First Fireside Chat

March 12, 1933.

“I want to talk for a few minutes with the people of the United States about banking—with the comparatively few who understand the mechanics of banking but more particularly with the overwhelming majority who use banks for the making of deposits and the drawing of checks. I want to tell you what has been done in the last few days, why it was done, and what the next steps are going to be.”[1]

If you had gathered around the radio on March 12, 1933, you would have been able to hear the voice of Franklin Delano Roosevelt as he gave his first national radio address, the first of the infamous fireside chats.

Eight days after becoming President of the United States, Roosevelt took to the radio to talk to the public about the Emergency Banking Act. From then on, Roosevelt would address the people of the United States through his fireside chats. From the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House, FDR entered the homes of the American people in an attempt to soothe their worries. Historian John Dunning wrote, “It was the first time in history that a large segment of the population could listen directly to a chief executive, and the chats are often credited with helping keep Roosevelt’s popularity high.”[2] To this day, Roosevelt is regarded as one of the most effective communicators in radio history.

“Confidence and courage are the essentials of success in carrying out our plan. You people must have faith; you must not be stampeded by rumors or guesses. Let us unite in banishing fear. We have provided the machinery to restore our financial system; it is up to you to support and make it work. It is your problem no less than it is mine. Together we cannot fail.”[3]

[1] “March 12, 1933: Fireside Chat 1: On the Banking Crisis | Miller Center,” accessed March 2, 2023,
[2] John Dunning, “News Broadcasts”, On the Air: The Encyclopedia of Old-Time Radio (New York, NY: Oxford University Press,1998), p. 495.
[3] “March 12, 1933: Fireside Chat 1: On the Banking Crisis | Miller Center,” accessed March 2, 2023,


One response to “First Fireside Chat”

  1. Analytics & social research Avatar

    It’s very interesting! If you need help, look here: ARA Agency

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *