Theodore Roosevelt, the twenty-sixth president of the United States, was born 27 October 1858 and passed away on 6 January 1919. However, his legacy remains an important part of U.S. history. In fact, numerous historians have ranked him as one of the top five greatest presidents of all time. He is also pictured on Mount Rushmore with George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Abraham Lincoln.
The son of a wealthy New York City philanthropist, Roosevelt was an outstanding student who graduated Phi Beta Kappa and magna cum laude from Harvard in 1880. He then entered Columbia Law School, but dropped out shortly after in order to run for a term as a New York Assemblyman. He later served as Governor of New York and Vice-President of the United States before assuming the presidency when President William McKinley was shot by Leon Czolgosz on 6 September 1901. Theodore Roosevelt was elected to a second term in 1905 and served until 1909.
During his time in office, Theodore Roosevelt enjoyed vast public support. Voters loved him for his energy, enthusiasm, masculinity, and powerful “cowboy” public persona. This support enabled Theodore Roosevelt to expand the powers and responsibilities of the president and set a precedent for the majority of his successors. Roosevelt’s political accomplishments included winning the Nobel Peace Prize by negotiating an end to the Russo-Japanese War, establishing the Department of Commerce and Labor, reducing the national debt by over 90,000,000 US Dollars (USD), and passing legislation that made it possible for millions of Americans to earn a fair living wage for their labor.
As an avid outdoorsman, Theodore Roosevelt was a powerful supporter of conservation efforts in the U.S. During his tenure in the White House, he provided federal protection for almost 230 million acres of land. This included 51 federal bird reservations, 50 national forests, 21 reclamation projects, 18 national monuments, five national parks, and four national game preserves. His conservation efforts were a smart political move as well, since his base of supporters included a large number of hunters and fishermen.
Although his numerous political accomplishments are impressive in their own right, Roosevelt is also remembered for his contributions in a variety of other fields. He was a respected historian who briefly served as President of the American Historical Association and the author of over 35 books. In addition, he was considered to be an authority on large American mammals after leading major scientific expeditions in Africa and South America.