Name the five greatest U.S. presidents and Franklin Delano Roosevelt should make the list. Ironically, he received the least striking memorial until a second was built in 1997.
But that’s the way Roosevelt wanted it.
Shortly before his 1945 death while barely into his fourth term, Roosevelt told Justice Felix Frankfurter to erect a basic white monument the size of his desk. It wasn’t erected until 1965, but still sits by the National Archives along Pennsylvania Ave. N.W. The white marble cost $12,000 and paid for by admirers.
Ironically a commission began planning the larger memorial in 1955, 10 years before this memorial opened.