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Thousands of Theodore Roosevelt’s Papers Are Now Online

Before he took on the “bully pulpit” as the 26th president of the United States, Theodore Roosevelt lost his first wife and mother on the same day in 1884. Reflecting on their deaths, he turned to a page in his diary and wrote, “The light has gone out of my life.”

That somber note and thousands of other intimate records from his life are now available in a digital archive compiled by the Library of Congress. According to the library, its collection of Roosevelt’s papers has become the world’s largest, with 276,000 documents and more than 460,000 images from his time as governor of New York, his days as a cavalry officer in the Spanish-American War and his role as president in the early 1900s.

Among the historical files are scrapbooks, speeches, and family records, most notably a letter containing Roosevelt’s first documented use of the proverb “speak softly and carry a big stick;” a campaign speech from his unsuccessful presidential bid in 1912; and a document criticizing Woodrow Wilson’s policy on World War I.

Read entire article at NYT