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all in their power to make him feel at home. On the other hand he showed that he had not forgotten them.
“By George, I am glad to see you!” he would exclaim, catching an old comrade by the hand. And bis tone of voice would show that he meant just what he said.
For a long time the people of St. Louis had been preparing for a grand fair, to be known as the Louisiana Purchase Exposition, to commemorate the purchasing from France of all that vast territory of the United States which lies between the Mississippi River and the Rocky Mountains and the Gulf of Mexico and British America. The purchase was made in 1803 for fifteen millions of dollars, and it was hoped to hold the exposition on the one hundredth anniversary, in 1903, but matters were delayed, and so the fair was postponed until 1904.
The dedication of the fair buildings at the Exposition Grounds was held on April 30, 1903, and was made a gala occasion by those interested. President Roosevelt was invited to speak, and also Ex-President Cleveland, and both made addresses of remarkable interest. Following the dedica
tion exercises a grand banquet was given at which the scene of good-fellowship was one not readily forgotten. The President wished the exposition well, and promised to do all in his power to make it a success.
Although the President had already travelled many miles, the greater part of his western trip still lay before him.
From St. Louis he went to Kansas City and to Topeka, where the citizens were as anxious to meet him as anywhere. He stopped at Sharon Springs over Sunday, and then went to Denver, and to various towns in Colorado and in New Mexico. While in New Mexico he became interested in the systems of irrigation there, and told the people what they might do if their systems of watering the ground were increased.
Having passed through the Grand Cañon, the second week in May found him in southern California. He visited Los Angeles, reviewing the annual floral parade, and many other points, and at Claremont addressed a great gathering of school children in a beautiful park filled with shrubs and flowers. The children were decidedly enthusiastic over the meeting, and when Mr. Roosevelt
went away, some pelted him with flowers, which bombardment he took in good part.
President Roosevelt's visit to Leland Stanford Jr. University in California came next, and here the students cheered him with vigor. He visited many of the more important buildings, and was entertained by members of the faculty.
His face was now set toward the Golden Gate, and San Francisco was all alive to give him an ovation. It was his first official visit to the Pacific coast, and all whom he met vied with each other to do him honor, while they listened with great attention to what he had to say.
Three days were spent in San Francisco and vicinity, and three days more in a tour of the Yosemite Valley. President Roosevelt was particularly anxious to see some of the big trees of the State, and was driven to several that are well known.
The steps of the Chief Magistrate were nów turned northward, to Oregon, and a week was spent at Portland, and in the towns and cities of the Puget Sound territory, and beyond. Here he saw much that was new and novel in the lumber trade and
in the salmon industry, and was received with a warmth that could not be mistaken.
“ He is a President for the whole country, no mistake about that,” said more than one.
“He makes you feel he is your friend the minute you lay eyes on him,” would put in another. To many in this far corner of our country, this visit of the President will ever remain as a pleasant memory. They could never hope to get to Washington, more than three thousand miles away, and to have him come out to see them was worth remembering.
The journey eastward was made through Montana to Salt Lake City and then to Cheyenne, where additional addresses were delivered. From the latter point a fast train bore him homeward, and by the next Sunday he was back in the White House once more, as fresh and hearty as ever, and well prepared to undertake whatever important work might come to hand.
And work was there in plenty. Among the first things taken up by the President was a scandal in the Post-Office Department. Without loss of time President Roosevelt ordered Postmaster General Payne to make
a thorough investigation, with the result that many contracts which were harmful to our post-office system were annulled, and some wrong-doers were brought to justice.
Toward the end of July there was considerable disturbance in the Government Printing Office at Washington because a certain assistant foreman, who had been discharged, was reinstated. All of the bookbinders were on the point of striking because they did not want the man returned, as he did not belong to their union. But President Roosevelt was firm in the matter; and in the end the man went back, and there was no strike. This affair caused an almost endless discussion in labor circles, some claiming that the union should have been upheld, while others thought differently.
During the summer, as was his usual habit, President Roosevelt, with his family, spent part of his time at his country home at Oyster Bay. This time the visit to the old homestead was of unusual interest, for, on August 17, the North Atlantic Fleet of the navy visited that vicinity, for review and inspection by the President.
It was a gala occasion, and the fleet pre