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CHAPTER XXXII

PERSONAL CHARACTERISTICS OF THEODORE ROOSEVELT

-THE PRESIDENT'S FAMILY - LIFE AT THE WHITE HOUSE - OUR COUNTRY AND ITS FUTURE

In reading over the foregoing pages the question may occur to some of my young readers, How is it possible for President Roosevelt to accomplish so much and still have time in which to occasionally enjoy himself by travelling or by going on a hunting tour?

The answer is a very simple one. Mr. Roosevelt works systematically, as do all who want their labor to amount to something. Years ago, when he was physically weak, he determined to make himself strong. He persisted in vigorous exercise, especially in the open air, and in the end attained a bodily health which any ordinary man may

well envy

The President does each day's work as it comes before him. He does not borrow trouble or cross a bridge before he comes

to it. Whatever there is to do he does to the very best of his ability, and he allows future complications to take care of themselves. If a mistake is made, he does not worry continually over it, but keeps it in mind, so that a like mistake shall not occur again. When once his hand is on the plough, he does not believe in turning back. He has unlimited faith in the future of our glorious country, and a like faith in the honor and courage of his fellow-citizens.

Any man to be an intelligent worke cannot be dissipated, and the President is a good illustration of this. He has a good appetite, but eats moderately, and does not depend upon stimulants or tobacco to “brace him up” when the work is extra heavy. He goes out nearly every day for a walk, a ride on horseback, or a drive with some members of his family, and as a result of this, when night comes, sleeps soundly and arises the next morning as bright and fresh as ever.

This is the first time that a President with a large family has occupied the White House. Other Presidents have had a few children, but Mr. Roosevelt took possession

with six, a hearty, romping crowd, the younger members of which thought it great fun to explore the executive mansion when first they moved in. The President loves his children dearly, and is not above “playing bear” with the little ones when time permits and they want some fun.

Of Mrs. Roosevelt it can truthfully be said that she makes a splendid “first lady in the land.” She takes a great interest in all social functions, and an equal interest in what is best for her boys and girls and their friends. She is very charitable, and each year contributes liberally to hundreds of bazaars and fairs held throughout our country.

The oldest child of the President is Miss Alice Lee Roosevelt, named after her mother, and now Mrs. Nicholas Longworth. Although but a step-daughter to the present Mrs. Roosevelt, the two are as intimate and loving as if of the same flesh and blood. Mrs. Longworth is a prime favorite in Washington society and has assisted at several functions of importance.

All of the other children were born after Mr. Roosevelt's second marriage. His oldest

son is Theodore Roosevelt, Jr., commonly called by his chums, Teddy, Jr. He is a lad of eighteen, bright and clever, and went from the preparatory school at Groton, Massachusetts, to Harvard University, where he is at present a sophomore. He loves outdoor games, and is said to possess many tastes in common with his father.

The other members of the family are, Kermit, sixteen, Ethel Carew, fourteen, Archibald Bullock, eleven, and a lively little boy named Quentin, who is eight.

Some time ago a distinguished member of the English Educational Commission visited this country and made an inspection of our school system. When asked what had impressed him most deeply, he answered:

66 The children of the President of the United States sitting side by side with the children of your workingmen in the public schools."

This simple little speech speaks volumes for the good, hard common sense of our President. He believes thoroughly in our public institutions, and knows the real value of sending out his boys to fight their own battles in the world at large.

[graphic]

Photograph by Pach Bros., N.Y.

PRESIDENT ROOSEVELT AND HIS FAMILY.

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