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Virtual Lecture - FDR and the Sea

Date: Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Location: Zoom Virtual Lecture

Time: 7 pm (EST)

Franklin Delano Roosevelt was a born collector. America’s 32nd president spent a lifetime collecting everything from stamps and coins to Hudson River art and rare books and manuscripts.

VL-FDR5One of FDR’s greatest passions was his enormous naval and maritime collection. Begun during his youth and patiently developed over decades, this rich collection—considered one of nation’s finest—reflects the President’s deep, lifelong love of the sea. An expert sailor, Roosevelt was America’s greatest seafaring president. Whether piloting a sailboat along the New England coast, racing his ice yacht on the Hudson River, fishing aboard pleasure craft, or crossing oceans on naval vessels, he relished time on the water. 

This lecture, presented by Herman Eberhardt, Supervisory Museum Curator at the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum, will explore Franklin Roosevelt’s engagement with the sea and reveal treasures from his naval and maritime collection that provide insights into this vital aspect of his life. FDR’s special relationship with the U.S. Navy will also be highlighted, including his affection for the U.S. Naval Academy (which he had once hoped to attend).  

Registration required.

Cost: Free, with a suggested donation of $10.


This lecture will be offered virtually by Zoom, an online video conferencing platform. Upon registration, you will be sent the link for the video conference to join on the evening of the lecture. If you do not receive your confirmation email after you register, please check your Spam folder, or email Carolyn Currin at To learn more about Zoom and to download the app to your computer, visit the Zoom website.

About our Presenter: Herman Eberhardt is the Supervisory Museum Curator at the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum in Hyde Park, New York. He oversees the work of the Museum staff and provides a program of changing exhibitions in a 3000 square foot special exhibitions gallery.   

Mr. Eberhardt has nearly thirty years of experience as a curator and interpretive planner of temporary and permanent museum exhibitions. Prior to joining the staff at the Roosevelt Library in 2003, he was Director of Research and a Principal at Chermayeff & Geismar, a New York City design firm noted for its work in museum and exhibition planning and design. At Chermayeff & Geismar and other exhibition planning firms in New York City, he worked on major history exhibit projects for a variety of clients, including the National Archives and Records Administration; the New York Public Library; the New York State Department of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation; the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission; the National Museum of American History (Smithsonian Institution); and the U.S. National Park Service. While at Chermayeff & Geismar, he was a principal member of the team that planned and designed the original (2000-2001) permanent exhibits at the National D-Day Museum [now the National World War II Museum] in New Orleans, Louisiana. He was also a principal member of the planning and design team that created the permanent exhibition on the Truman presidency that opened in 2001 at the Harry S. Truman Presidential Library & Museum in Independence, Missouri.  

 At the Roosevelt Library he served as Project Manager and Curator for the Museum’s new 13,000 square foot permanent exhibition, which opened in 2013. He began a program of changing special exhibits in a special exhibitions gallery that was created in 2003 and initiated the first traveling exhibits in the Library’s history. He has also worked on collaborative exhibits with the Churchill Archive Centre at Cambridge University, the Social Security Administration, the South Street Seaport Museum, and the Ukrainian Institute of America. His exhibition work at the Roosevelt Library has been honored with two Special Achievement Awards from the Archivist of the United States. 

A native of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Mr. Eberhardt holds a B.A. in History from Fordham University and an M.A. and M. Phil. in History (with honors) from Yale University. 


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