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if you want his attention or his favor." I then told him that when he had read or recited the abstract on the little card, he would find that the President would instantly tell him ever so much more about the business he represented than he knew himself, though he had spent a lifetime in it.
The President had gathered our little company in chairs about him and the leader did as he was advised to do. When he had gotten through with his presentation, which took about two minutes, the President instantly said, “Gentlemen, I understand that you want so and so; these are the facts in the case, telling them things that they themselves did not know about their own business. I reached my foot over and put it down on the toes of the leader, reminding him that Mr. Roosevelt knew more about what he was talking about than he himself did. Then the President continued, “Then you want me to do so and so." He did not wait for a word from the members of the committee, but said, “My mind is clear upon the subject, but I prefer that you should meet two members of my Cabinet, who have the responsibility in such matters; they will meet your committee this afternoon at three o'clock and you will know in time to go home to-night whether we shall be able to grant your request."
This incident not only illustrates his almost infinite knowledge of facts, but also the rapidity with which he dispatched business at his office in the White House. The matters that had engaged the attention of these business men for years, some of them for lifetime, with a matter over which they had talked and slept and dreamed, were attended to, as far as he himself was concerned, in about three minutes.
THEODORE ROOSEVELT A HERCULES-BIG
N Theodore Roosevelt we have so many great men combined in one that ordinary words and meas
urements do not justly describe him. Looking backward to find a parallel for him, we must go to the earliest history of Greece, to the mythical man called Hercules, son of the gods, powerful alike in body, mind and soul, the mightiest that Greece or the world could produce. Their classic poets pictured him as the symbol of power, wisdom and virtue.
The similarity between the Hercules of classic story and Roosevelt, our modern Hercules, is thus seen. The ancient hero was a noted pugilist; he was taught fighting by Castor; he was the best shot of the nation, and defeated in archery his teacher, Eurytus, and his three sons, who held the record up to that time. He was taught driving by Autolycus and surpassed all other charioteers. A fine scholar, he learned wisdom from Minerva. He was the most famous of hunters and was happiest when he was killing lions and other man-eating beasts. He was a great patriot, slaying a hostile king and delivering the nation from a heavy annual tribute. He was a benevolent man and busied himself in protecting the people of his country from wild beasts and other dangers. He carried a big stick, sometimes of brass, but usually a large wooden stick, with a big knot on the upper end of it, which he himself cut out of the forest.
In most of the figures which we have preserved to this day Hercules holds that big stick in his hand. He was the symbol of the Greeks' most powerful man. His weapon was strong enough and ever ready to hammer down the wrong and to protect the right. The parallel is not only in the equipment, but also in the marvelous deeds of the hero.
The king of Argus and Mycene was so jealous of the rising popularity of this great hero that he imposed upon him twelve tasks, each of which was supposed to be impossible. These are celebrated in mythology as the Twelve Labors of Hercules. The gods compelled him to undertake these twelve tasks, impossible to mortals, but equipped him for the performance of the miraculous deeds. He received from Minerva a coat of arms and helmet, from Mercury a sword, from Neptune a horse, from Jupiter a shield, from Apollo a bow and arrows, and the big stick.
The following are the twelve labors imposed upon Hercules: 1, He killed the lion of Nemæa. 2, He killed the Hydra. 3, He caught the swift stag with golden horns and brazen feet that haunted the neighborhood of Oenoe. 4, He brought alive to the king the wild boar which ravaged his realm, and destroyed the Centauri. 5, He cleaned the Augean stables. 6, He killed the carnivorous birds of Lake Stymphalus. 7, He captured the wild bull that laid waste Crete. 8, He captured the man-eating mares of Diomedes. 9, He obtained the girdle of Queen Hippolyte. 10, He killed the monster Geryon and set up the Pillars of Hercules at Gibraltar. 11, He secured the golden apples of the Hesperides. 12, He dragged on earth from Hades the three-headed dog Cerberus.