Theodore Roosevelt | 2012-10-17 16:14
Late in his life, Theodore Roosevelt, the 26th president of the United States, said "No man has had a happier life than I have led. . . a happier life in every way."
One of his greatest sources of happiness was his family. In this picture, you see Roosevelt with his second wife, Edith, and their five children, Theodore Jr., Kermit, Ethel, Archie, and Quentin. Alice, Roosevelt's daughter from his first wife, is also in the picture. As president, Roosevelt was responsible for the construction of the Panama Canal and increasing the number of national parks and national forests. He won the Nobel Peace Prize for mediating the Russo-Japanese War.
Roosevelt was known for his endless energy. Buffalo Bill called him "a cyclone" and Mark Twain called him "an earthquake." As a young man he spent two years as a cowboy on his ranch in the Dakota Territory. When Spain and the U.S. went to war in 1898, he organized a Volunteer Cavalry (an army unit on horseback), which was called "the Rough Riders." How do you think Roosevelt did in the war? 
Roosevelt came back from the Spanish-American War as a national hero. He liked to say, "We had a 'bully' fight." "Bully" was a slang word at the time that meant "first-rate" or "splendid." Another phrase he liked to use when facing a problem was "never around, always through."
Roosevelt was a very determined president. During his term, he forced coal mine owners to negotiate with striking miners, pushed through laws to conserve land and won the Nobel Peace Prize for helping to end a war between Japan and Russia in 1905. Knowing what you do about Roosevelt, what other kinds of issues do you think he focused on during his years as President? 
Roosevelt's love of nature and wildlife inspired him to help conserve land and create national parks. While he was president, he created 51 national parks, four big-game refuges, and the first national game reserve. He also added 43 million acres of national forest. When Roosevelt believed in something he worked hard to promote it. He believed that the only thing worth doing in life was hard work for a worthy cause. Do you agree with him? 
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