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Theodore Roosevelt

Important Terms, People, and Events

General Summary

1858–1880: Early Life

Terms

A History of the Naval War of 1812  -   · Published in 1882, A History of the Naval War of 1812 was Roosevelt's first book. The book was highly praised for its detail and style and remained the definitive book on the subject for many decades.
The Alabama  -   · The Alabama was a Confederate Navy ship that destroyed many Union vessels during the American Civil War. Roosevelt's uncle James Bulloch served as an admiral in the Confederate Navy and was responsible for building the ship in Great Britain. Roosevelt's other uncle, Irvine Bulloch, served as a midshipman aboard the same vessel.
Alaska -   · A disagreement between Great Britain and the United States over the boundary between Alaska and British Columbia climaxed in 1903. Great Britain proposed to settle the dispute via impartial arbitration, but President Roosevelt refused; however, he eventually consented. The panel of judges sides with the United States.
Annex  -   · When one country annexes another country or territory, it makes it part of its own. After the Spanish-American War, the United States annexed the Philippines and Puerto Rico, making them U.S. Protectorates.
Assistant Secretary of the Navy -   · Appointed by President William McKinley during his first term in office, Roosevelt served as the Assistant Secretary of the Navy in the Department of the Navy from 1897 to 1898. During his time as the Assistant Secretary, Roosevelt prepared the U.S. Navy for war with the Spanish Empire. In 1898 he sent orders to Admiral Dewey in Asia to make preparations for an attack on the Philippine Islands.
Badlands -   · The Badlands is an area of eastern Montana and western North and South Dakota. The area is dry and has very rugged topography. Roosevelt vacationed in the Badlands to hunt buffalo in 1883. From 1884–1887, he lived at Elkhorn Ranch in Dakota Territory.
Big Stick Diplomacy -   · Roosevelt's forceful style of foreign relations was often called Big Stick Diplomacy, which came from his favorite proverb "Speak softly and carry a big stick, and you will go far." In his dealings with other countries, Roosevelt would pressure other countries into doing what he wanted them to do. The Roosevelt Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine is a prime example of Big Stick Diplomacy.
Cuba  -   · Cuba, an island approximately ninety miles south of Florida, was once a territory of the Spanish Empire. The United States liberated Cuba in the Spanish-American War in 1898 and 1899. Several key battles were fought on Cuba: the Battle of San Juan Hill and the Battle of Santiago Harbor led by Admiral Sampson. Once liberated, the Cubans established their own government; however, the Platt Amendment restricted Cuba from total sovereignty.
Dakota Territory -   · Dakota Territory refers to the area now known as the states of North and South Dakota. These areas had not yet attained statehood when Roosevelt lived there from 1884–1887. Roosevelt owned the Elkhorn Ranch in the territory and enjoyed hunting buffalo, antelope, and grizzly bears.
Elkhorn Ranch -   · Located near the town of Medora and on the banks of the Little Missouri River, the Elkhorn Ranch was Roosevelt's cattle ranch in the Dakota Territory from 1884–1887. Roosevelt quit the cattle ranching business after a cold spell in 1886 killed most of the cattle and made Medora a ghost town.
Food and Drug Administration -   · The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is a government agency that is responsible for ensuring that food and medicine producers follow guidelines and safety regulations. The FDA was created during Roosevelt's Presidency after Upton Sinclair published The Jungle, his novel about working conditions in the Chicago meatpacking industry, in 1906.
Grand Old Party -   · The Republican Party.
Hepburn Bill -   · Congress passed the Hepburn Bill in 1906 to regulate rebate rates, a mechanism trusts often used to create a monopoly and destroy competition. The bill gave the Interstate Commerce Commission to set maximum rebate rates.
Hunting Trips of a Ranchman -   · Roosevelt wrote the book Hunting Trips of a Ranchman while living in Dakota Territory. The book was published in June of 1885 and is mostly an autobiographical account of Roosevelt's hunting adventures in the West.
Imperialism  -   · Imperialism is the idea that powerful nations must have colonies throughout the world; oftentimes these colonies were once sovereign countries, but lost their independence in wars with the imperialist states. Powerful nations seek colonies to expand their military or commercial interests. The United States was considered an imperialist nation during the 1890s and first decade of the 1900s under Presidents William McKinley and Theodore Roosevelt.
