Robert “Fighting Bob” La Follette (1855-1925), a progressive reformer from Wisconsin, resisted the corrupt influence of railroads, utilities, and large corporations. Like other early twentieth century activists, he challenged fellow citizens to take control of the machinery of government.
Marcus Alonzo Hanna (1837-1904), a wealthy Ohio industrialist, political organizer, and United States Senator, epitomized the close relationship that existed between the titans of industry and politicians during America's Gilded Age.
Reed Smoot was a Republican Senator from Utah for whom Theodore Roosevelt's support was necessary to ensure his being seated in the Senate.
Joseph Gurney Cannon was the influential Republican Speaker of the House of Representatives during most of Theodore Roosevelt’s presidency.
Nelson Wilmarth Aldrich was the powerful senior Republican Senator from Rhode Island during Theodore Roosevelt’s presidency.
Frances Kellor's national status as an immigration expert drew President Roosevelt’s attention and she became part of his “Female Brain Trust” with Jane Addams and Florence Kelley.
The "Dear Maria" controversy concerned the separation of church and state in regards to President Roosevelt's endorsement of a Catholic archbishop for elevation to the position of cardinal.