Theodore Roosevelt wrote many letters to his children while they were away, keeping them updated on things that were happening in their absence. In one letter to his son Kermit, who was at Groton school at the time, Roosevelt shared a story about one of the family pets. In this communication, Edith Kermit Carow Roosevelt has decided that Gem, one of the family’s many pets, would be better off with a new owner.
“Mother is going to present Gem to Uncle Will. She told him she did not think he was a good dog for the city; and therefore she gives him to Uncle Will to keep in the city. Uncle Will’s emotion at such self-denying generosity almost overcame him. Gem is really a very nice small bow-wow, but mother found that in this case possession was less attractive than pursuit. When she takes him out walking he carries her along as if she was a Roman chariot. She thinks that Uncle Will or Eda can anchor him. Yesterday she and Ethel held him and got burrs out of his hair. It was a lively time for all three.”
Edith Kermit Roosevelt. From the Library of Congress Prints and Photographs collection.