26 - Theodore Roosevelt

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26 - Theodore Roosevelt

Editado: Ago 25, 2015, 1:42 pm

Mornings on Horseback
Little Taiko
River of Doubt
The Rough Riders
T.R. The Last Romantic
Theodore Roosevelt: A Life
The Wilderness Warrior: Theodore Roosevelt and the Crusade for America by Douglas Brinkley
The Bully Pulpit

Roosevelt wanted the motto "In God We Trust" removed from the new $20 gold coin designed in 1907. Roosevelt felt it was blasphemous to use the Lord's name on coins that were so often used to buy "worldly" goods and services. After a huge public outcry, Congress passed a law requiring "In God We Trust" be returned to all United States coinage at once.
He was the first President to ride in an airplane. He flew for four minutes in a plane built by the Wright Brothers on October 11, 1910.
Theodore Roosevelt was our youngest president(He was younger than Kennedy at the time that McKinley was shot and he was inaugurated).
In 1912, Roosevelt took a drink of coffee and exclaimed, "That coffee tastes good, even to the last drop!" Maxwell House got their motto from this.
Roosevelt was the first president to leave the continental U.S. while in office. He went to Panama in 1906.
He won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1906 for his role of peacemaker in the Russo-Japanese War. He was the first American to ever win the award.
The teddy bear is named after Theodore Roosevelt.
Teddy Roosevelt was a third cousin twice removed of Martin Van Buren, a fifth cousin of Franklin D. Roosevelt, an uncle of Eleanor Roosevelt.
Roosevelt was blind in his left eye. He lost his eyesight when he was boxing.
His favorite word was "bully" meaning great.
Roosevelt had a photographic memory. He could read a page in the time it took anyone else to read a sentence.

Jan 4, 2009, 2:59 pm

I'm being a bid of an oddball and not starting at the beginning with Washington. Mainly because I have already read bios of Washington, Adams, and Jefferson recently. Also, I happened to have a copy of Mornings on Horseback by David McCullough on hand so starting there seemed easier. I'm looking forward to reading it and will post back later once I am finished. Has anybody else read this book?

Jan 5, 2009, 12:50 am

I haven't read that book, but I've liked everything else by McCullough that I've ever read, so I would hesitate on this one.

Jan 9, 2009, 4:01 pm

President #2 I read Theodore Roosevelt:a life by Nathan Miller (ISBN 0-688-06784-0). I didnt think I would like TR as much as I did. I plan to read more about him. I have River of Doubt and some of the Edmund Morris books that I havent read yet.

Editado: Jan 15, 2009, 9:32 pm

I finished Mornings on Horseback and really enjoyed it. This is a great read if you are interested in the early years of Theodore Roosevelt. It covers his life from the ages of 10-27 and provides a lot of insight into the development of his character. I would be interested in discussing the impact of his family with anyone else who has read the book. I found them odd, but I suppose odd by today's standards. Maybe they were quite normal for the time. I will definitely be reading another book on his life, preferably something that covers his presidency so that I can get a full picture of his life.

Jan 30, 2009, 2:09 pm

River of Doubt was interesting. I think I've commented and reviewed it elsewhere though.

Fev 2, 2009, 11:42 am

The Rough Riders by Theodore Roosevelt with additional commentary by Richard Bak--was fascinating because I was reading Roosevelt's own account of the creation, use, and historical impact of the Rough Riders and the Spanish-American War in Cuba, The commentary and sidebars prepared by Bak were interesting (one is a diary of a Rough Rider, another is a history of the "Smoke Riders," the Colored Ninth (black cavalry)). Roosevelt's writing is self-promoting (there's a cute anecdote about that!), but he does well by his history of the unit and his men.

Oh and LittleTaiko--it's generally accepted that the Roosevelts, in nearly every family unit, was a "bit odd."

Mar 14, 2009, 1:51 pm

I read a juvenile book about Theodore Roosevelt because that was what I had. I would like to read his book "The Rough Riders" also, but maybe if I go in order I will do it then. ;) I read "Bully for You, Teddy Roosevelt" by Jean Fritz

Abr 3, 2009, 2:56 pm

Mornings on Horseback is one of my favorite books! I couldn't put it down. I thought it was an excellent read. It's been a while since I read it, but it was one of those books that stay with me, I found the history of his side of the Roosevelt family fascinating. I'm probably due for a re-read of it.

