PRESIDENT THEODORE ROOSEVELT AND MRS. ROOSEVELT (SOUVENIR OF VISIT- 1902)

This cabinet card features President Theodore Roosevelt (1858-1919) and first lady, Edith Roosevelt (1861-1948). Roosevelt was the 26th President of the United States and served between 1901 and 1909. He was truly a remarkable man. Among the titles that could describe him are; athlete, naturalist, explorer, hunter, author, cowboy, soldier, father, cowboy, and politician. He had a wide range of interests and achievements. As president, Roosevelt was a leader of the progressive movement, was a successful “trust-buster”, created an active government conservation effort, helped develop the Panama Canal, and negotiated a settlement to the Russo-Japanese War (won the Nobel Peace Prize). He was well known for his international relations policy characterized by the slogan, “speak softly and carry a big stick”. Roosevelt’s political career included holding positions as a New York State Assemblyman, member of the Civil Service Commission, New York City Police Commissioner, Assistant Secretary of the Navy, Governor of New York, and Vice President under William Mckinley. Upon Mckinley’s assassination, Roosevelt became the President of the United States. Roosevelt was a busy and productive man. Despite all the aforementioned activities, he also had a military career. He led a regiment of soldiers during the Spanish American War. He helped form a unit called “The Rough Riders”. The Rough Riders included an interesting combination of soldiers, including many cowboys, and many ivy leaguers. The unit was very successful and fought valiantly during the war. Pictured alongside Roosevelt on this cabinet card is his first lady, Edith Roosevelt. She was Roosevelt’s second wife; his first wife had died. Interestingly, Edith and Teddy were childhood friends and playmates. In fact they were next door neighbors while growing up in New York City. She was best friends with Roosevelt’s sister and even attended Roosevelt’s first wedding. Edith Kermit Carow and Theodore Roosevelt had five children. The caption on this cabinet card raises some interesting questions. This cabinet card was given out, or sold, as a souvenir. What event or place used the photograph as a memento? What is the significance of the year 1902? Perhaps a visitor to this site will have some knowledge they can share to address these questions.

FASHIONABLE WOMAN IN WINTER OUTERWEAR IN POUGHKEEPSIE, NEW YORK

This cabinet card is a portrait of a pretty young woman dressed in winter clothing. Her heavy coat is trimmed with fur and she appears to be wearing a fur hat and leather gloves. The woman can access additional warmth from her fur muff. She is clearly ready for a cold New York winter. The photographic studio that produced this image is Vail Brothers, of Poughkeepsie, New York. Vassar College library’s archive possesses two photographic albums from the photographers. The collection includes photographs of Vassar and Poughkeepsie. Vail Brothers began their studio in 1868 and it was still in existence at least until 1895. The studio is also known for their photographs of a number of the members of the Roosevelt family, including Franklin Roosevelt during his childhood years.