by William Henry Harbaugh

ISBN 978-0-945707-13-4      $35.00

542 pages including notes and index

   This is a positive and controversial book - one that restores much of the luster to Theodore Roosevelt's reputation as a man, as President, and as a reformer and Progressive.  Interpreting TR’s career from the point of view of what was politically possible rather than theoretically desirable, Prof. Harbaugh shows how Roosevelt - as a young assemblyman in the New York Legislature, as an incorruptible commissioner of the civil service and later of the police, and finally as governor and President - repeatedly forced the leaders of the Republican Old Guard to compromise their opposition to his social and economic views.
   He tells how TR, following his return from Africa in 1910, fretted for a year and a half over the ineffectiveness of his chosen successor before submitting to his overwhelming urge to be President again.  And he reveals how TR, having lost his bid for the Republican nomination in 1912, found himself in an insoluble ideological and political dilemma.
  This is also a critical book - Roosevelt is portrayed in full dimension - as a high-minded statesman and as an ambitious politician, as a noble patriot and a flaming chauvinist, as a scientific minded intellectual and a glorifier of war, as an advance agent of reform and a sometimes partisan critic of reformers.
  And it is an interesting book...  the author treats not only of TR’s political battles, epochal causes, and remarkably constructive achievements but also of his private life and inner tensions - his love for Alice Lee and Edith Carow, his affection for his father, his early dependence on religion, his relations with Elihu Root, Ray Stannard Baker, Robert La Follette, Oliver Wendell Holmes, and many other notable men, and with his personal tragedies, first as a young husband and then as a mature father.

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