Anna Eleanor Roosevelt was born on October 11, 1884 to Elliott Bulloch Roosevelt and Anna Rebecca Livingston Ludlow Hall Roosevelt. Her parents were New York City’s elite families because of both their political connections and wealth. Her mother’s ancestors, the Livingstons, signed the Declaration of Independence and another administered the oath of office to George Washington. Her father was the younger brother of President Theodore Roosevelt.
When Eleanor was eight years old, her mother died. Her father sent her and her two brothers to live with their grandmother, Mary Ludlow Hall. Less than a year later, her brother Elliott died followed a year after by her father, Elliott Roosevelt, from alcoholism. Only Eleanor and her brother Gracie Hall Roosevelt (she named after the father’s aunt, Anna Bulloch and he after her husband James Gracie — he was called Hall) made it to their majority. Hall later died of alcoholism like their father in 1941.