“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” Theodore Roosevelt
There’s a reason Teddy Roosevelt’s face is on Mt. Rushmore. He wasn’t just a man with a big reputation. He was a man who lived life to the fullest with a joy and intensity the American presidency had never seen before. One British writer said after visiting the White House that “Roosevelt is not an American, you know. He is America.” He had the reputation for having a huge personality and being a ball of energy.
Though soft, cuddly teddy bears were named after him, one historian described him as being more similar to the Tasmanian Devil because he just could not sit still. There was too much life to live and he wanted too see and do it all. One could argue that he nearly accomplished just that.
Teddy Roosevelt, or TR as he liked to be called, was iconic. In our lineup of presidents of the week, TR accomplished more than several presidents combined. It seems hardly possible to capture his life in anything less than a full novel, so here are some of the highlights that you may not already know.