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ERIC Number: ED472105
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2003-Jan-15
Pages: 15
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
"A Date Which Will Live in Infamy"--The First Typed Draft of Franklin D. Roosevelt's War Address. Teaching with Documents.
National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, DC.
Early in the afternoon of December 7, 1941, U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt and his chief foreign policy aide, Harry Hopkins, were interrupted by a telephone call from Secretary of War, Henry Stimson, and told that the Japanese had attacked Pearl Harbor (Hawaii). At about 5:00 p.m., following meetings with his military advisers, the president calmly and decisively dictated to his secretary a request to the U.S. Congress for a declaration of war. President Roosevelt then revised the typed draft marking it up and selecting alternative wordings that strengthened the tone of the speech. He made the most significant change in the critical first line, which originally read "a date which will live in world history." On December 8, at 12:30 p.m., Roosevelt addressed a joint session of Congress and the nation via radio. At 4:00 p.m. that same afternoon, President Roosevelt signed a declaration of war. The primary source documents featured in this lesson plan are the annotated typewritten copy of the "Day in Infamy" speech and a photograph of President Roosevelt signing the declaration of war against Japan. The lesson plan provides background information; presents teaching activities; addresses National History Standards and National Civics and Government Standards; and suggests activities for document analysis and activities for further investigation. (BT)
National Archives and Records Administration, 8601 Adelphi Road, College Park, MD 20740-6001. Tel: 866-272-6272 (Toll Free); Fax: 301-837-0483; e-mail: For full text:
Publication Type: Guides - Classroom - Teacher
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Practitioners; Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, DC.