The correct answer is A) Franklin D. Roosevelt.
Franklin D. Roosevelt was the first sitting President to appear on television, marking this historic event during the opening ceremonies of the New York World’s Fair on April 30, 1939. This live broadcast was a significant milestone in the history of television and in the evolving relationship between U.S. Presidents and media technology. Roosevelt’s appearance was transmitted from the fairgrounds to the RCA Pavilion at the fair and to a select number of television sets in New York City, symbolizing a new era in mass communication and public engagement.
This television appearance was an extension of Roosevelt’s innovative approach to communication, most famously exemplified by his “Fireside Chats.” These radio broadcasts, which began in 1933, were instrumental in bolstering public confidence and were a testament to Roosevelt’s understanding of the power of emerging media. His foray into television at the World’s Fair was a natural progression of this approach, showcasing his recognition of television’s potential to further bridge the gap between the government and the American people.
While Roosevelt’s television debut was groundbreaking, it’s noteworthy that he wasn’t the first elected official to appear on television. That distinction goes to Governor Alfred E. Smith of New York, who appeared in a test broadcast by W2XCR, RCA’s experimental station in New York City, in 1929