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The accents of the Roosevelts

The first US president to win the Nobel Peace Prize was of course Theodore Roosevelt, in 1906 for his mediation of the Treaty of Portsmouth. Browsing through YouTube I found that several recordings of his speeches survive. His accent, to me, sounds completely unlike any I have heard in New York - his family of course being New York aristocracy:

But his younger cousin Franklin Roosevelt's accent sounds entirely recognisably northeastern to me:

What then surprised me even more was to hear the voice of Eleanor Roosevelt - wife of Franklin and niece of Theodore:

Queen Elizabeth II would be proud of some of those vowels! For extra amusement, here's Eleanor Roosevelt on What's My Line?



( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 10th, 2009 05:14 pm (UTC)
Theodore Roosevelt sounds a little like Winston Churchill. I see Churchill's grandfather, the New York banker Leonard Jerome, is buried in the same cemetery in Brooklyn as Roosevelt's parents and first wife. Anybody know if the Jeromes and the Roosevelts had any common relatives?

(I mean relatives in common. Heaven forbid they should have had any relatives who were common :-)
Oct. 11th, 2009 01:26 pm (UTC)
Oddly Theodore sounded a bit like Sean Connery to me.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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