Quote of the Day

Theodore Roosevelt was a very effective writer and speaker, and he is eminently quotable. For each of the quotes below, the Theodore Roosevelt Center has provided a brief explanation of the setting or the context in which TR made the statement.

The TR Quote of the Day App, available in the Mac App Store or Android Market for your iOS and Android devices, also includes a TR Quiz to test your knowledge about our 26th president.

Featured Quote for June 27, 2017:

As a people we have played a large part in the world, and we are bent upon making our future even larger than the past.
In his message to Congress at the beginning of the second legislative session of Fifty-seventh Congress, Theodore Roosevelt outlines his priorities for 1902.

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Quotes:

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June 26, 2017
Do not make the mistake of thinking that it is possible ever to call in any outside force to take the place of a man’s own individual initiative, a man’s individual capacity to do work worth doing.
Theodore Roosevelt believed that a man must utilize his own qualities for success in life, which he describes in his pamphlet, The Key to Success in Life.

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June 25, 2017
A man to be a good citizen must first be a good bread-winner, a good husband, a good father--I hope the father of many healthy children;...
In his pamphlet, The Key to Success in Life, Theodore Roosevelt explains the foundation of success, which begins with being a good family man.

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June 24, 2017
The good man who is ineffective is not able to make his goodness of much account to the people as a whole.
Theodore Roosevelt expressed this sentiment in his pamphlet, The Key to Success in Life.

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June 23, 2017
One of the things one must learn, unfortunately, as President or Governor or any like position, is not to jeopardize one’s power for doing the good that is possible by efforts to correct evils over which one has no control…
Theodore Roosevelt wrote these words to Ethelbert Talbot in October 1902 concerning an “unnamed outrages” with which he was unfamiliar and, thus, unwilling to denounce.

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June 22, 2017
I do not know whether I most pity or most despise the foolish and selfish man or woman who does not understand that the only things really worth having in life are those the acquirement of which normally means cost and effort.
Theodore Roosevelt felt strongly that it is a civic duty to marry and raise children, as is evident in this letter dated October 19, 1902 to Bessie Van Vorst at Everybody’s Magazine.

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June 21, 2017
Now I am being much overpraised by everybody, and though I suppose I like it, it makes me feel uncomfortable too.
After the resolution of the Anthracite Coal Strike, Theodore Roosevelt wrote these words in a letter dated October 18, 1902 to Joseph Bucklin Bishop in response to an editorial Bishop wrote.

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June 20, 2017
I need not tell you to do your best to cultivate ability for concentrating your thought on whatever work you are given to do…
Theodore Roosevelt wrote these words in an October 13, 1902 letter to his son Kermit, who was away at Groton School. He also writes that he is pleased that Kermit is doing well.

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June 19, 2017
…they evidently ignored such a trifling detail as the United States Constitution.
In a letter to Marcus Alonzo Hanna written during the Anthracite Coal Strike of 1902, Roosevelt expresses his vexation over the “hopeless attitude” and “rancor” of the operators and his inability to end the disagreement between the operators and the miners.

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June 18, 2017
I am a politician, or at least I try to be one, but in a crisis like this or with a subject as important as that of trust regulation, I should be literally incapable of considering aught besides the good of the country as I see it.
Theodore Roosevelt was concerned about the “coal famine” caused by the anthracite coal strike of 1902. He wrote these words to Oswald Garrison Villard in response to Villard’s editorial.

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June 17, 2017
As I grow older I do not lose my taste for hunting, and I think my fondness for the wilderness increases; but I certainly disbelieve more and more in butchery.
Theodore Roosevelt writes to British conservationist Edward North Buxton about Buxton’s book and states that they share many of the same philosophies about preservation of wildlife. TR wrote this letter in December of 1902.

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