President Franklin D. RooseveltPresident Franklin D. Roosevelt Speeches and Statements Regarding Merchant Marine

President Roosevelt was a man of the sea and understood the importance of a strong merchant marine during war and peace. During World War I, he was Assistant Secretary of the Navy, in charge of arming of merchant ships and convoys. One of his first acts as President was to proclaim Maritime Day to commemorate the first steam-assisted trans-Atlantic crossing by the SS Savannah. His proposed legislation to modernize and professionalize the merchant marine, passed as the historic Merchant Marine Act of 1936. During World War II, he resisted attempts to incorporate the merchant marine into the Army or Navy because of potential problems with inter-service rivalry, increased costs, and greater need for manpower. Instead, he oversaw the operation of the War Shipping Administration out of the Oval Office.

Views And Two Reports On Subject Of Adequate Merchant Marine. Message From The President, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, March 4, 1935

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt: A Message to the Congress Asking Power to Requisition Idle Foreign Ships in American Waters, April 10, 1941

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt letter to Admiral land Read during Maritime Day Ceremonies on May 22, 1941

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt Radio Address Announcing the Proclamation of an Unlimited National Emergency, May 27, 1941 "We Choose Human Freedom"

The President Proclaims That an Unlimited National Emergency Confronts the Country. Proclamation No. 2487. May 27, 1941

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt Message to the Congress on the Sinking of the Robin Moor, June 20, 1941 "We Are Not Yielding and We Do Not Propose to Yield"

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt Fireside Chat to the Nation, September 11, 1941 "When You See a Rattlesnake Poised to Strike, You Do Not Wait Until He Has Struck Before You Crush Him"

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt Address over the radio on Navy Day concerning the attack upon the destroyer U. S. S. Kearny, October 27, 1941 "The forward march of Hitler and of Hitlerism can be stopped -- and it will be stopped."

War Shipping Administration Established by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt Executive Order No. 9054, February 7, 1942 "Outlines powers of WSA to take over and control all ships and shipping."

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt Statement on Maritime Day, May 22, 1942

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt Fireside Chat, October 12, 1942 [Excerpt] "Ships and Shipping"

Roosevelt Praises Maritime Service, New York Times, December 13, 1942

Wartime Memos and Messages: U.S. Merchant Marine an Armed Force February 3, 1943 to March 4, 1943

Franklin Delano Roosevelt Radio Message to the Fighting Men of the Merchant Marine, Christmas 1943

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt Greetings to Merchant Marine, Christmas 1944

Tribute by President Franklin D. Roosevelt on Seventh Anniversary of Merchant Marine Cadet Corps PR 2202, March 15, 1945

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, National Maritime Day Proclamations 1933 to 1945

President Franklin D. Roosevelt photo, Polaris, Cadet Corps Publication, U. S. Merchant Marine Academy, May 1945
Paperless Archives Historical documents on CD to purchase
War Shipping Administration Press Releases 1941-1946
WSA Press Releases

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