- NAME: Theodore Roosevelt
- OCCUPATION: Environmental Activist, Warrior, Governor, U.S. President
- BIRTH DATE: October 27, 1858
- DEATH DATE: January 06, 1919
- EDUCATION: Harvard College, Columbia Law School
- PLACE OF BIRTH: New York, New York
- PLACE OF DEATH: Oyster Bay, New York
- Full Name: Theodore Roosevelt Jr.
- AKA: TR
- AKA: Teddy Roosevelt
- AKA: Theodore Roosevelt
- Nickname: "Trust-Buster"
Best Known For
A New York governor who became the 26th U.S. president, Theodore Roosevelt is remembered for his foreign policy, corporate reforms and ecological preservation.
Theodore "Teddy" Roosevelt was governor of New York before becoming U.S. vice president. At age 42, Teddy Roosevelt became the youngest man to assume the U.S. presidency after President William McKinley was assassinated in 1901.
"The Bull Moose Room" at New York City's Keens Steakhouse features an array of memorabilia in honor of Theodore Roosevelt, who used to frequent the restaurant.
An inside look at the vigorous lifestyle of Theodore Roosevelt.
Learn about the origins of the Spanish American War and Theodore Roosevelt's hunger for war with Spain.
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Born in New York City on October 27, 1858, Theodore "Teddy" Roosevelt was governor of New York before becoming U.S. vice president. At age 42, Teddy Roosevelt became the youngest man to assume the U.S. presidency; He became commander-in-chief after President William McKinley was assassinated in 1901, and won a second term in 1904. Known for his anti-monopoly policies and ecological conservationism,
"I do not believe there ever was any life more attractive to a vigorous young fellow than life on a cattle ranch in those days. It was a fine, healthy life, too; it taught a man self-reliance, hardihood, and the value of instant decision ... I enjoyed the life to the full."
"Far and away, the best prize that life has to offer is the chance to work hard at work worth doing."
"Speak softly and carry a big stick. You will go far."
"There is delight in the hardy life of the open."
"A man's usefulness depends upon his living up to his ideals insofar as he can."
"It is hard to fail, but it is worse never to have tried to succeed."
"Be practical as well as generous in your ideals. Keep your eyes on the stars and keep your feet on the ground."
"Character, in the long run, is the decisive factor in the life of an individual and of nations alike."
"A great democracy must be progressive or it will soon cease to be great or a democracy."
"Ours is a government of liberty by, through and under the law."
"If I must choose between righteousness and peace, I choose righteousness."
"Courage, hard work, self-mastery and intelligent effort are essential to successful life."
Roosevelt won the Nobel Peace Prize for his part in ending the Russo-Japanese War. He died in New York on January 6, 1919.
Theodore Roosevelt Jr. was born on October 27, 1858, in New York City, to Theodore "Thee" Roosevelt Sr., of Dutch heritage, and Martha "Mittie" Bulloch, a Southern belle rumored to have been a prototype for the Gone with the Wind character Scarlett O'Hara. His family owned successful plate-glass import business.
As a young boy, Theodore Roosevelt—or "Teedie," as he was known to his family members (he wasn't fond of the nickname "Teddy")—spent a lot of time inside his family's handsome brownstone, homeschooled due to his illnesses and asthma. This gave him the opportunity to nurse his passion for animal life, but by his teens, with the encouragement of his father, whom he revered, Theodore developed a rigorous physical routine that included weightlifting and boxing.
When his father died during his second year at Harvard College, Roosevelt channeled his grief into working even harder: After graduating magna cum laude in 1880, he enrolled at Columbia Law School and got married to Alice Hathaway Lee of Massachusetts.
Roosevelt didn't stay long at law school, opting instead to join the New York State Assembly as a representative from New York City—becoming the youngest to serve in that position. Not long after, Roosevelt was speeding through various public service positions, including captain of the National Guard and minority leader of the New York Assembly. However, the tragic deaths of his mother and his wife, which occured on the same day (February 14, 1884), propelled Roosevelt to leave for the Dakota Territory for two years. There, he lived as a cowboy and cattle rancher, leaving his infant daughter in the care of his elder sister.
Returning to political life in 1886, Roosevelt was defeated for the New York City mayorship. Around the same time, he married his second wife, Edith Kermit Carow, whom he had known as child (they had watched the funeral procession of Abraham Lincoln from a window in his grandfather's house on Union Square in New York City). Roosevelt soon resumed his career trajectory, first as a civil service commissioner, then as a New York City police commissioner and U.S. Navy assistant secretary under President William McKinley.
Taking a keen interest in the Spanish-American War, Roosevelt left his government post to organize a volunteer cavalry known as the Rough Riders, which he led in a bold charge up San Juan Hill in the Battle of San Juan Heights, in 1898. A war hero, and nominated for the Congressional Medal of Honor, Roosevelt was elected governor of New York in 1898.
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