The Roosevelt family is an American political family from New York whose members have included two United States Presidents, a First Lady, and various merchants, politicians, inventors, clergymen, artists, and socialites. Progeny of a mid-17th century Dutch immigrant to New Amsterdam, many members of the family became locally prominent in New York City politics and business and intermarried with prominent colonial families. Two distantly related branches of the family from Oyster Bay on Long Island and Hyde Park in Dutchess County rose to national political prominence with the elections of Presidents Theodore Roosevelt (1901–1909) and his fifth cousin Franklin D. Roosevelt (1933–1945), whose wife, First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, was Theodore's niece.
President Theodore Roosevelt family (1903)
|Current region||New York and New England|
|Earlier spellings||Rosevelt, van Rosenvelt, van Rosevelt|
|Etymology||Dutch for "Rose field"|
|Place of origin||Netherlands|
|Connected families||Delano family|
Du Pont family
de Peyster family
|Estate(s)||Sagamore Hill (Oyster Bay, New York)|
Springwood (Hyde Park, New York)
Van Roosevelts of Oud-VossemeerEdit
The earliest known ancestor of the family was a man from the Netherlands named Claes van Rosenvelt. It has been suggested[by whom?] that he was related to the Van Rosevelts of Oud-Vossemeer, who were amt lords in the Tholen region of the Netherlands. While evidence suggests that Claes van Rosenvelt indeed came from the Tholen region where the Van Roosevelts were landowners, no records exist that prove that he is related to the noble family. It may simply be a coincidence, or Claes van Rosenvelt may have chosen the name purposefully because of its noble origins or to honor his local amt lord, as was common practice for peasants of the time.
Claes van RosenveltEdit
Claes Martenszen van Rosenvelt (c. 1626 – 1659), the immigrant ancestor of the Roosevelt family, arrived in New Amsterdam (present day New York City) some time between 1638 and 1649. About the year 1652, he bought a farm from Lambert van Valckenburgh comprising 24 morgens (that is, 20.44 ha or 50.51 acres) in what is now Midtown Manhattan, including the present site of the Empire State Building. The property included approximately what is now the area between Lexington Avenue and Fifth Avenue bounded by 29th St. and 35th St.
Claes' son Nicholas was the first to use the spelling Roosevelt and the first to hold political office, as an alderman. Nicholas' children Johannes and Jacobus were, respectively, the progenitors of the Oyster Bay and Hyde Park branches of the family. By the late 19th century, the Hyde Park Roosevelts were generally associated with the Democratic Party and the Oyster Bay Roosevelts with the Republican Party. President Theodore Roosevelt, an Oyster Bay Roosevelt, was the uncle of Eleanor Roosevelt, later wife of Franklin Roosevelt. Despite political differences that caused family members to actively campaign against each other, the two branches generally remained friendly.
Coats of armsEdit
|Arms of the Roosevelt family|
|Crest||Upon a torse argent and gules, Three ostrich plumes each per pale gules and argent.|
|Blazon||Argent upon a grassy mound a rose bush proper bearing three roses Gules barbed and seeded proper..|
|Motto||Qui plantavit curabit ("He who planted [us] will care [for us]")|
|Other elements||The mantling, gules doubled argent.|
|The Roosevelt arms feature a rose bush in reference to the name: "Roosevelt", which is Dutch for "rose field", making these an example of canting arms.|
In heraldry, canting arms are a visual or pictorial depiction of a surname, and were and still are a popular practice. It would be common to find roses, then, in the arms of many Roosevelt families, even unrelated ones (the name Rosenvelt means roses-field). Also, grassy mounds or fields of green would be a familiar attribute.
The Van Roosevelts of Oud-Vossemeer in Zeeland have a coat of arms that is divided horizontally, the top portion with a white chevron between three white roses, while the bottom half is gold with a red lion rampant. A traditional blazon suggested would be, Per fess vert a chevron between three roses argent and Or a lion rampant gules.
The coat of arms of the namesakes of the Dutch immigrant Claes van Rosenvelt, ancestor of the American political family that included Theodore and Franklin D. Roosevelt, were white with a rosebush with three rose flowers growing upon a grassy mound, and whose crest was of three ostrich feathers divided into red and white halves each. In heraldic terms this would be described as, Argent upon a grassy mound a rose bush proper bearing three roses gules barbed and seeded all proper, with a crest upon a torse argent and gules of Three ostrich plumes each per pale gules and argent. Franklin Roosevelt altered his arms to omit the rosebush and use in its place three crossed roses on their stems, changing the blazon of his shield to Three roses one in pale and two in saltire gules barbed seeded slipped and left proper.
Oyster Bay RooseveltsEdit
Hyde Park RooseveltsEdit
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