17 Interesting Facts You Might Not Know About Teddy Roosevelt

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Teddy Roosevelt’s face is etched on the side of Mt. Rushmore and his accomplishments are firmly implanted into the history of the United States.

Here are 17 facts about one of America’s most influential presidents.

Fact 1: When he was a child, Theodore Roosevelt witnesses the funeral procession of Abraham Lincoln. We know this today because there is a photograph of young Roosevelt perched in a window watching the procession in New York City in 1865.

Fact 2: Theodore Roosevelt’s mother and wife died on the same day, on Valentine’s Day in 1884. That night Roosevelt wrote in his diary „The lights has gone out of my life“.

Fact 3: In 1895, Roosevelt was appointed New York City police commissioner. He was fairly unpopular in New York for banning the sale of alcohol in saloons on Sundays.

Fact 4: Roosevelt became the 26th American president in 1901, at the age of 42. He served two terms. Before he left office in 1909, he hand-picked William Howard Taft as his successor and worked to get him elected.

Fact 5: Roosevelt was the first president to win a Nobel Peace Prize. He received this prestigious award for negotiating the peace in the Russo-Japanese war in 1904-5 and he also settled a dispute between France and Germany over the division of Morocco.

Fact 6: Roosevelt wrote about 35 books and an estimated 150,000 letters during his lifetime. He wrote his first book at the age of 23 called „The Naval War of 1812“.

Fact 7: Roosevelt was the first ever president to travel outside of the continental United States during his office! In 1906 he made his way to Panama.

Fact 8: Although a church goer, Roosevelt believed in the separation of the Church and State, while taking his presidential oath he did not swear on the Bible.

Fact 9: Roosevelt was blind in one eye due to a boxing injury he sustained in the White House. Boxing was his long time hobby which, after his injury, he gave up for jiu-jitsu.

Fact 10: In 1884, Roosevelt ran for mayor of New York City, but lost.

Fact 11: On October 11th, 1910, Teddy became the first president to fly in an airplane! He took a four minute flight in a plane built by the Wright brothers.

Fact 12: At the age of 58 and during the outbreak of World War I, Roosevelt volunteered to go to the front lines. He lobbied President Wilson to send him to France with a 200,000 man expeditionary force. However, his son Quentin got called into action instead of him. Quentin was a pilot and was killed after his plane was shot down in France in 1918. Roosevelt died a year later in Oyster Bay, New York.

Fact 13: Roosevelt’s nicknames include Teddy, Trust Buster, TR and the Great Conservationist.

Fact 14: Roosevelt had six children.

Fact 15: On October 14th, 1912, Roosevelt was shot by an unemployed saloonkeeper. At the time Roosevelt was a Progressive Party candidate and was scheduled to deliver a 90-minute speech. Despite his injury, he refused to go to the hospital.  The opening lines of his speech were „Friends, I shall ask you to be as quiet as possible. I don’t know whether you fully understand that I have just been shot. It takes more than that to kill a bull moose“.

Fact 16: Theodore and Franklin Roosevelt were fifth cousins, but Franklin’s wife Eleanor was Theodore’s niece.

Fact 17: Roosevelt was intrigued by naval power. He served as the Undersecretary of the Navy in 1898 and sent the American navy on a worldwide tour in 1907 as a display of strength. His ultimate naval achievement was the Panama Canal.

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