Home  »  Theodore Roosevelt, the Citizen  »  Page 114

Jacob A. Riis (1849–1914). Theodore Roosevelt, the Citizen. 1904.

Page 114

papers brought against him. It published one of his letters in facsimile and asked scornfully if this man could pass an examination in penmanship for the desk of a third-rate clerk in his own office; yet he sat in judgment on the handwriting of aspirants. Now, I have always thought Mr. Roosevelt’s handwriting fine. It is n’t ornate. Indeed, it might be called very plain, extra plain, if you like. But his character is all over it: a child could read it. There can never be any doubt as to what he means, and that, it seems to me, is what you want of a man’s writing. Here is a line of it now which I quoted before, still lying on my table. Squeezed in between lines of typewriting it is not a fair sample, but take it as it is: I haven’t heard a word about it from my superior officers, who have the complete say-so.
  However, Roosevelt made no bones about it. He owned up that he could n’t pass for a clerk-ship, which was well, he said, for he would have made but a poor clerk, while he thought he