Monopoly  -   · A business is said to have a monopoly when it is the only supplier of a certain good. Many large companies called trusts in the late 1800s and early 1900s attempted to secure monopolies on their products. Although having a monopoly on a product was not illegal, securing monopolies via unfair business practices and driving out competition was illegal under the 1890 Sherman Act.
Monroe Doctrine -   · The Monroe Doctrine declared that European powers have no authority in the Western Hemisphere and must not involve themselves in the affairs of North and South American countries. The doctrine also claimed that the United States had the right to intervene anywhere in the hemisphere to ensure its security. The Monroe Doctrine was named for President James Monroe, who declared the doctrine in the early 1820s.
Morocco -   · Morocco is a country in North Africa that was a French colony during Roosevelt's Presidency. In 1905, President Roosevelt prevented a European war when he secretly mediated a dispute over Morocco amongst France, England, and Germany.
Morton Hall -   · Morton Hall was one of the headquarters of the Republican political machine in New York City in the late 1800s. Roosevelt became interested in politics in the 1880s after attending political meetings in the hall.
National Forest Service -   · The National Forest Service was created during Roosevelt's Presidency to protect and help conserve the National Forests and National Parks in the United States. The service's creation is one example of Roosevelt's policies concerning conservation.
New York City Police Commissioner -   · The New York City Police Commissioner is the head of the New York Police Department. Roosevelt served as commissioner from 1895 to 1897.
New York State Assembly -   · The New York State Assembly is New York State's legislative branch of government. Roosevelt served three years (each term lasting one year) in the Assembly from 1882–1884.
Nobel Peace Prize -   · President Roosevelt became the first American to receive the Nobel Peace Prize when he successfully negotiated a peace treaty between the Russians and Japanese to end the 1904–1905 Russo-Japanese War. The treaty was drafted in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.
Northern Securities -   · The Northern Securities Company was a large railroad trust in the West. Financier J.P. Morgan created the trust and heavily invested in the company. The company was the first President Roosevelt attacked in 1902, claiming the company was a railroad monopoly and violated the Sherman Act. The government won the lawsuit; the breakup of Northern Securities encouraged the government to continue prosecuting the trusts.
Open Door Policy -   · The Open Door Policy was one of President McKinley's imperialist policies. Secretary of state John Hay announced that China's commercial "door" should be open to all nations and not just Japan and the European powers.
Oyster Bay -   · Oyster Bay is the small town in New York where Roosevelt built his home Sagamore Hill.
Panama -   · Panama is a small isthmus connecting North and South America and separating the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. In 1903, President Roosevelt secretly supported a coup to overthrow Panama's Colombian rulers so that the United States could purchase land to build the Panama Canal.
Panama Canal -   · The Panama Canal is a waterway through the isthmus of Panama that connects the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. Teddy Roosevelt considered his seizure of Panama and the building of the canal to be his greatest achievement as President.
Philippine Islands  -   · The Philippines is a string of islands of the southeastern coast of China that was a part of the Spanish Empire until the Spanish-American War in 1898 and 1899. On May 1, 1898, Admiral Dewey defeated the Spanish fleet harbored in Manila, the capitol of the Philippines. After the war, the United States annexed the Philippines, but faced bitter opposition from nationalist rebels led by Emilio Aguinaldo.
Platt Amendment -   · The Platt Amendment was an amendment to the constitution of Cuba after it was liberated from Spain in the Spanish-American War in 1898 and 1899. Although the U.S. granted Cuba its freedom after the war, this American- engineered amendment severely hindered Cuba's autonomy. It stated that the U.S. could intervene in the affairs of Cuba any time it deemed necessary.
Plutocracy  -   · The plutocracy refers to the few Americans who controlled an extraordinary amount of wealth. Prominent members included oil tycoon John David Rockefeller, steel producer Andrew Carnegie, and banker J.P. Morgan who was also the richest man in the world at the time with a net worth of over one billion dollars. Many of Roosevelt's policies focused on reducing the power of the plutocracy.
