Celebrating 24 Years on the Web
Find science on or your birthday

Today in Science History - Quickie Quiz
Who said: “A change in motion is proportional to the motive force impressed and takes place along the straight line in which that force is impressed.”
more quiz questions >>
Thumbnail of Theodore Roosevelt (source)
Theodore Roosevelt
(27 Oct 1858 - 6 Jan 1919)

American president and conservationist (26th, 1901-09) whose term included efforts to conserve national resources, especially the passage of the Newlands Reclamation Act (1902). He was the first president to ride in an automobile (1902), go underwater in a submarine (1905), or fly in an airplane (1910). Immediately after leaving his presidency, he undertook a safari to Africa as hunter and naturalist. In 1913, he travelled on a scientific expedition to the interior of Brazil which produced geographic, geological, and zoological information, and almost two thousand specimens of birds and mammals were collected for the American Museum of Natural Science.

Article header - Drawing of icebergs

Roosevelt—The Friend of Man

Rear Admiral, United States Navy, Retired; President, Aerial League of America;
Chairman, National Aerial Coast Patrol Commission

from Natural History (1919)

A SORROWING nation pays meet tribute to the passing of the greatest American of his time—Theodore Roosevelt.

The one outstanding feature of the complex character of Roosevelt, the man of many parts, was his friendship for man in the abstract—and when this friendship took concrete form for the individual, it became, for its recipient, a tower of strength as fortifying and as impregnable as Gibraltar.

The friendship of Theodore Roosevelt was indeed a most precious possession. Whenever and wherever extended, it had the effect of a superlative superincentive to greater deeds—a step by step advancement, onward and upward, never permitting a retrogression.

I make the following statement without fear of successful contradiction, that no other single personality in this great world of ours today has gathered from such a multitude, from all quarters, kinds, and conditions of life, the utmost in spontaneous affection that has been accorded him during his years of contact with a world’s people.

Thousands upon thousands, in all parts of the world, became his friend through the magnetic personality of his written words, which have reached to the uttermost extremes of enlightened civilization all over the globe.

Inestimable tribute should be paid to Colonel Roosevelt’s memory for the advice and support, given when President of the United States, to the Peary Arctic Club Expedition to the North Polar Regions which resulted in reaching the Pole April 6, 1909.

In 1912, at the annual dinner of the Explorers’ Club, I ventured the prophecy that in a few years the polar regions would be reconnoitered and explored through the air. That prophecy is about to be consummated.

The great war has forced the development of the science of aeronautics and aircraft to that point where no portion of the globe exists today that cannot be visited and explored by either plane or dirigible. It is indeed a fitting tribute to Colonel Roosevelt’s earnest support of aeronautics at all times, that the Bartlett Arctic Expedition, promulgated and organized through the efforts of the Aero Club of America, should be known as “The Roosevelt Memorial Expedition.”

Colonel Roosevelt was a veteran supporter of aeronautics. In 1897, when he was Assistant Secretary of the Navy, he used his influence to secure the necessary appropriation needed by Professor Langley to continue his plans for aviation. Colonel Roosevelt was also responsible for giving the United States Army an aeroplane before any other nation had one. In 1907 he approved the ordering of a biplane and a dirigible.

Scientific results of inestimable value to the United States and to the whole world are directly traceable to Roosevelt’s friendship for man.

Text and image from magazine Natural History (Jan 1919), 19, No. 1, 11, as reprinted in book form Natural History: The Journal of the American Museum: Volume 19 (1919), 11. (source)

Theodore Roosevelt quote “The conservation of natural resources is the fundamental problem” + ducks on water background
background by OZinOH (CC by SA 2.0) (source)
Theodore Roosevelt quote “people without children would face a hopeless future…without trees…as helpless” tree stump background
background by Pilgrim on Wheels (CC by SA 2.0) (source)

See also:

Nature bears long with those who wrong her. She is patient under abuse. But when abuse has gone too far, when the time of reckoning finally comes, she is equally slow to be appeased and to turn away her wrath. (1882) -- Nathaniel Egleston, who was writing then about deforestation, but speaks equally well about the danger of climate change today.
Carl Sagan Thumbnail Carl Sagan: In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion. (1987) ...(more by Sagan)