Set 1, 2009, 8:50 pm

So far on T.R. I've read River of Doubt by Millard and am halfway thru (and have been for some time!) T.R.: The Last Romantic by Brands. I have also read Four Hats in the Ring where T.R. is a chief character.

Fev 4, 2010, 5:48 pm

I'm finally finding time to read some Presidential biographies. I decided to start with the 20th century Presidents this year. So, I read Theodore Roosevelt: A Life by Nathan Miller.

There are a number of good books about Theodore Roosevelt. Mornings on Horseback focuses on his early life, while Theodore Rex covers his years as president. Just last year, Douglas Brinkley's The Wilderness Warrior, which focused on Roosevelt's support of the conservation movement, was published. However, I knew relatively little about Roosevelt and wanted a book that provide an overview of his life. Miller's biography fit the bill nicely.

Roosevelt led an interesting life. I have to think that Roosevelt is a biographer's dream. He was a larger-than-life character who moved from an action-packed childhood to a career as a tenacious New York politician to a heroic turn as a member of the Rough Riders to an unexpected rise to the presidency. In between he wrote a number of books, shot big game, and had a large and active family. Clearly, there is plenty of fodder for a biographer.

Miller took this raw material and turned it into an interesting and coherent story. He includes plenty of relevant and interesting details without belaboring any single stage of the president's life. He helps us understand how the context shaped Roosevelt's actions and how Roosevelt shaped the political landscape during his presidency and for the remainder of his life. While this book made me want to read some of the other more focused Roosevelt biographies, it also stands on its own as a readable overview of a remarkable life.

Along with my Presidential biographies, I'm trying to read a novel that was published during the President's term in office. To accompany Theodore Roosevelt, I read The Jungle. Interestingly, this book was mentioned in Miller's biography because it may have influenced Roosevelt's push for stricter regulation of the food industry.

Fev 5, 2010, 12:42 pm

What a super idea to read a novel published during the term...Not sure I'd want to go back to 1800's stuff, but starting with TR forward, it would be quite enlightening.

Also thanks for a good explanation of the differences in these books. Looks like you did a lot of research for all of us.

Mar 7, 2010, 11:23 am

I just finished Theodore Rex. Here is my review: This is a most enjoyable biography of Teddy Roosevelt. Morris is helped, of course, by the fact that his subject must be one of the most interesting and energetic presidents. In this volume, Morris covers the period from the day of McKinley's death to the day of Taft's inauguration. It is, on the whole, a sympathetic portrait of Roosevelt, but Morris does at least try to point out his faults and mistakes. In a number of places, Morris describes how even Roosevelt's opponents couldn't help but like him personally, or were drawn to him in some way, and I had the feeling that Morris felt the same way. The book is well-written and lively, and it also provides a very good analysis of the political wrangling that occurred during Roosevelt's presidency. I felt like I learned a lot about the social and political situation at that time in addition to learning about Roosevelt himself.

Re: #11: In Theodore Rex, the author points out the effect The Jungle had on the passage of the Pure Food Bill, so that seems like a particularly appropriate novel to read in conjunction with a TR biography!

Ago 2, 2010, 10:36 pm

OK I just finished reading The Wilderness Warrior: Theodore Roosevelt and the Crusade for America by Douglas Brinkley

It focused entirely on Roosevelt's love of nature and the work he put into creating National parks, national forests, and other natural habitats. He was sort of a contradiction who loved animals, but also the love of the hunt for animals, though he softened up as he got older. And the dude really loved birds. Teddy is one of those larger than life Presidents, so this book only scratches the surface of TR. I did wish he discussed his African safaris and trips to the Amazon, but the book ended after his time in office ended.

Set 10, 2010, 8:59 pm

Mornings on Horseback is a favorite of mine! I think McCullough does a great job in researching when he writes his books. Teddy was a very interesting character, however I am not fond of how he handled his daughter Alice. I am sure it was devastating to lose his wife, but at all times that is when a child needs the other parent. I am reading a biography on Alice now by Stacy Cordery and find Alice quite an ambitious young lady for that period of History.