Political Machine  -   · Political machines were Democratic and Republican Party organizations that controlled the election and campaigning processes. Machines often controlled local and state politics in large cities during the late 1800s and early 1900s. Powerful politicians called bosses controlled the machines. Boss Thomas Platt ran the Republican political machine in New York City at the turn of the century.
Populist Party  -   · The Populist Party was a third political party that advocated extremely liberal legislation and policies to help primarily the poor Midwestern farmers. They desired "free silver"–more and cheaper money to be printed–and the U.S. dollar to be backed by silver instead of gold. The party's champion was William Jennings Bryan. By the early 1900s, the party had become essentially dead because Americans outside the U.S. didn't seek the same goals. The Progressive movement did spread throughout the country and many of its original idealism stemmed from the Populist movement.
Portsmouth, New Hampshire -   · In 1905 President Roosevelt negotiated a peace treaty between Russia and Japan in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. For his efforts, the President became the first American to win the Nobel Peace Prize.
Progressivism  -   · Progressives were primarily northerners who sought reform in government and society in the early 1900s. President Roosevelt was the most active Progressive politician, even campaigning under the Progressive Party ticket in the Presidential election of 1912.
Reclamation Act -   · The Reclamation Act of 1902 set aside federal money to irrigate the dry, unlivable lands in the West so that settlers could use the land to farm. The act is an example of one of the many pieces of conservation legislation passed during the Roosevelt administrations.
Roosevelt Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine  -   · In 1904 President Roosevelt declared that only the United States can police the Western Hemisphere, and reiterated the terms of the Monroe Doctrine that the European powers must not become involved in the affairs of Latin America. Later, this statement came to be known as Roosevelt's Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine.
Round Robin -   · The Round Robin was a letter drafted after the Spanish-American War by Col. Roosevelt and signed by many high-ranking military commanders. The letter accused the War Department of being unprepared for the war, and called for a removal of all U.S. troops occupying Cuba and Puerto Rico.
Sagamore Hill -   · Sagamore Hill was Roosevelt's twenty-three-room home in Oyster Bay, New York. The house served was completed in 1885, and served as the unofficial summer White House during his Presidency. Roosevelt died at Sagamore Hill on January 5, 1919, and was buried near the house.
San Francisco Board of Education -   · In 1906 the San Francisco Board of Education expelled Japanese students from the city's public school system in response to the overwhelming number of Japanese migrants settling in the area. Japan was deeply angered over this decision and secretly prepared for war. War was averted when President Roosevelt negotiated with Japan. Soon, the school board began readmitting students.
Santo Domingo -   · Roosevelt issued the Roosevelt Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine in 1904 to protect the governments of Santo Domingo, Venezuela and other Latin American countries from threats from the European powers.
Sherman Act -   · Congress passed the Sherman Act in 1890 in an attempt to eliminate trusts and the unfair business practices they employed to secure monopolies on their products.
Spain  -   · During the late 1800s, the Spanish Empire was crumbling but still held onto several key colonies including the Philippines in Asia and Cuba and Puerto Rico in the Caribbean. The United States defeated Spain in the Spanish-American War in 1899–1899 and liberated these colonies from Spanish control. The loss of these territories destroyed the remnants of the Spanish Empire.
Spoils system -   · The spoils system refers to the practice of elected or appointed government officials hiring friends rather than qualified candidates to fill bureaucratic offices. As U.S. Civil Service Commissioner, Roosevelt tried to reform the spoils system and establish a meritocracy where positions are filled based on candidates' qualifications.
Square Deal -   · The Square Deal was President Roosevelt's domestic program primarily aimed at helping middle class citizens. The policies of the Square Deal involved attacking the plutocracy and trusts while at the same time protecting business from the extreme demands of organized labor.
Standard Oil -   · Standard Oil was a large oil trust run by plutocrat John D. Rockefeller. Roosevelt used the Hepburn Bill to prosecute Standard Oil for violating the Sherman Act.
Tammany Hall -   · Tammany Hall was the headquarters of the most powerful political machine in New York City in the late 1800s and early 1900s.
Tennis Cabinet -   · The Tennis Cabinet was a collection of Roosevelt's most trusted and loyal supporters within his administration. Younger than the majority of the cabinet secretaries, Roosevelt often invited these men to join him in his daily exercise routine which included walks through obstacle courses, jujitsu, boxing, and tennis among other activities.
