Franklin D. Roosevelt wrote these words on July 5, 1938, after receiving a report from his National Emergency Council entitled The Economic Conditions of the South. I Roosevelt, who considered himself something of an adopted southerner, stressed that the economic conditions of the region were damaging not only to it but to the nation as a whole. He felt that real economic recovery from the Depression could not be complete until the backward South began to catch up the rest of the nation. Indeed, his administration believed that the South had enormous economic potential that could benefit the entire nation, yet remained essentially untapped.