History In Ink®  Historical Autographs


Theodore Roosevelt

Scroll down to see images of the item below the description


“I appreciate more than I can say what you have written on the first page of the book”

Theodore Roosevelt, 1858–1919.  26th President of the United States.  Typed Letter Signed, Theodore Roosevelt, one page, 6½” x 7¾”, on stationery of The Outlook, New York, [New York], July 12, 1911. 

Roosevelt writes to famed social work leader John Adams Kingsbury to thank him for a book, which Adams had inscribed to Roosevelt.  He mentions a luncheon of social workers that he had attended with Kingsbury two months before.  He writes, in full:  “It was very kind of you to send me on a copy of Dr. Smith’s book ‘The Spirit of American Government’, and I look forward with pleasure to reading it.  I appreciate more than I can say what you have written on the first page of the book, and I need not tell you how much I enjoyed the luncheon of the social workers which we had at the National Arts Club in May last.  It was fine to meet you all.  /  With all good wishes,  /  Sincerely yours . . . .”

The book was The Spirit of American Government: A Study of the Constitution: Its Origin, Influence and Relation to Democracy, which was published by J. Allen Smith, a professor of political science at the University of Washington, in 1907, during Roosevelt’s presidency.  Smith wrote that he intended the book “to trace the influence of our constitutional system upon the political conditions which exist in this country to-day.”

Kingsbury (1876–1956) was “one of the foremost social work leaders in the United States from 1911 until 1935.”  Arnold S. Rosenberg, The Rise of John Adams Kingsbury, 63 Pac. N.W.Q. 55, 55  (1972).  He was a supporter of Roosevelt, a member of Roosevelt’s Progressive “Bull Moose” Party.  In 1912, when Roosevelt ran a third-party candidacy for president, Kingsbury helped to convince him to include in the Progressive Party platform “the social and industrial minimums which were later endorsed by both [the Republican and Democratic Parties] and were made into federal law.”  Id.

In 1911, when Roosevelt sent this letter, Kingsbury began a two-year stint as the director of the prestigious New York City Association for Improving the Condition of the Poor, after which he became the city’s Commissioner of Public Charities, which was the most important public welfare position in the country.  Kingsbury later served as a member of the executive committee of the New York State Charities Aid Association and as the secretary and a director of the Milbank Foundation, a health research agency.  After World War I, served as assistant director of general relief for the American Red Cross in France, and he organized American relief efforts in Serbia, touring Serbia on behalf of the Serbian Child Welfare Association of America, of which he was the director. 

Roosevelt has signed this letter with a large 3¾” black ink signature.  The letter has one normal horizontal mailing fold, which runs between the lines of text.  There is an apparent fingerprint stain at the lower left edge of the letter, well removed from the text, and a tiny pinpoint stain in the blank upper right corner.  The letter is in fine condition.



Click here to see more Roosevelt and Presidents items.






home  |  presidents  |  supreme court  |  american history  |  world history  |  contact us


© History In Ink, L.L.C.




 Registered Dealer # RD281