Albert Einstein: I used to wonder how it comes about that the electron is negative. Negative-positive—these are perfectly symmetric in physics. There is no reason whatever to prefer one to the other. Then why is the electron negative? I thought about this for a long time and at last all I could think was “It won the fight!” ...(more by Einstein)

Richard Feynman: It is the facts that matter, not the proofs. Physics can progress without the proofs, but we can't go on without the facts ... if the facts are right, then the proofs are a matter of playing around with the algebra correctly. ...(more by Feynman)
Quotations by:Albert EinsteinIsaac NewtonLord KelvinCharles DarwinSrinivasa RamanujanCarl SaganFlorence NightingaleThomas EdisonAristotleMarie CurieBenjamin FranklinWinston ChurchillGalileo GalileiSigmund FreudRobert BunsenLouis PasteurTheodore RooseveltAbraham LincolnRonald ReaganLeonardo DaVinciMichio KakuKarl PopperJohann GoetheRobert OppenheimerCharles Kettering  ... (more people)

Quotations about:Atomic  BombBiologyChemistryDeforestationEngineeringAnatomyAstronomyBacteriaBiochemistryBotanyConservationDinosaurEnvironmentFractalGeneticsGeologyHistory of ScienceInventionJupiterKnowledgeLoveMathematicsMeasurementMedicineNatural ResourceOrganic ChemistryPhysicsPhysicianQuantum TheoryResearchScience and ArtTeacherTechnologyUniverseVolcanoVirusWind PowerWomen ScientistsX-RaysYouthZoology  ... (more topics)

Thank you for sharing.
- 100 -
Sophie Germain
Gertrude Elion
Ernest Rutherford
James Chadwick
Marcel Proust
William Harvey
Johann Goethe
John Keynes
Carl Gauss
Paul Feyerabend
- 90 -
Antoine Lavoisier
Lise Meitner
Charles Babbage
Ibn Khaldun
Ralph Emerson
Robert Bunsen
Frederick Banting
Andre Ampere
Winston Churchill
- 80 -
John Locke
Bronislaw Malinowski
Thomas Huxley
Alessandro Volta
Erwin Schrodinger
Wilhelm Roentgen
Louis Pasteur
Bertrand Russell
Jean Lamarck
- 70 -
Samuel Morse
John Wheeler
Nicolaus Copernicus
Robert Fulton
Pierre Laplace
Humphry Davy
Thomas Edison
Lord Kelvin
Theodore Roosevelt
Carolus Linnaeus
- 60 -
Francis Galton
Linus Pauling
Immanuel Kant
Martin Fischer
Robert Boyle
Karl Popper
Paul Dirac
James Watson
William Shakespeare
- 50 -
Stephen Hawking
Niels Bohr
Nikola Tesla
Rachel Carson
Max Planck
Henry Adams
Richard Dawkins
Werner Heisenberg
Alfred Wegener
John Dalton
- 40 -
Pierre Fermat
Edward Wilson
Johannes Kepler
Gustave Eiffel
Giordano Bruno
JJ Thomson
Thomas Kuhn
Leonardo DaVinci
David Hume
- 30 -
Andreas Vesalius
Rudolf Virchow
Richard Feynman
James Hutton
Alexander Fleming
Emile Durkheim
Benjamin Franklin
Robert Oppenheimer
Robert Hooke
Charles Kettering
- 20 -
Carl Sagan
James Maxwell
Marie Curie
Rene Descartes
Francis Crick
Michael Faraday
Srinivasa Ramanujan
Francis Bacon
Galileo Galilei
- 10 -
John Watson
Rosalind Franklin
Michio Kaku
Isaac Asimov
Charles Darwin
Sigmund Freud
Albert Einstein
Florence Nightingale
Isaac Newton

by Ian Ellis
who invites your feedback
Thank you for sharing.
Today in Science History
Sign up for Newsletter
with quiz, quotes and more.