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

Page 444

heart. So far as I know, that was the elder Roosevelt’s only appearance in politics, as politicians understand the term. Always a Republican, he had gone to the Cincinnati Convention, which nominated Mr. Hayes, as a representative of the Reform League.
  Church, Mission, and Sunday-school had in him a stanch supporter. He was a constant contributor with counsel and purse to the work of the Young Men’s Christian Association. I like to think that the key to all he was and did is in the answer he gave his pastor when once the latter said that he liked his name Theodore, with its meaning, “a gift of God.” “Why may we not,” replied Mr. Roosevelt, “change it about a bit and make it ‘a gift to God’?” No man could have said it unless he meant just that. And, meaning it, his life must be exactly what it was.
  This is the picture we get of him: a man of untiring energy, of prodigious industry, the most valiant fighter in his day for the right, and the winner of his fights. Mr. Brace said of him that it would be difficult to mention any good thing attempted in New York in twenty years in which he did not have a hand.