Roosevelt, Theodore (Encyclopedia of Environmental Issues, Revised Edition)
Born into an aristocratic family in New York City, Theodore Roosevelt was a sickly child. In his youth he collected animals both dead and alive, and he considered becoming a biologist while a student at Harvard. During the 1880’s, after his first wife’s death, Roosevelt sought consolation in the Dakota Badlands as a hunter and a rancher. Hunting was a passion with Roosevelt, but it was combined with a love of nature and considerable scientific knowledge about birds, animals, and plants. In 1887 he was a founding member and the first president of the Boone and Crockett Club, which, while devoted to hunting, also became one of America’s earliest conservation organizations.
If the outdoors was Roosevelt’s avocation, politics was his vocation. He held a number of political positions and became a national figure while leading the famous Rough Riders cavalry regiment during the Spanish-American War of 1898. After serving as governor of New York, he was elected vice president of the United States in 1900; when President William McKinley was assassinated in September, 1901, Roosevelt became the youngest president in U.S. history up to that time.
As president, Roosevelt made momentous strides in the field of conservation. In fact, the word “conservation” in the sense it is understood today came into use only during his presidency. It was a crucial time, for many of the nation’s natural resources that had seemed inexhaustible to...
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Further Reading (Encyclopedia of Environmental Issues, Revised Edition)
Biographical Background (Encyclopedia of Global Resources)
An outdoorsman from his youth, Theodore Roosevelt considered a career as a naturalist while at Harvard University and was later a rancher in the Dakota Badlands. After leaving the White House, he took part in an African safari and then explored Brazil’s River of Doubt, later renamed in his honor.
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Impact on Resource Use (Encyclopedia of Global Resources)
Roosevelt’s tenures as governor of New York and, most notably, as president of the United States gave him the power and the responsibility to implement measures pertaining to his environmental concerns. He assumed the presidency in 1901; during the following eight years, congressional legislation and executive orders reclaimed through irrigation 12 million hectares of western lands, added 61 million hectares to the forest reserves, set aside thousands of hectares for mineral and water power development, established more than fifty wildlife refuges, and created five national parks and eighteen national monuments. In 1908, he hosted a conference on the conservation of natural resources for the nation’s governors.
Sympathetic to John Muir’s preservationist ethos but also to the utilitarian conservationism of Gifford Pinchot, Roosevelt was committed to maintaining the country’s natural resources for all generations, claiming, “We must handle the water, the wood, the grasses, so that we will hand them on to our children and children’s children in better and not worse shape than we got them.”
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Roosevelt, Theodore (West's Encyclopedia of American Law)
Theodore ("Teddy") Roosevelt served as the twenty-sixth president of the United States from 1901 to 1909. A writer, explorer, and soldier, as well as a politician, Roosevelt distinguished himself as president by advocating conservation of natural resources, waging legal battles against
economic monopolies and trusts, and exercising leadership in foreign affairs. An energetic man with a colorful personality, Roosevelt later sought to reclaim the presidency in 1912 as the head of the PROGRESSIVE PARTY.
Roosevelt was born on October 27, 1858, in New York City, a descendant of a wealthy and aristocratic family that first settled in New York in the 1600s. A sickly boy, Roosevelt developed a regimen of diet and exercise that transformed him into a vigorous young man. He graduated from Harvard University in 1880 and was elected to the New York State Assembly in 1881.
Roosevelt resigned in 1884, following the death of his wife, and spent two years at his ranch in the Badlands of the Dakota Territory. During this period he developed both his association with the Wild West world of cowboys and his appreciation of the wilderness. He...
(The entire section is 1378 words.)