Nov 23, 2010, 8:05 pm

Theodore Roosevelt: A Life by Nathan Miller.
A ripping good yarn. Ne'er a dull page.
This book is interesting from start to finish, it tells of a complete life.
This is exactly the book I wanted for my collection of single-volume Presidential biographies. If a researcher of TR wants more information about the Panama Canal, the Battle of San Juan Hill, establishment of the National Parks system, or the 'Square Deal', it may be found elsewhere in the myriad of books written about his concerns. Read this one just for the pleasure of knowing one who was larger then life.
I now have to seek out Nathan Miller's "FDR: An Intimate History".

Mar 28, 2011, 4:40 pm

The Path Between the Seas by David McCullough. The central event of TR's presidency. Vital for understanding his stance on American Imperialism, the role of government, and the importance of naval power. Roosevelt became involved in the American effort to construct the canal shortly after becoming president and remained its most ardent supporter throughout the long years of construction.

Mar 29, 2011, 8:45 pm

Another book I just read from the Early Reviewers is Imperial Cruise by James Bradley. It wasnt a very flattering picture of Teddy or his policies.

Abr 26, 2011, 8:37 pm

The Wilderness Warrior
I am a sympathetic reader and very much enjoyed the details of Theodore Roosevelt as a conservation president. I had no idea he saved the Grand Canyon--according to Brinkley --from mining and extensive tourism interests. This book is a jumping off point for me (it covers so much more than just TR's interest in wildlife and wild places) now I want to read biographies on John Burroughs, John Muir, Gifford Pinchot, and John James Audubon. Theodore Roosevelt's life is an inspiration--made me start keeping a naturalist's journal detailing the natural happenings on a tract of land my husband and I just bought in Eastern Oregon.

On the other hand, I was not as favorably impressed by The River of Doubt, which I read after The Wilderness Warrior. The term "dangerous" must have been used 500 times. It seemed the reader was being led a bit too obviously to be concerned by what tragedy might happen next during their long river of doubt journey. What really happened -- the facts and the people involved was fascinating--I guess Millard's writing style didn't work for me. But, it is a remarkable story detailing one of TR's last significant trips through the wilderness.

Abr 27, 2011, 9:25 am

The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt by Edmund Morris

Finished Edmund Morris' The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt yesterday evening. Wow! Loved the book, loved the man. I've decided I need to finish the trilogy, so I'm using the next couple of months to read Theodore Rex and Colonel Roosevelt.

Editado: Abr 27, 2011, 12:08 pm

#19 - I read The Wilderness Warrior last year, and your comments reminded me that I never posted my impressions here!

One Amazon reviewer writes that the book "is among the worst-written histories I have ever read," and as much as it pains me to say this, I tend to agree. One sometimes gets the impression that the author was so overwhelmed with information, that he had trouble with organization and editing. In fact, at times I couldn't help feeling there was more than one author at work. That is not to say however, that the book is not worth reading - it is! While the writing might fall short in many, many areas (e.g. repetitive, copious non sequiturs, numerous factual errors), this is a great introduction to the ideologies and personalities of the naturalist / conservation movement in America, and a fantastic survey of period literature. There is a great book in there, just demanding to be let out.

One great consequence of the book... It did lead me to read John Burroughs' Camping and Tramping with Roosevelt (1906), which I thorougly enjoyed!


#20 - I felt the same way (loved the book that is!) after reading Robert Caro's The Path to Power, volume one in his "The Years of Lyndon Johnson" series, so I immediately moved on to volume two, Means of Ascent, and am now over 300 pages into volume three, Master of the Senate.

I just bought the Edmund Morris trilogy in hardback, so I'm looking forward to going on that adventure as well!

Abr 27, 2011, 6:57 pm

#19 -- I was very impressed with The River of Doubt. I didn't notice the overuse of "dangerous" but I find her prose captivating and i often felt that I was in the Amazon with Roosevelt while reading the book.

#21 -- All the Caro books on LBJ are outstanding, but Master of the Senate is at the apex of the stack. That volume can stand alone as a history of the Senate in the first half of the 20th century and LBJ's enormous impact upon it. One of the finest books of history/biography out there IMHO

Abr 27, 2011, 10:33 pm

#19---May I suggest "Thje Big Burn" by Tim Egan.

Maio 4, 2011, 11:16 am

With the Exception of Washington and Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt seems to be the most writtne about President. I have also read The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt and Mornings on Horseback. While The Path between the Seas is not a Roosevelt biography, it certainly involved on of the more momentus occasions in his Presidency.

