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worshipped him. Some shook hands half a dozen times, and some hardly dared to speak for fear of breaking down. I never expect to see the match of that scene again.”
NOMINATED FOR GOVERNOR OF NEW YORK — A ROUGH RIDER WAY OF CAMPAIGNING - ELECTED GOVERNOR IMPORTANT WORK AT
THE HOMESTEAD AT OYSTER BAY - CHOPPING DOWN A TREE FOR EXERCISE
The war with Spain was at an end, and Uncle Sam had now to turn his attention to the Philippines, where for many months to come military disturbances of a more or less serious nature were to take place.
Theodore Roosevelt might have remained in the army, and had he done so there is no doubt but that he would have swiftly risen to a rank of importance.
But the people of the State of New York willed otherwise.
“He is a great military man,” they said. “ But he was likewise a fine Police Commissioner and a Civil Service Commissioner, fighting continually for what was right and good. Let us make him our next governor.”
The convention that nominated Theodore
Roosevelt for the highest office in the Empire State met at Saratoga, September 27, 1898, just twelve days after the Rough Riders were mustered out. At that time Frank S. Black was governor of the state, having been elected two years before by a large majority. The governor had many friends, and they said he deserved another term.
“ Roosevelt is not a citizen of this state,' said they. “He gave up his residence here when he went to Washington to become Assistant Secretary of the Navy.”
“We don't want him anyway,” said other politicians, who had not forgotten how the Rough Rider had acted when in the Assembly. “If he gets into office, it will be impossible to manage him.”
And they worked night and day to defeat the hero of San Juan Hill.
On the day of the convention, the hall where it was held was jammed with people. The people were also crowded in the street outside, and on every hand were seen Rough Rider badges.
“It was a Roosevelt crowd from top to bottom,” says one who was there. “You
heard his name everywhere — in the hotels, on the streets, no matter where you went. Every once in a while somebody would shout, * Three cheers for Teddy!' and the cheers would be given with a will.”
As soon as the convention had settled down to business, Governor Black was put up for nomination, and then the Hon. Chauncey M. Depew presented the name of Theodore Roosevelt. He spoke of what had been done in Cuba, and added :
“ The Rough Riders endured no hardships nor dangers which were not shared by their Colonel. He helped them dig their ditches; he stood beside them in the deadly dampness of the trenches. No floored tent for him if his comrades must sleep on the ground and under the sky. In that worldfamed charge of the Rough Riders up
the hill of San Juan, their Colonel was a hundred feet in advance."
There was a prolonged cheering when Theodore Roosevelt's name was mentioned, and hundreds waved their handkerchiefs and flags. Other speeches followed, and at last came the voting. Out of the total number cast Theodore Roosevelt received
seven hundred and fifty-three and Governor Black two hundred and eighteen.
“I move we make the nomination of Theodore Roosevelt unanimous !” cried Judge Cady, who had previously presented the name of Governor Black. And amid continued cheering this was done.
Theodore Roosevelt had been nominated on the regular Republican ticket. sition, the Democrats nominated Augustus Van Wyck, also well known, and likewise of as old Dutch stock as Roosevelt himself.
The campaign was a decidedly strenuous one. The Democrats made every effort to win, while on the other hand the Republicans who had wanted Governor Black for another term did not give to Mr. Roosevelt the support promised when his nomination had been made unanimous.
“We shall be defeated,” said more than one friend to Roosevelt. “It seems a shame, but we cannot arouse the party as it should be aroused.”
“I will see what I can do myself,” answered the former leader of the Rough Riders. And he arranged to make a complete tour of the State, taking in almost