26. Theodore Roosevelt


Presidential Basics

  • Full name: Theodore Roosevelt
  • Years in office: 1901–1909
  • Political party: Republican; Progressive Party (1912)
  • Vice president: None (term following McKinley’s assassination), Charles W. Fairbanks (elected term)
  • Age at inauguration: 42
  • Nicknames: “TR,” “Teddy,” “Trust-Buster,” “Hero of San Juan Hill,” “The Bull Moose”

Random Trivia

  • The youngest: TR was the youngest president upon taking office.  He is not the youngest elected president; that honor goes to JFK.
  • The White House, officially: TR is the first to refer to the Executive Mansion as the White House on official stationary.

Birth & Death

  • Birthday: October 27, 1858
  • Birthplace: New York City, New York
  • Death: January 6, 1919
  • Place of death: Oyster Bay, New York
  • Place of burial: Sagamore Hill in Oyster Bay, New York
  • Last words: “Put out the light.”


  • Father: Theodore Roosevelt (1831–1878); Glass importer, merchant, banker
  • Mother: Martha Bulloch Roosevelt (1834–1884)
  • First Wife: Alice Hathaway Lee (1861 – 1884)
  • First Marriage: October 27, 1880 in Massachusetts
  • Second Wife: Edith Kermit Carow (1861 – 1948)
  • Second Marriage: December 2, 1886 in London, England
  • Kids: Six
    • From First Wife: One
      • Alice Lee (1884–1980)
    • From Second Wife: Five
      • Theodore Jr. (1887–1944)
      • Kermit (1889–1943)
      • Ethel Carow (1891–1977)
      • Archibald Bulloch (1894–1979)
      • Quentin (1897–1918)
  • Home: Sagamore Hill in Oyster Bay, New York

Other Facts

  • Height: 5’8″
  • Eye color: Blue
  • Ancestry: Dutch, Scotch, English, Huguenot
  • Religion: Dutch Reformed; Episcopalian
  • Born in a log cabin: No
  • Owned enslaved people: No
  • Freemason: Yes


  • Early education: Private tutoring
  • College degree: Yes
  • College: Harvard (graduated with B.A. 1880); studied law at Columbia Law School


  • Military Service: Yes
  • Lawyer: No
  • Writer
  • Historian
  • Member of New York Assembly (1882–1884)
  • Rancher, North Dakota (1884–1886)
  • Member of U.S. Civil Service Commission (1889–1895)
  • President of New York City Police Board (1895–1897)
  • Assistant Secretary of the Navy: McKinley administration (1897–1898)
  • Colonel of Rough Riders (1898)
  • Governor of New York (1898–1900)
  • Vice President: McKinley administration (1901)
  • President (1901–1909)
  • Leader of Expeditions in Africa (1909–1910)
  • Leader of Expeditions in South America (1913 – 1914)


  • The Naval War of 1812
  • The Winning of the West
  • African Game Trails
  • Autobiography
  • America and the World War
  • The Strenuous Life


The election of 1904 went to the popular incumbent, Theodore Roosevelt.  Roosevelt, who ascended to the presidency upon the assassination of William McKinley, used his first term to push progressive and government reforms.

Roosevelt easily won the election with 71% of the electoral votes. Notable in this election is the emergence of the Socialist party and its famous candidate, Eugene Debs.

After Roosevelt was elected in 1904, he promised to serve only that term and then leave office.  He did not run again in 1908, but did in 1912.

Spotlight Artifact

The Teddy Bear (around 1903)

Teddy Bear – Smithsonian Museum
Drawing the Line in Mississippi by Clifford Berryman (1902) LOC

In 1902 President Theodore Roosevelt traveled to Mississippi and Louisiana on a hunting expedition. While on the trip, the president refused to shoot a captured bear. A political cartoonist from the Washington Post named Clifford Berryman used the story in his drawings. Berryman’s cartoons inspired Morris Michtom to create a toy based on the event. Michtom’s “Teddy” bear became a favorite toy of the time and still bears the president’s name today.

Images & Sources:

Teddy Bear – Smithsonian National Museum of American History

“Drawing the Line in Mississippi” by Clifford Berryman (1902) – Library of Congress

Campaign Poster

For President, Theodore Roosevelt, lithograph published by Roesch (Louis) Co., 1904 (Library of Congress)


© 2021 Periodic Presidents, PJ and Jamie Creek