Maureen Corr was ER's personal secretary for the last nine years of ER's life. Born in Northern Ireland, Corr emigrated to America in 1943. She earned a bachelor's degree in English from Hunter College and joined ER's staff in 1950 as an assistant to her longtime personal secretary Malvina "Tommy" Thompson (Scheider). As Thompson's health deteriorated Corr took on more of her duties, becoming ER's personal secretary after Thompson's death in 1953.
As ER's personal secretary, Corr scheduled appointments, answered routine correspondence and typed the "My Day" newspaper columns. She also accompanied ER on her travels, including two around-the-world tours in the 1950s and a trip to the Soviet Union in 1957. While the two women had a strong relationship, Corr was never as close to ER as Tommy had been. Corr never lived with ER as Tommy had done and she maintained a life away from the office.
When ER died in 1962, Corr helped with funeral arrangements before closing down the office. She then worked successively for the Eleanor Roosevelt Memorial Foundation, the Asia Society, and the U.S. Mission to the United Nations. Now retired, she lives in New York City.
Sources: Maurine Beasley, et al., eds., The Eleanor Roosevelt Encyclopedia (Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 2001), pp. 108-110; Joseph P. Lash, Eleanor: The Years Alone (New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 1972), pp. 175, 269; Joseph P. Lash, A World of Love: Eleanor Roosevelt and Her Friends, 1943-62 (New York: Doubleday & Co., 1984), pp. 367, 371.
Recommended citation: Eleanor Roosevelt, John Kennedy, and the Election of 1960: A Project of The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers, ed. by Allida Black, June Hopkins, John Sears, Christopher Alhambra, Mary Jo Binker, Christopher Brick, John S. Emrich, Eugenia Gusev, Kristen E. Gwinn, and Bryan D. Peery (Columbia, S.C.: Model Editions Partnership, 2003). Electronic version based on unpublished letters. http://adh.sc.edu.
For more information, visit The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers home page at http://www.gwu.edu/~erpapers/.
Copyright © 2006. The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers. All rights reserved.