Franklin D. Roosevelt

Remarks at Albany, N.Y.

October 17, 1936

Governor Lehman, Mayor Thatcher, and my old friends and neighbors:

I think I said on another occasion, four years ago, that I just could not make a formal speech to you people; and I feel that way now again, because this has been the best homecoming that I have ever had.

You know, Albany must mean something to a man and to his wife who started living here when they were a very young married couple. In those early days, beginning in 1911, we occupied two different houses at different times in Albany. I was then what might be called a kid Senator. Many years afterwards, after having been in Washington for a while, we came back to this old house; and those four years that we spent here were very happy years for all of our family.

We got to know all the people who lived across the street and on each of the side streets, so that we were able to recognize them every time we went in and out of the Executive Mansion. We almost felt as if they had been brought up with us.

And now, after four years, there is nothing strange about coming back here to Albany; it is a place that has meant so much in the lives of Mrs. Roosevelt and myself, especially when there are in the Executive Mansion two people of whom we are very, very fond, Governor and Mrs. Lehman.

I am inclined to think that Albany agrees with the rest of the State of New York that we cannot afford to have any change in the occupants of the Executive Mansion for the next two years. And I quite frankly am looking forward in the next two years at least, perhaps four years, to coming up to Albany with my wife to spend the day and visit with Herbert Lehman and his wife.

We have had a very wonderful trip through the United States these past days. I seem to thrive on ten nights in a sleeping car. And it has been a great lesson to compare the faces of the people today with the faces of the people as they were four years ago.

I think we have a happier America; I think we have a better America than we had then; and I believe also that, under the leadership of Governor Lehman, we have a much happier and a much better State of New York.

My friends, let me tell you again how happy both Mrs. Roosevelt and I are to come back here tonight and to have this wonderful reception, this truly wonderful homecoming you have given us. It is delightful to come here as the guests of Governor and Mrs. Lehman and of my old friend, Mayor Thatcher.

Franklin D. Roosevelt, Remarks at Albany, N.Y. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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