Jun 27, 2011, 10:32 am

Theodore Rex by Edmund Morris

Second in Morris' three-volume biography of Theodore Roosevelt - easily the most interesting US President for me. Theodore Rex concentrates on TR's presidency (in 550 pages, no less) and is pretty detailed. That's fine since he's discussing some really important topics like the intrigue leading up to the Panama Canal Treaty, TR's trust-busting and capital/labor relations, and the buildup of the US Navy to counter German and British influence in the Western Hemisphere, among others. Morris doesn't just talk about issues and politics, though. Roosevelt the man is the focus: his family, friends, political allies and enemies, his reaching pretty much the pinnacle of power and influence in the US, his walking away from it in 1908. We see TR as less the uber-man and more the man as he ages and mellows a bit.

Morris' writing is top-notch. I'm highly recommending the trilogy - even though I haven't gotten to the third yet, it's hard for me to imagine it fails after the first two succeed so well!

Oh, and yeah, the teddy bear story shows up in this volume. :)

Ago 22, 2011, 10:48 pm

Colonel Roosevelt by Edmund Morris

I finished up the third in Edmund Morris' excellent trilogy on Theodore Roosevelt while on a mini-vacation/trip to get the son back to college. As with the other volumes, the story's great, Morris' work is high quality, and the book's highly readable.

This volume concentrates on the years following Roosevelt's terms as President. TR followed big changes with adventures - his safari after leaving office and explored an unknown Brazilian river after losing in 1912 as a third-party candidate. It's one of my favorite thing about Teddy, and these passages were some of the best. Other sections on Teddy's political dealings, both to preserve his progressive ideals and to get Wilson to enter WWI to aid Britain and France - were less interesting, but mainly because Teddy was so ineffective in his attempts at influence, even as he was mostly wildly popular with the public. In the end, this is a book about a man past his prime, both physically and politically, and so has a measure of sadness to it.

The whole trilogy is highly recommended!

Nov 21, 2011, 7:52 pm

I'm not close to reading TR yet, but did see a great discussion of TR's post - presidential antics here at Murder is Everywhere. Leighton Gage who lives in Brasil, is one of my favorite mystery writers.

Set 19, 2012, 12:50 pm

I just finished Mornings on Horseback by David McCullough. As with other books I have read by McCullough, this was an excellent read. The book only covers TR's early formative years through about age 28. McCullough extensively uses Roosevelt family correspondence which really gives a peek into the lifestyles of well-to-do families of the Victorian era. What an interesting guy. I think I need to read a little more about TR.

Set 21, 2012, 11:20 am

I have had Mornings on Horseback on my TBR for some time. It beckons me ...

Set 22, 2012, 8:16 am

Vic, if you can find the Nathan Miller book, I'm sure that you will enjoy it - for the man and for the writing.

Fev 23, 2013, 10:37 am

I finally finished Edmund Morris's three volume series on TR. It included The Rise Of Theodore Roosevelt, Theodore Rex and Colonel Roosevelt. I also read The Spanish War: An American Epic 1898 by G. J. A. O'Toole to fill in my knowledge of that little remembered war.

The guy was definitely the most interesting President I've read about so far. I certainly don't agree with all his politics but what a character! I had a hard time understanding his passion for conservation but yet his slaughtering of so many animals. I have nothing against hunting but the number of animals he killed during hunts was ridiculous.

gmillar, thanks for the recommendation on the Miller book. I was already into the Morris series but I will probably still pick up the book and add it to my TBR pile. But for now, on to Taft.

Editado: Mar 22, 2013, 10:52 pm

Mensagem removida pelo autor.

Editado: Set 25, 2013, 6:19 pm

I finished the second in Morris three part series

Ago 22, 2013, 9:04 am

I finished Theodore Roosevelt and His Times: A Chronicle of the Progressive Movement by Harold Howland yesterday. It is a slim blook, just over 100 pages. And it was very lauditory of Roosevelt and all that he did. Good book for a quick intro to this president, and also a quick intro into the progressive party. It is a free kindle book on Amazon.com

Set 23, 2013, 1:13 pm

Just finished Theodore Roosevelt: An Autobiography by Theodore Roosevelt. Again, free Kindle eBook from Amazon.com.

