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HAVE always counted as one of the highest honors, joys and blessings of my life
the intimate personal friendship of Theodore Roosevelt for the last twenty-four years. As pastor of the Park Avenue Methodist Church in New York City, we were associated with him in his work as Police Commissioner in closing Sunday saloons and were engaged with him in the desperate fight against evil and crime in the great city.
Two motives prompted me to write this book. First, to pay a personal tribute of affection to him. Every line of this book is an appreciation of his great ability and a stream of love flows between the lines from beginning to end. I have traced him from his birth in the city home through the days of his boyhood and early education, to Harvard University; through a series of public offices such as no one man ever filled outlining the important features of his administration in each, and his mighty influence upon individual and national destiny. He destroyed the illegal combination of corporations in their con
spiracy against the government and saved the republic from the ruin which they threatened. He compelled the rich man and the most influential to obey the law as completely as the poorest man, which made him the idol of the common people and also of the honest rich. He so loved his country that he gave himself absolutely to its service, as well as his four boys, whom he loved better than his life. Mention has been made of his titanic achievement in building the Panama Canal. While he was in the White House, he revealed to me some of the deepest secrets of his heart, which I question whether he ever mentioned to any mortal outside of his own family. Some of these are quoted in this work, because they contain such immortal principles that I know he would like to have me tell them to my fellow countrymen. We have referred to him as an author with his thirty-five splendid volumes and have shown his literary style and made quotations from some of his books, and have watched him as a naturalist among the flowers and birds, the insects, and the big game of the forest, and made a record of some of the things he said about them.
The second reason for writing this book was that in some modest way I might hold up this magnificent specimen of manhood as a model and inspiration to my fellowmen. We look into his home and find the ideal husband and father whose happiness and rugged virtues have sweetened and sanctified the name of home and