harvard Graduate Schools.
This blog, written by Michael, will be the record of our activities.