Of course, since it is written by himself, very positive look at the man and what he accomplished. Curious thing, he does not mention his wife, other than to say she read to the children. Don't even know her name. I find that rather odd, and a bit off-putting, frankly.


Bill Masom

Nov 20, 2013, 5:51 am

I attended a lecture and book signing by Doris Kearns Goodwin last Saturday at Mt. Holyoke College in MA. I had already purchased and begun to read her latest, The Bully Pulpit. It was delightful to attend an author event where said author was as impressive a speaker as she is a writer. Lots of great anecdotes about TR and Taft. Neither man, it seems, would fit well into the fabric of today's Republican Party. I have read a good deal about TR in the past, little about Taft, so this is a welcome addition to my collection. Had the book signed, of course, and got to chat with Goodwin a little. I love to attend events like this & look forward to reviewing the book here once I get through the 900 pages ...

Abr 16, 2014, 1:34 am

Theodore Roosevelt: A Strenuous Life
by Kathleen Dalton

Ms. Dalton starts out her biography of Theodore Roosevelt by pointing out his legacy as a caricature--all spectacles, mustache and teeth. She then goes on to present him as a real human being with a significant legacy in American history, but he comes across as no less a character. As she tells the tale, Theodore Roosevelt was a force of nature. He was raised in wealth and imbued with a sense of duty and an obsession to be strong and manly. Roosevelt's father set the tone for his life. Coming from wealthy stock, the elder Roosevelt devoted much free time to philanthropy and social reform. When he died in Theodore's 20th year, he left a high standard for his eldest son to achieve. But the younger Roosevelt managed to go far beyond his father's contributions.

The political climate, in Roosevelt's younger days, saw the rise of civil reform. The liberal Republican party tended to advocate for such, at least in Democratic strongholds, while also becoming the party of finance and business. Roosevelt tried to straddle the middle, having friends and advisors on both ends of the party. He was a great politician when it came to relating to the common people, but his tendency to speak his heart kept getting him in trouble. After his presidency he grew more and more liberal. In one sense he was powerless, yet he was also a man who could not be ignored.

All in all, Ms. Dalton has crafted a wonderful book. She really painted a picture of Theodore Roosevelt and the time in which he lived. I've often said that of the American presidents, John Quincy Adams was the man I admire most. But I may have to re-evaluate that in light of this biography. There were plenty of things about Theodore Roosevelt I find repulsive, but I can't help but admire his character, faith and willingness to stand up for his ideals and the needs of others.

Nov 10, 2014, 3:16 pm

FYI, for those of you looking to pickup Edmund Morris's three book series on Teddy, the first two are on sale as Kindle ebooks at Amazon for $1.99 each. (as of 11-10-14 in the US, don't know about anywhere else) Don't know how long the sale will last, so get em while you can cheap.


Jun 21, 2015, 3:04 pm

Finished reading Mornings on Horseback by David McCullough and Theodore Rex by Edmund Morris. Just ordered When Trumpets Call: Theodore Roosevelt After the White House by Patricia O'Toole. The will cover all of his life. Interesting president, a real go-getter that stuck to his guns.

Jul 23, 2015, 11:37 am

Finished TR: The Last Romantic by HW Brands. Way too lengthy. I was disappointed but I'm not sure if I'm more disappointed in the book for not being a good read or in the president for being so pompous. . . .

Dez 6, 2015, 1:06 pm

I read The Big Burn in July, which is subtitled "Teddy Roosevelt and the fire that saved America". I enjoyed it very much, and it prompted me to seek out and read the Edmund Morris trilogy on TR over the past few months. (That's The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt, Theodore Rex, and Colonel Roosevelt.) I thought the books were excellent, and gave me a lot of insight into a fascinating personality and president. I would not have thought you could make three huge books about one person into consistently compelling reading, but Morris (and Roosevelt, of course) managed to pull it off.

Nov 29, 2022, 9:48 am

>40 weejane: I’m halfway through TR: The Last Romantic. Teddy used to be one of my favorite presidents but not any more. He was hopelessly pompous, completely lacking in self-awareness, and I hated the way he treated the women in his life, especially his daughter Alice. He was a warmongering jingo so I’m revising my opinion about him. It doesn’t help that this book is ridiculously long and could have been shortened by several hundred pages without losing anything.