Sunrise at Campobello
When Rick from Rick and Paulettes RV-Travels commented about Campobello today he brought up the film ‘Sunrise at Campobello’. The film was made in 1960 and is about Franklin D.Roosevelt and Campobello Island.
Beginning at the Roosevelt family's vacation home on Campobello Island, New Brunswick (on the Maine–Canada border), in the summer of 1921, Franklin is depicted in early scenes as vigorously athletic, enjoying games with his children and sailing his boat.
From WIKIPEDIA: Sunrise at Campobello is a 1960 American biographical film made by Dore Schary Productions and Warner Bros., and based on the long-running Broadway play with the same name. It tells the story of the initial struggle by future President of the United States Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR) and his family when he was stricken with paralysis at the age of 39 in August 1921.
Suddenly stricken with fever and then paralysis, subsequent scenes focus on the ensuing conflict in the following weeks between the bedridden FDR, his wife Eleanor, his mother Sara, and his close political adviser Louis Howe over FDR's political future. A later scene portrays FDR literally dragging himself up the stairs as, through grit and determination, he painfully strives to overcome his physical limitations and not remain an invalid. In the final triumphant scene, FDR is shown re-entering public life as he walks to the speaker's rostrum at a party convention, aided by heavy leg braces and on the arm of his eldest son James.
Visiting the Roosevelt Cottage on Campobello transports the visitor back in time, when there was only one telephone on Campobello (and it was NOT in the Roosevelt Cottage) and no electric services anywhere on the island.
It was a time when American millionaires would be able to leave their businesses in the big cities of the East Coast in the care of their executive representatives and enjoy the cooler summer season with family and friends on Campobello Island. Picnics and going sailing with family and friends seemed more important than being with their businesses in the city.
They would travel up with either Steamship or train to Eastport,ME. From there they would be rowed across the bay to Campobello, where they either booked a large comfortable suite at one of the huge hotels or retire in the privacy of their own ‘cottages’. These cottages were called that as they usually were more primitive and often smaller than the stately homes they owned in the big cities. Of course, today these ‘cottages’ seem to be rather mansions to us, as we are simply not used to live on such large and generous properties.
Several economic downturns during the early 20th century and the arrival of the automobile brought a change to Campobello. Automobiles could not get to the island. Tourism came to a halt. Those big hotels, called Tyn-y-Coed and Tyn-y-Maes on Campobello Island, elaborately built in wood, were abandoned, one burned down, another was dismantled and the materials spread across many homes on the island. Our house has interior doors where we can still see the screw holes from the room number. The ornate trim we have around windows and doors came from the hotel as well. In fact the entire staircase came from the hotel. These old materials are lending an air of history, quality and a style to the house which basically has disappeared from modern homes.
Even though the FDR-Cottage seems elegant in its style and grandeur, we have found more elaborate woodwork in the Hubbard and Prince Cottages. Both were built a bit later, and after the Roosevelts were fully established on Campobello.
Tea with Eleanor
Eleanor Roosevelt was and still is remembered as an immensely popular person. She had a keen sense of peoples needs, she had diplomatic sense and she was a fighter for equality.
To honour her memory the Roosevelt Park organized a weekly opportunity they called ‘Tea with Eleanor’. It is limited to 20 visitors who can enjoy to take the tea at the Hubbard Cottage. It is completely free and became vastly popular last summer. A park employee will stand by and tell the story about Eleanor Roosevelt.
I will conclude the history lesson for today, otherwise I risk to have you snoring away.
If you want to read more about the Old days on Campobello you may visit my other website at http://www.campobello-island.blogspot.com/
Thanks for joining the history lesson!