This period in American History saw America changing from an isolated country to a country very involved in world affairs. Roosevelt provided America with an energetic family and President, Taft continued Roosevelt’s policies, and Wilson got America into World War I, being less successful than his predecessors.
26th President 1901-1909
- Born: October 27, 1858 in New York City, New York
- Died: January 6, 1919 in Oyster Bay, New York
- Home: 20th Street, New York City; Sagamore Hill, Oyster Bay, New York
- Parents: Theodore (1831-1878) and Martha Bulloch (1834-1884) Roosevelt
- First Wife: Alice Hathaway Lee (1861-1884)
- First Marriage: October 27, 1880
- Children by First Wife: Alice Lee (1884-1980)
- Second Wife: Edith Kermit Carow (1861-1948)
- Second Marriage: December 2, 1886
- Children by Second Wife: Theodore Jr. (1887-1944), Kermit (1889-1943), Ethel Carow (1891-1977), Archibald Bulloch (1894-1979), and Quentin (1897-1918)
- Occupations: Writer, Historian, and Politician
- Religion: Dutch Reformed; Episcopalian
- Political Party: Republican (Before and after 1912), Progressive (1912)
- Political Offices Before Presidency: New York State Assemblyman, Member of U.S. Civil Service Commission, President of New York City Police Board, Assistant Secretary of the Navy, Governor of New York, Vice President
- Military Service: Colonel, First U.S. Volunteer Cavalry Regiment (“Rough Riders”)
- Election Results: 1904: 336 Electoral Votes to 140 for Alton B. Parker of New York
- Vice President: None 1901-1905, Charles W. Fairbanks of Indiana 1905-1909
- States Admitted to the Union: Oklahoma
- Both Roosevelt’s mother and his wife died in the same house on the same day
- Roosevelt was the 4th President to remarry
- Roosevelt won the Medal of Honor Posthumously for his bravery in the Spanish-American War
- Roosevelt was also the 4th Vice President to succeed to the Presidency after the death of the incumbent
- Roosevelt won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1906 due to his effort towards peace
- Roosevelt ran for President again in 1912 as the candidate of the Progressive Party
- All of Roosevelt’s sons served in a World War, with Theodore Jr. being awarded the Medal of Honor after World War II
- Quentin Roosevelt’s plane was shot down in France in 1918
Roosevelt was one of the greatest and most energetic Presidents in History.
- Roosevelt bought and built the Panama Canal, being the first U.S. President to leave the U.S.
- Roosevelt won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1906 for arranging a peace treaty between Russia and Japan
- Roosevelt also used the Sherman Anti-Trust Act extensively during his term to break up huge companies like the Vanderbilt Steele Industry (I’m sorry for the misspelling of Steel. I’m used to the other Steele) and the Rockefeller Oil Company
- Roosevelt established many National Parks during his term
Roosevelt was succeeded by his former Secretary of War and a close friend.
William Howard Taft
27th President 1909-1913Fast Facts:
- Born: September 15, 1857 in Cincinnati, Ohio
- Died: March 8, 1930 in Washington, D.C.
- Home: Washington, D.C.
- Parents: Alphonso (1810-1891) and Louise Torrey (1827-1907) Taft
- Wife: Helen (Nellie) Herron (1861-1943)
- Marriage: June 19, 1886
- Children: Robert Alphonso (1889-1953), Helen Herron (1891-1987), and Charles Phelps (1897-1983)
- Occupations: Lawyer, Reporter, Professor
- Religion: Unitarian
- Political Party: Republican
- Political Offices Before Presidency: Governor-General of the Philippines, Secretary of War
- Military Service: None
- Election Results: 1908: 321 Electoral Votes to 162 for William Jennings Bryan of Nebraska
- Vice President: James S. Sherman of New York 1909-1912 (Died in Office)
- States Admitted to the Union: New Mexico and Arizona
- Amendments to the Constitution: Sixteenth
- Taft’s father Alphonso was a former Secretary of War and Attorney General for President Grant
- Taft was the 2nd former Secretary of War to become President
- Taft was the heaviest President, weighing over 300 pounds
- Taft was defeated for Reelection in 1912
- Taft was later appointed Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, the job he had been seeking all his life
Taft tried to follow Theodore’s policies, but drew much opposition from Roosevelt and his supporters.
- Taft signed the Payne-Aldrich Tariff Act, barely lowering prices on a few items. This was condemned by Roosevelt as a failure
- Taft continued Roosevelt’s Antitrust policy
- Although Vetoed by Taft, the Webb-Kenyon Interstate Liquor Shipments Act passed and banned the transportation of liquor into dry states
Taft was succeeded by the Governor of New Jersey and former President of Princeton College.
28th President 1913-1921Fast Facts:
- Born: December 28, 1856 in Staunton, Virginia
- Died: February 3, 1924 in Washington, D.C.
- Home: Woodrow Wilson House, Washington, D.C.
- Parents: Joseph Ruggles (1822-1903) and Janet (Jessie) Woodrow (1836-1888)
- First Wife: Ellen Louise Axson (1860-1914)
- First Marriage: June 24, 1885
- Children by First Wife: Margaret Woodrow (1886-1944), Jessie Woodrow (1887-1932), and Eleanor Randolph (1889-1967)
- Second Wife: Edith Bolling Galt: (1872-1961)
- Second Marriage: December 18, 1915
- Children by Second Wife: None
- Occupations: Lawyer, Author, President of Princeton
- Religion: Presbyterian
- Political Party: Democratic
- Political Offices Before Presidency: Governor of New Jersey
- Military Service: None
- Election Results: 1912: 435 Electoral Votes to 88 for Theodore Roosevelt of New York and 8 for William Howard Taft of Ohio
- Election Results: 1916: 277 Electoral Votes to 254 for Charles Evans Hughes of New York
- Vice President: Thomas R. Marshall of Indiana 1913-1921
- Amendments to the Constitution: Seventeenth, Eighteenth, Nineteenth
- Wilson’s original name was Thomas Woodrow Wilson, but he dropped his first name
- Wilson was the last President born in Virginia
- Wilson supported the South during the Civil War and also supported the Ku Klux Klan and the Segregation of Blacks and Whites
- Wilson was the 5th President to remarry and was criticized for marrying so soon after the death of his first wife
- Wilson was the first President since Ulysses S. Grant and the first Democrat since Andrew Jackson to serve two, full consecutive terms
- Wilson won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1919
- Wilson suffered a stroke in 1919
Wilson was one of the worst Presidents in American History, restricting Black’s rights and reviving the Sedition Act, putting in prison anyone who spoke against him or the government.
- Wilson signed the Underwood Tariff, reducing Tariffs
- Wilson signed the Federal Reserve Act
- Wilson also broke his promise to keep America out of World War I and enacted the Sedition Act
- Wilson tried to convince the Senate to allow the U.S. to join the League of Nations, but Americans were tired of World affairs. Wilson’s 1919 stroke ensured that the U.S. never joined the League
Wilson was succeeded by a Senator and a former Lieutenant Governor of Ohio named Warren G. Harding.