The Winning of the West  -   ·  The Winning of the West was a multi-volume book Roosevelt published in 1894 that describes the settlement of the American West.
Trusts  -   · Trusts were large corporations that specialized in producing one product and attempted to create a monopoly. There were scores of trusts in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Within months of becoming President, Roosevelt attacked the trusts, prosecuting them under the authority of the Sherman Act.
U.S. Civil Service Commission  -   · The U.S. Civil Service Commission is responsible for controlling the government bureaucracy. Roosevelt, appointed to be the head of this commission by President Benjamin Harrison in 1888, kept the post until 1895. During his time as commissioner, he sought to reform the spoils system.
U.S. Steel Company  -   · The U.S. Steel Company was trust that controlled most all of the steel production in the United States during Roosevelt's Presidency. Its founder was the wealthy philanthropist Andrew Carnegie. In 1907, J.P. Morgan had U.S. Steel purchase the Tennessee Iron and Coal Company to prevent a stock market crash during the Panic of 1907.
Venezuela -   · Venezuela is a country in northern South America. In 1903, British and German warships began shelling its coastline when the Venezuelan government refused to pay its debts. President Roosevelt issued the Roosevelt Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine in 1904 to protect Venezuela, Santo Domingo and other Latin American countries from the European powers.
Wall Street -   · Wall Street is a major street in New York City's financial district and one of the most important financial centers in the United States. The term often refers collectively to the bankers, financiers, and investors who work on Wall Street.

People

Emilio Aguinaldo -  Emilio Aguinaldo led the Filipino resistance movement against the Spanish Empire before and during the Spanish-American War in 1898 and 1899. When the U.S. annexed the Philippine Islands after the war, Aguinaldo turned and fought against U.S. troops. His war lasted for several years until his capture in 1902.
Robert Bacon -  Robert Bacon served after Elihu Root as President Roosevelt's Secretary of State in 1909. The two men met as students at Harvard College and remained lifelong friends.
William Jennings Bryan  -  William Jennings Bryan ran for President four times in his lifetime and was defeated four times. He ran on the Populist Party ticket and the Democratic ticket between 1892 and 1912. He advocated printing more money to help impoverished farmers and eliminating the gold standard.
Grover Cleveland  -  Grover Cleveland was the twenty-second and twenty-fourth President of the United States. He served his first term as President from 1885–1889 and his second term from 1893–1897. While serving in the New York State Assembly, Roosevelt worked closely on reforming the New York Civil Service with Cleveland who was then Governor of New York. When Cleveland, a Democrat, defeated Republican Benjamin Harrison for the Presidency in 1892, Cleveland kept Roosevelt as head of the U.S. Civil Service Commission.
Leon Czolgosz -  Anarchist Leon Czolgosz assassinated President William McKinley on September 6, 1901, in Buffalo, New York.
Admiral Dewey  -  Admiral Dewey commanded the American Naval fleet in Asia during the Spanish-American War. On the morning of May 1, 1898, he sailed quietly into Manila Harbor and launched a surprise attack against the Spanish fleet in the Philippine Islands. He won the battle within hours.
Mark Hanna  -  Mark Hanna coordinated the William McKinley's Presidential campaigns of 1896 and 1900, and coached President Roosevelt during his first few months in office.
Benjamin Harrison  -  Benjamin Harrison served as the twenty-third President of the United States from 1889–1893. Grover Cleveland served as President during both the term before and the term after Harrison. A Republican, Harrison appointed Roosevelt the head of the U.S. Civil Service Commission in 1889, to reward Roosevelt for his services and dedication during his campaign for President.
John Hay -  John Hay served as President William McKinley's Secretary of State. An imperialist, Hay was responsible for creating the Open Door Policy in China.
William Randolph Hearst  -  William Randolph Heart was the editor of the popular newspaper The New York World in the late 1890s. While editor, he competed fiercely with rival New York newspapers for sales. His sensationalistic articles on the atrocities in Cuba helped lead the nation into the Spanish-American War of 1898 and 1899. Many give him credit for actually starting the war in his quest to sell newspapers. He sent the famous line, "You furnish the pictures, and I'll furnish the war!" to his artist Frederic Remington in Cuba.
