Leading Blog


« Theodore Roosevelt on Leadership | Leading Blog Main Page | Books About Theodore Roosevelt »



10.27.18

Theodore Roosevelt Was Born 160 Years Ago Today

Theodore Roosevelt Birth

TRs Lessons
THEODORE ROOSEVELT was born into wealth on October 27, 1858, in New York City. As a young boy, he was sickly. At twelve, his father installed a gym on the second floor of their house and told young Teddy, “You have the mind but not the body. You must make your body.” That began in him a determination to be fit and manly.

When he was 6-years-old, he watched Abraham Lincoln’s funeral procession pass by his grandfather’s mansion.

As a young boy, his family traveled to Europe and the Middle East. At eighteen he entered Harvard University. He was by this time an energetic, athletic, and knowledgeable. In June 1880 he graduated magna cum lude and ranked 21 out of a class of 177. Later that year he marries Alice Hathaway Lee only to lose her in childbirth three years later. His mother died the same day. He said, “The light has gone out of my life.”

Devastated, he headed to the Dakota Territory and became a rancher. He wrote, “I have always said I would not have been President had it not been for my experience in North Dakota.” At 23, he dropped out of law school to become a politician. He was elected to the New York State Assembly. In 1886 he married his second wife, Edith Kermit Carow.

He was a civil service commissioner in Washington and then the police commissioner in New York City before becoming the Assistant Secretary of the Navy in 1895. When war broke out between the United States and Spain he resigned to be the lieutenant colonel in the Rough Riders. The courage he demonstrated made him a war hero.

Upon his return, his popularity made him a shoe-in for the governor of New York. In 1900 he became vice president under William McKinley. In 1901 after McKinley was assassinated, he became at age 42 the youngest president in U.S. history. In 1906 he won the Nobel Peace Prize. The first American to do so. His presidency ended in 1909.

Roosevelt died in his sleep from a heart attack on January 6, 1919, in Oyster Bay, New York that cut short his plans to return to the presidency. His son wrote, “The old lion is dead.”

When Roosevelt was born James Buchanan was president. Two years later Abraham Lincoln would take office. There were 32 states in the Union. A Union that was to be ripped apart three years later in 1861 as the first shots were fired at Fort Sumter.

Roosevelt friend and conservationist Gifford Pinchot said in a February 1919 memorial speech:
We who loved Roosevelt have not lost him. The qualities we treasured in him, his loyalty, his genial kindness, his unwearied thoughtfulness for others, the generosity which made him prefer his friends in honor to himself, his tenderness with children, his quick delight in living, and the firm sound ness of his life's foundations, are potent with us yet.

The broad human sympathy which bound to him the millions who never saw his face, his clean courage and self-forgetful devotion to his country, the tremendous sanity of his grasp on the problems of the nation and the world, and the superb simplicity and directness of his life and thought still live as the inspiration and the basis for the new and better world which is to come.

The people loved Roosevelt because he was like them. In him the common qualities were lifted to a higher tension and a greater power, but they were still the same. What he did plain men understood and would have liked to do. The people loved him because his thoughts, though loftier, were yet within their reach, and his motives were always clear in their sight. They knew his purposes were always right. To millions he was the image of their better selves.

Of Related Interest:
  Theodore Roosevelt’s The Man in the Arena Speech 100th Anniversary
  The Making of Theodore Roosevelt
  Leadership in Turbulent Times
* * *

Like us on Instagram and Facebook for additional leadership and personal development ideas.

Posted by Michael McKinney at 07:36 AM
| Comments (0) | Leaders



Post a comment

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)






Copyright ©1998-2018 LeadershipNow / M2 Communications All Rights Reserved
All materials contained in LeadershipNow.com are protected by copyright and trademark laws and may not be used for any purpose whatsoever other than private, noncommercial viewing purposes. Derivative works and other unauthorized copying or use of stills, video footage, text or graphics is expressly prohibited. LeadershipNow is a trademark of M2 Communications.