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Anna E. Roosevelt and her dog "Chief of the Mohawk", 1920

Anna Eleanor Roosevelt Halsted (May 3, 1906 – December 1, 1975, also Anna Dall and Anna Boettiger in earlier marriages), was the daughter of the thirty-second President of the United States Franklin D. Roosevelt and the granddaughter of Elliott Roosevelt.



Anna Eleanor Roosevelt was born at 125 East 36th Street in New York City. She was named for her mother, Eleanor Roosevelt, whose first name was Anna; and for her grandmother, Anna Roosevelt. Caught in a triad of three strong willed people — her mother, father, and grandmother, the domineering Sara Roosevelt — young Anna Eleanor had to grow up quickly. Anna's father later became the 32nd U.S. president, her mother the famous first lady. As a child, Anna is said to have been her father's favorite but she and her mother had a cold, distant and often strained relationship. Claims have been made that Eleanor Roosevelt allowed her daughter to be abused by the succession of governesses hired to help raise the children. After her 1924 graduation from Miss Chapin's school (now the Chapin School), she attended a short course at Cornell University in the forestry school.

She was married for the first time, in Hyde Park, New York, in 1926 to stockbroker Curtis Bean Dall. They had two children:

Between 1932 and 1934, Anna was associate editor of a magazine called Babies Just Babies (her mother Eleanor also had ties to this publication); hosted a radio program sponsored by the Best and Company Department Store; contributed articles to Liberty magazine; and wrote two children's books, Scamper and Scamper's Christmas.

Anna and Curtis Dall divorced on July 30, 1934 at Minden, Nevada. Six months later, on January 18, 1935, she married 34-year-old journalist (Clarence) John Boettiger. Her second husband had recently resigned from the Chicago Tribune, and signed on with the Will H. Hays organization, the Motion Picture Producers of America.

John Boettiger was hired by William Randolph Hearst to take over as publisher of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer following a bitter labor dispute with its employees in 1936. Anna was active as a writer and journalist, and she served as editor of the woman's page of that newspaper from 1936 until 1943.

With her second husband, she had one son:

When Boettiger went to serve in the war, new management conflicted with Anna and she left the paper as well. In 1944, at her father's request, Anna moved into the White House to serve as an assistant to the President and as White House hostess during her mother's frequent absences. Anna, who accompanied her father on the trip to Yalta, was a witness to many historic moments, but she also carried the burden of dealing with some of the most intimate and painful decisions of her parents during their dysfunctional marriage.

Anna and John Boettiger divorced in 1949. He committed suicide the following year. She married Dr. James Addison Halsted on November 11, 1952. Anna devoted much of her later life to problems of education, conservation, womens rights,civil rights and to carrying on many of her mother's interests and philanthropies. She was an active supporter of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum. Mrs. Halsted was also a board member of the Wiltwyck School for Boys and led the drive for construction of a new campus.

Anna Roosevelt Halsted died of throat cancer at the age of 69, at Montefiore Medical Center in New York City. She was survived by her husband of 23 years, her children, Eleanor Seagraves, Curtis Roosevelt and John Boettiger, along with eight grandchildren. She was interred at Saint James Episcopal Church Cemetery in Hyde Park, New York.

Further reading

  • The Franklin D Roosevelt Library at NARA has recently "...received correspondence between Curtis B. Dall, Anna Roosevelt's first husband, and the Roosevelt family, donated by his daughter Mary Dall Twichell...."[1]
  • The New York State Archives has 34 feet (10 m) of the Anna Roosevelt papers.[2]


  1. ^ 4th Quarter 2007
  2. ^


External links



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