Philander Knox -  Philander Knox served as President Roosevelt's Attorney General, and was responsible for filing the government lawsuits against Northern Securities, Standard Oil, and forty-one other trusts. Knox also served as Secretary of War under President William Howard Taft.
Henry Cabot Lodge  -  Henry Cabot Lodge was Roosevelt's closest personal friend and political ally. The two met while Roosevelt was a student and Lodge a professor at Harvard. Lodge served in the Senate for many years and acted as Roosevelt's voice in Congress.
Alice Roosevelt Longworth  -  Alice Roosevelt Longworth was the daughter of Roosevelt and his first wife, Alice Hathaway Lee Roosevelt. She was born on February 12, 1884. She lived with Roosevelt's sister while her father was away in Dakota Territory, and then returned to live with him and her stepmother Edith Roosevelt. Young Alice and her father disagreed on many things, and there was often tension between the two. In 1906 she married Congressman Nicholas Longworth at an extravagant White House wedding.
Nicholas Longworth -  Nicholas Longworth was a Republican Congressman from the First District of Ohio. He married young Princess Alice on February 17, 1906, in a huge White House wedding.
Captain Alfred T. Mahan  -  Captain Mahan published a book in 1890 entitled The Influence of Sea Power Upon History, 1660–1783 in which he argued that naval power is essential to develop a strong nation. He also argued that strong nations should seek friendly ports, colonies, and territories abroad to use as naval bases and as commercial outlets. Mahan was an ardent imperialist. Roosevelt strongly believed Mahan's ideas.
William McKinley  -  William McKinley was the twenty-fifth President of the United States and served from 1897–1901. He was elected President twice but served only six months of his second term. On September 6, 1901, he was assassinated by anarchist Leon Czolgosz. After McKinley's death, his Vice President Roosevelt was sworn in as President. McKinley was President during the Spanish-American War of 1898 and 1899, and was known for being an imperialist.
James Monroe -  James Monroe was the fifth President of the United States. He is responsible for authoring the Monroe Doctrine.
Marquis de Mores -  The Marquis de Mores was a French nobleman and adventurer who came to Dakota Territory shortly before Roosevelt himself moved to Elkhorn Ranch. The Marquis founded the town closest to Roosevelt's ranch and named it Medora after his wife. During Roosevelt's cattle ranching days, the two nearly dueled over rights to cattle land.
J.P. Morgan  -  J.P. Morgan was a Wall Street banker and the wealthiest man in the world during Roosevelt's Presidency, worth over one billion dollars. He was the embodiment of the plutocracy. He organized the creation of Northern Securities and helped end the Coal Strike and avert a depression during the Panic of 1907.
Muckrakers  -  Muckrakers were writers in the late 1800s and early 1900s who exposed government and social misdeeds and injustices. In a 1906 speech, President Roosevelt made an allusion to the novel Pilgrim's Progress when he compared these expose writers to the man with the muckrake who could only look downward. From then on, the name stuck. Prominent muckrakers included Upton Sinclair, Ida Tarbell, and Lincoln Steffens.
Thomas Platt  -  Thomas Platt, or Boss Tom Platt, served as a United States Senator from New York in the 1890s and early 1900s, and ran the Republican political machine. In 1898 he supported and helped elect Roosevelt as Governor of New York. When Roosevelt defied the machine with his reformist ideas, Platt nominated him for Vice President of the United States in the election of 1900, hoping Roosevelt would be elected so that he would leave New York.
Alice Hathaway Lee Roosevelt  -  Alice Hathaway Lee was Roosevelt's first wife. The two met during Teddy's junior year at Harvard and married two years later on his twenty-second birthday, October 27, 1880. The two lived happily in New York City for three years while Roosevelt served in the New York State Assembly. On February 12, 1884, Alice gave birth to their first and only child, Alice Roosevelt. Two days later, the elder Alice died unexpectedly from kidney failure. For the rest of his life, Theodore refused to speak about his first wife.
Archibald Roosevelt  -  Archibald Roosevelt was born in April of 1894, and was Theodore's and Edith Roosevelt's fourth child. While growing up in the White House, he was a very active member of the White House Gang and loved to play practical jokes with his brother Quentin.
