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many governments and the lives of many peoples. Not only has Mr. Roosevelt in the “Winning of the West” given to the world the best record of the settlement and development of America, but he has written into the pages of that splendid work the very spirit of the nation and illumined the stirring drama of the settlement of these States with the glory of sublime patriotism which cannot fail to have a marked influence on the minds of the coming generations. It has been claimed by some that the historian should be one in whom the faculty of the imagination was almost, if not entirely, lacking. These critics hold that history should be a colorless record of facts as they transpired, and that the thought of the author should have no place in the record of the times he would portray. If this be the true criterion by which a historian is to be judged, then is Mr. Roosevelt going far afield when he sets himself to write history. His mind is so active and his thought so positive that the compilation of facts and dates without their accompanying significance would repel him in the same measure that he is attracted by fierce battles on sea and land, and the individual instances of heroism and devotion. It is this faculty of the imagination that places Mr. Roosevelt's writings on American subjects in the front rank of all our country’s records and gives to his descriptions of frontier life a genuine value. Much that he has written has its foundation in actual experience, and he describes these events with a fidelity to nature and a dramatic power that must thrill the dullest reader, while to those who are familiar with the scenes and actions which make up the greater part of his books on the Far West, his writings have an indescribable fascination. For a man who is still young Mr. Roosevelt has a large number of books to his credit. He has been barely twenty years out of college. Sixteen of these years he has spent in active and laborious public service. A man who has been a member of the Legislature, Civil-Service Commissioner, President of the Police Board of New York, Vice-President of the United States, and President, all within a score of years, could hardly be expected to be a voluminous writer. But in that period Mr. Roosevelt has published a half a dozen serious works on history and biography, three original works on hunting and ranch life, a history of the “Rough Riders” and several volumes of essays of high character and permanent value. Mr. Roosevelt's first venture in the field of letters (aside from a share in college journalism) was made in 1882, just two years after his graduation from Harvard, and while he was a member of the assembly of New York State. The theme chosen gives an insight into the character of the man on the threshold of a career that was eventually to terminate in the White House. He was a born patriot, and the dash and pluck of the American seamen must have appealed strongly to the fighting side of his nature. His first work, a history of “The Naval War of 1812,” found a ready response among the men who go down to the sea in ships for the honor of their country's flag, and the book at once took high rank among the treatises of its kind. The demand was such as to warrant the appearance of a third edition within a year, enlarged by a chapter describing Jackson's victory at New Orleans. Of this second edition Mr. W. P. Trent, writing in the Forum for July, 1896, says: “This added chapter and certain remarks in the new preface are more important to the critic of Mr. Roosevelt’s work than all the rest of his interesting book, for they show that thus early the theme of his greatest work—the career and prowess of the Western frontiersman—had laid fast hold upon his imagination.” This chapter deals with the victory of Jackson and his Tennesseeans at New Orleans. The author's style here shows all the vigor, fluency and epigrammatic strength which has become so characteristic of his later utterances. It is a chapter that must be consulted by every student of American history who wishes to understand what is likely to always remain one of the most brilliant feats of arms of a nation rich in such exploits. The nervous force of Mr. Roosevelt’s style found room for full play in the description of this great and brilliant battle whose story will ever be a stimulus to the lovers of heroic deeds. In the closing paragraph of this chapter of his naval history the author pays the following tribute to General Jackson: “The American soldiers deserve great credit for doing so well, but greater credit still belongs to Andrew Jackson, who, with his cool head and quick eye, his stout heart and strong hand, stands out in history as the ablest general the United States produced from the outbreak of the Revolution down to the beginning of the Great Rebellion.” Such unqualified praise is rare in the writings of Mr. Roosevelt. He is an unusually outspoken critic, and often deals savagely with characters that have become the idols of other American writers. But his admiration for the famous Indian-fighter is unbounded. He describes the opening of the battle of New Orleans as follows : “On the 8th of December, 1814, the foremost vessels of the British fleet, among their number the great twodecker Tonnant, carrying the admiral's flag, anchored off the Chandeleur Islands; and as the current of the Mississippi was too strong to be easily breasted, the English leaders determined to bring their men by boats through the bayous and disembark them on the bank of the river ten miles below the wealthy city at whose capture they were aiming. There was but one thing to prevent the success of this plan, and that was the presence in the bayous of five American gunboats, manned by a hundred and eighty men and commanded by Lieutenant-Commander Catesby Jones, a very shrewd fighter. So against him was sent Captain Nicholas Lockyer with forty-five barges and nearly a thousand sailors

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