Theodore Roosevelt
Burial Location Visited Vice President Grave #
Oyster Bay, New York August 15, 2004 5th Visited

Theodore Roosevelt rests on Long
Island near Sagamore Hill, his home
for over thirty years. Twenty-six
steps lead up to his grave, symbolic
of his service as the twenty-sixth
president of the United States.

After contacting the caretaker, my family was
granted access to the Roosevelts' burial plot.

                                       *** Interesting Facts ***

 America's youngest president took his first breaths at his family's Manhattan brownstone on October 27, 1858. Roosevelt was a rather frail boy, much unlike the mighty president people remember him as. Plagued with asthma as a child, a six-year-old Theodore Roosevelt was captured in a famous picture of Abraham Lincoln's funeral procession in 1865. Both he and his brother Elliot (future father of First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt) watched many a soldier pass by from their grandfather's New York home. It was during his youth that Theodore Roosevelt became so interested in animals. He was first intrigued by a dead seal he spotted at a local fish market, which he soon acquired and had stuffed.

* The Harvard College graduate took his first step up the political ladder in 1882, when he started serving in the New York State Assembly. But the 1880's was a very dark time for Roosevelt. On February 14, 1884, he lost both his mother and his wife in the same house, which devastated the young politician. He was well aware that his mother was ill with typhoid fever, he did not know that Alice Roosevelt, his youthful wife, was ill with Bright's disease. This was hidden by her pregnancy with the couple's first child, who was named after her mother. Alice Roosevelt died within two days of her daughter's birth. Extremely distraught, Theodore Roosevelt turned his newborn child over to one of his sisters. Shortly after, he went to live on a ranch he built in the Dakota Territory. He stayed there for two years. In 1886, he returned to New York, where he fell in love with Edith Carow, with whom he had already been acquainted with. The two wed in London that year.

* Roosevelt threw his support to Republican Candidate Benjamin Harrison, who was running for president in 1888, and campaigned for him out in the Midwest. In return, Roosevelt was appointed to the U.S. Civil Service Commission. Serving until 1895, he fought fraud and redefined civil service laws in an attempt to purify the government so that people would be appointed to government positions for a reason, not because of their political allegiances. He later served in New York City as a police commissioner, where he also took on corruption. Roosevelt exposed policemen who were taking bribes, and he only appointed men to the force if they were fit both mentally and physically. Before, men could become officers just because of their connections or which political party they supported. The press coverage Roosevelt received was unbelievable, and there was no one in New York City who did not now his name.

* Theodore Roosevelt became the assistant secretary of the Navy in 1897, and was instrumental in preparing for the Spanish-American War. He resigned in 1898 to see some action, and became even more famous for being the leader of the "Rough Riders", the First United States Volunteer Cavalry. The regiment fought in several battles, most notably the Battle of San Juan Hill. After his departure from the military, Roosevelt was elected as the governor of the state of New York, and then vice president in 1900. He was inaugurated on March 4, 1901, and assumed the presidency after the assassination of William McKinley that September.

* After nearly two full terms in office, Roosevelt handed the reigns over to friend and fellow Republican William Howard Taft in 1909. Following the end of his administration, he went on a well-documented safari in Africa, where he killed lots of animals, most of which were stuffed and displayed at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington. Roosevelt returned from his trip unsatisfied with what was going on in American politics, and by 1912, he once again entered the race for the presidency. While on the campaign trail, the former president stopped in Milwaukee, where a would-be assassin shot Roosevelt in the chest. That did not deter the robust candidate, and he went on to say his speech. The bullet's momentum had been slowed by TR's folded copy of his speech and his eyeglass case. Though too dangerous to remove, the bullet did not kill him. Roosevelt lived long enough to see Woodrow Wilson win the White House, the start of World War I, and the death of Quentin, his youngest son, who was gunned down behind enemy lines in Germany. Never the same again, the man who was perhaps America's most colorful president died in his sleep at his beloved home, Sagamore Hill, on January 6, 1919. As aptly put by Vice President Thomas Marshall, "Death had to take Roosevelt sleeping, for if he had been awake, there would have been a fight." He was laid to rest two days later.

Second Lady: Edith Kermit Carow Roosevelt

      - Spouse: Alice Hathaway Lee Roosevelt (m. 1880-1884)

                     Edith Kermit Carow Roosevelt (m. 1886-1919)

Political Party:
Republican Party

                       Progressive Party

Served Under:
William McKinley (1901)

Last Words:
 "Please put out that light, James."

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