Strange Death of Franklin Roosevelt - Emanuel Josephson

Royal Cousins—King George VI

Eleanor Roosevelt has placed in the Hyde Park Memorial Library a genealogical table, drawn up by P. W. Montague-Smith, assistant-editor of Debrett, that traces Franklin Delano Roosevelt's common ancestry with England's royalty through Henry II, great grandson of William the Conqueror through the Delano side. This may be fact or may be the usual dribble of social climbers who seek to justify their aspirations hy claiming descent by pure line from Adam through William the Conqueror.

But the collaterals of the Roosevelt-Delano Dynasty have frequently intermarried with the nobility of Europe, forming alliances that have had a serious import for our history. Through one of the alliances, Franklin Delano Roosevelt has become a closer relative of Queen Elizabeth and King George of England than of either Presidents Ulysses S. Grant or Theodore Roosevelt.

Multitudinous intermarriages tie in the Roosevelt-Delano Dynasty with the Astors. Franklin Delano Roosevelt's granduncle married Laura Astor, John Jacob Astor's granddaughter. Generations later, James Roosevelt Roosevelt, Franklin Delano Roosevelt's step-brother married Helen Schermerhom Astor, daughter of Mrs. William B. Astor and aunt of Vincent Astor. Thus Vincent Astor is a step-nephew of Franklin Delano Roosevelt as well as a cousin several degrees removed.

[Book Cover] from The Strange Death of FDR by Emanuel Josephson

Through the Astons, the Biddles, the Drexels and the Pauls, Roosevelt is related to Viscount William Astor of Cliveden and others of the British nobility. The relationship appears to be closest through the Astors. Second cousin Viscount Astor's niece, Rachel Spencer-Clay married David Bowes-Lyon, brother of England's Queen Elizabeth.

This illustrates the mode of dilution of royal blue blood. Another illustration is the marriage of Princess Elizabeth to Phillip Mountbatten, son of the former King George of Greece, whose family name of Battenberg was conferred by his great grandfather Alexander, son of the Duke of Hesse on his morganatic wife. He is related on the distaff side, through the Cassels, to Meyer Rothschild, the founder of the Jewish banking firm. It is reputedly the Battenberg strain in the Spanish royal family that is responsible for the hemophilia that curses it.

Thus it was that when King George and Queen Elizabeth on their visit to the United States to enlist its support in the war, visited Hyde Park and addressed Franklin Delano Roosevelt as "cousin", they were indeed dealing with a third cousin. This royal parley did much to bolster the aspirations of America's Royal Family. It also settled our entry into the war and the sacrifice of our men and wealth to bolster the moribund British Empire.