September 14, 1901: Theodore Roosevelt is sworn in as president upon the death of William McKinley.
Vice-President Roosevelt was on his way to Buffalo to visit the President (who had been shot at an exposition a week before), when he received a telegram informing him that McKinley had died. When Roosevelt arrived in Buffalo around ten hours later, he was quickly sworn in by a district judge at the Ansley Wilcox House. He also spoke these words to McKinley’s cabinet:
I wish to say that it shall be my aim to continue, absolutely unbroken, the policy of President McKinley for the peace, the prosperity, and the honor of our beloved country.
At age forty-two, Theodore Roosevelt became the nation’s youngest ever president.
Interestingly enough, Roosevelt was only nominated to the vice-presidency (an office he said was “not a steppingstone to anything except oblivion”) because, as governor of New York, he had refused to become a tool of any political machine, which obviously earned him much contempt from bosses like Thomas C. Platt. Platt and his allies, who planned to replace Roosevelt with a more machine-friendly, compliant governor, helped him capture the nomination as a way to “shelve” him by relegating him to a mostly useless position. Their plan turned out well.
I would like everyone to take a minute out of their day to appreciate the fact Teddy Roosevelt is riding a moose.#History #American History