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American Writers: a journey through history is a permanent archive for educators, researchers and every one interested in the writers featured in the  C‑SPAN series.


Chapter V







Born: October 27, 1858 - New York, New York
Died: January 6, 1919 - Oyster Bay, New York


Born into a prominent New York family, Roosevelt was sickly from birth but set about determinedly to overcome his weakness, acquiring a passion for the vigorous life. He graduated with honors from Harvard, and soon
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Theodore Roosevelt, The Winning of the West
C-SPAN's Video Library: Theodore Roosevelt
entered the New York legislature, where he became a notably independent Republican leader. After the death of his wife in 1884, he left politics to ranch in the Dakota Territory. He also began writing historical works, including The Naval War of 1812 (1882). In 1886 he returned to run unsuccessfully for governor, then again retired to write such books as Hunting Trips of a Ranch Man (1885), biographies of Thomas Hart Benton and Gouverneur Morris, and The Winning of the West (4 vols., 1889-96). As a civil-service commissioner (1889-95) and head of the city's police commissioners (1895-97), he gained national prominence for his battles against corruption. At the start of the Spanish-American War in 1898 he joined Col. Leonard Wood in organizing a cavalry unit, later called the Rough Riders; his book The Rough Riders appeared in 1899. He returned to New York a hero and was elected governor.

Elected vice president in 1900, he became president after William McKinley's assassination in 1901, and his first term saw the passage of the Sherman Antitrust Act. Elected in his own right in 1904, he passed consumer-protection laws, set aside vast tracts of land as national forests and parks, and began construction of the Panama Canal. For mediating an end to the Russo-Japanese War, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1906.

Works by Theodore Roosevelt
The Naval War of 1812 (1882)
Hunting Trips of a Ranch Man (1885)
The Winning of the West (4 vols., 1889-96)
The Rough Riders (1899)
Progressive Principles (1913)
History as Literature (1913)
America and the World War (1915)
After declining to run for reelection in 1908, Roosevelt traveled in Africa and Europe. In 1912, failing to win the Republican nomination for president, he organized the Bull Moose (Progressive) Party and ran as its nominee. He continued to write numerous books, including Progressive Principles (1913), History as Literature (1913), and America and the World War (1915). His lifetime output also includes some 2,000 articles on history, politics, travel, and nature, and more than 150,000 personal letters.

Web sites about Theodore Roosevelt
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution, Theodore Roosevelt: Icon of the American Century



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