Our Collection

At the Institute’s core is the Gilder Lehrman Collection, one of the great archives in American history. More than 65,000 items cover five hundred years of American history, from Columbus’s 1493 letter describing the New World to soldiers’ letters from World War II and Vietnam. Explore primary sources, visit exhibitions in person or online, or bring your class on a field trip.

Roosevelt, Theodore (1858-1919) to William H. Hunt

Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC05803 Author/Creator: Roosevelt, Theodore (1858-1919) Place Written: Washington, D.C. Type: Typed letter signed Date: 26 September 1901 Pagination: 1

Summary of Content: Supporting Taft, Leonard Wood and William Hunt as Governors of the Philippines, Cuba and Puerto Rico. He believes he is carrying out wishes of McKinley. Written on mourning stationery. Roosevelt requests Hunt’s opinion on several men he is considering for Secretary of Puerto Rico, a position referred to in the letter as the “Secretary of State.” He explains that “in asking you for your opinion I am sure I am doing precisely as the late President intended to do. I wish you would write me with the most absolute freedom as to any appointment that ought or ought not to be made, or as to any other question of policy.” Respecting McKinley’s wishes, Roosevelt followed through with the appointment of Charles Hartzell, a former Colorado state senator who had been offered the post by the late president; he only needed to verify that Hunt did not “know of any objection to it.” Respectful and open-minded, Roosevelt was seeking to promote stability and continuity to the men directly below him, men selected by a strong presidential predecessor.

People: Roosevelt, Theodore, 1858-1919.

Historical Era: Rise of Industrial America, 1877-1900

Keywords/Subjects: Progressive Era, President, Assassinations, Government and Civics, Latin and South America, Spanish American War, Military History, Caribbean, Global History and Civics, Foreign Affairs, Office Seeker, Letter of Introduction or Recommendation, Vice President

Sub Era: Empire Building