Edith Roosevelt  -  Edith Carrow Roosevelt was Roosevelt's second wife. The two married on December, 2, 1886, in London. Although she was Teddy's second wife, she was one of his first friends. The two had been childhood sweethearts and had exchanged visits and letters for most of their lives until Teddy entered Harvard. The two had five children of their own–Ted, Kermit, Ethel, Archie, and Quentin–cared for her stepdaughter Alice Roosevelt as if she were her own child.
Ethel Roosevelt  -  Ethel Roosevelt was Theodore and Edith Roosevelt's third child.
Franklin Delano Roosevelt -  Franklin D. Roosevelt was a distant cousin of Roosevelt and his family and a member of the upper Washington D.C. social circles during Teddy Roosevelt's Presidency. He later became President of the United States.
Kermit Roosevelt  -  Born in Autumn of 1889, Kermit Roosevelt was the second child of Theodore and Edith Roosevelt. In 1914, he traveled on his father's expedition to the Amazon basin.
Martha Bulloch Roosevelt -  Martha Bulloch Roosevelt was President Roosevelt's mother. She came from the prominent Georgian Bulloch family that originally settled in the United States from Scotland.
Quentin Roosevelt  -  Quentin Roosevelt was born in November of 1887 and was the last of Theodore and Edith Roosevelt's children. Growing up in the White House, he and his brother Archie Roosevelt were notorious for their love of adventure and practical jokes. He served as a combat pilot during World War I and died on July 14, 1918, when his plane was shot down behind enemy lines. His death broke his father's heart.
Theodore Roosevelt, Sr. -  Theodore Roosevelt, Sr., was President Roosevelt's father. Father and son were inseparable as young Teedie grew up. He encouraged his son to build his body in order to develop his mind. He also instilled in his son a strong sense of morals that would stay with him for the rest of his life. President Roosevelt claimed his father was the greatest man he had ever known and was crushed when he died during his sophomore year at Harvard.
Theodore Roosevelt III  -  Theodore Roosevelt III was President Roosevelt's and his second wife Edith Roosevelt's first child together. Ted, as he was often called, was born at Sagamore Hill in September of 1887. He fought during World War I as a field commander; helped organize the American Legion; and, as his father had before him, served in the New York State Assembly and as Assistant Secretary of the Navy. He also served as Governor of Puerto Rico from 1929 to 1932. He died while commanding an infantry regiment in France during World War II.
Elihu Root -  Elihu Root was President McKinley's Secretary of War in 1899 and Roosevelt's Secretary of State until 1909 when he was appointed to the U.S. Senate. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1912.
Rough Riders -  The Rough Riders, led by Colonels Theodore Roosevelt and Leonard Wood, were the most colorful Army regiment in the history of the United States. Recruited to fight the Spanish Empire in the 1898–1899 Spanish-American War, the Rough Riders were a motley mix of one thousand volunteers. The came from all walks of life; some were college boys and the sons of wealthy businessmen, others were gamblers, cowboys, and even outlaws. On July 1, 1898, the Rough Riders helped capture Santiago, Cuba in the Battle of San Juan Hill. The regiment took more casualties than any other fighting unit in the war.
Admiral Sampson  -  Admiral Sampson led the U.S. Naval forces in the siege on Santiago, Cuba in July 1898, during the Spanish-American War. Much like his colleague Admiral Dewey had done in the Philippine Islands, Sampson defeated the Spanish forces within hours.
Upton Sinclair -  Upton Sinclair was a muckraker in the late 1800s and early 1900s. His 1906 novel The Jungle depicted the horrors of the Chicago stockyards; it was so disturbing that Roosevelt ordered an immediate investigation after he read the book.
William Howard Taft  -  William Taft was a loyal supporter of Roosevelt during his Presidency, and served as Roosevelt's Governor of the Philippine Islands and as Secretary of War. He and Roosevelt were steadfast friends. When Teddy refused to run for a third presidential term in 1908, he nominated Taft as the Republican candidate. Taft was elected in 1908, defeating William Jennings Bryan. After Roosevelt returned from Europe and Africa, the two men had a political disagreement that soon turned into a bitter personal hatred. They ran against each other in the election of 1912, Taft as the Republican candidate and Roosevelt as the Bull Moose Party candidate. They split the Republican Party, allowing Woodrow Wilson to become President. Taft and Roosevelt later reconciled their differences. Taft also served as a U.S. Supreme Court justice.
