Norman Rockwell is in focus today as it is the 75th anniversary of the publication of Rockwell's paintings illustrating the Four Freedoms.

The paintings were inspired by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's address made to Congress in 1941. In the speech, Roosevelt described the four ideals that became the titles of the paintings: Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Worship, Freedom from Want; and Freedom from Fear.

Originally commissioned by the Saturday Evening Post, these paintings are among Rockwell's most celebrated paintings, and the embodiment of American ideals as expounded upon by President Roosevelt.

While only the first two are referenced in the U.S. Constitution, Mr. Roosevelt highlighted all four in his exhortation that Americans begin putting themselves and their economy on a war footing. The speech was at once a scold to isolationists, an appeal to patriotism and an attempt to shock listeners out of their apathy.

Portions of the above article taken from the Berkshire Eagle's website.