Booker T. Washington -  A self-educated former slave, Booker T. Washington rose up from poverty to distinguish himself as one of the nation's most prominent educators. He founded the Tuskeegee Institute.
White House Gang -  The White House Gang was a colloquial name for President Roosevelt's children and their friends. The group enjoyed pulling pranks on the President and his guests.
Kaiser Wilhelm II -  Kaiser Wilhelm II, was the German Emperor during Roosevelt's Presidency. The two men were at first friends, but as World War I approached, their friendship died. Many consider the Kaiser's foreign policies to be at least partly responsible for World War I.
Woodrow Wilson  -  A former professor of political economy and jurisprudence at Bryn Mawr, Wesleyan, and Princeton Universities and former president of Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson rose to fame as an eloquent yet dynamic speaker. He became Governor of New Jersey in 1910 and established himself as a Progressive with his reformist ideas. A Democrat, he ran against Roosevelt and William Howard Taft in the election of 1912 and defeated both men because they had split the Republican Party. He was elected President again in 1916, and served as Commander in Chief during World War I.

Events

Algeciras Conference -  The Algeciras Conference was a secret conference to negotiate a dispute amongst Germany, England, and France over the division of Morocco in 1905. President Roosevelt mediated the conference, and eventually sided with England and France against Germany. Although the breakout of World War I was averted at the conference, many historians now see the outcome as the first step towards a U.S. alliance with France and England.
American Revolution -  The American Revolution was fought from 1776 to 1882 between Great Britain and the newly formed United States of America. Please see History SparkNotes.
American Civil War  -  The American Civil War was fought from 1861 to 1865 when several Southern states seceded from the Union to form the Confederate States of America led by President Jefferson Davis. It was the bloodiest war in the history of the United States. Please see History SparkNotes and the Abraham Lincoln biography SparkNote.
Coal Strike  -  The 1902 Coal Strike was President Roosevelt's first test in handling domestic emergencies. When the minors continued to strike after many offers to settle the dispute at been made, Roosevelt threatened to end the strike with 10,000 Army troopers. J.P. Morgan able to negotiate a settlement before that became necessary.
Explosion of the Maine  -  The mysterious explosion and sinking of the U.S. battleship Maine in Havana Harbor, Cuba was the impetus for many Americans to clamor for war against the Spanish Empire in 1898.
Panic of 1907 -  The Panic of 1907 hit the United States when the Knickerbocker Trust Company of New York failed. Conservatives accused Roosevelt of having caused the panic with his Progressive policies while Roosevelt countered that it was the excessive wealth of the plutocracy that had caused it. Actually, neither accusation was accurate; the recession was a global phenomenon. Depression was averted when banker J.P. Morgan merged the Tennessee Iron and Coal Company with U.S. Steel.
Russo-Japanese War -  The Russo-Japanese War was fought in 1904 and 1905 between Russia and Japan. Japan technically won the war, but agreed to President Roosevelt's offer to mediate and negotiate a peace treaty.
Battle of San Juan Hill  -  The Battle of San Juan Hill was fought on July 1, 1898, near Santiago, Cuba. Colonel Roosevelt led his Rough Riders on the charge up the hill. The regiment took many casualties, but captured the Spanish stronghold at the top.
Spanish-American War -  The Spanish-American War was fought in 1898 and 1899 to expel the Spanish Empire from the Americas. Many Americans convinced themselves that the war was fought the lofty moral purpose of ending the atrocities the Spaniards inflicted on the native inhabitants on Cuba and other colonies. The war was fought on two fronts: in the Caribbean and on the Philippine Islands. The United States won the war and the two countries drafted the Treaty of Paris in 1899.
World War I -  World War I, also known as the Great War prior to World War II, was fought with Germany, the Ottoman Empire, and the Austro-Hungarian Empire on one side against France, England, Russia, and eventually the United States on the other. The war was extremely bloody and a war of attrition. Please see History SparkNotes.

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