President Theodore Roosevelt made small strides in U.S. race relations, but he was not considered a leader of the civil rights movement. He spoke out publicly against race-based discrimination on a number of occasions. He also appointed several African Americans to federal offices, but they were lower level positions.Continue Reading
Opposed to school segregation, Roosevelt ordered an end to it in New York while serving as governor of the state. He defied anti-Semites as president by appointing a Jewish man to his cabinet.
Roosevelt invited Booker T. Washington, a prominent African-American leader in his time, to dinner at the White House in 1901. Washington shared his views on racism and politics during the meeting. However, the public reaction to the summit was critical, which discouraged Roosevelt from sending a second invitation. In fact, shortly after the public criticized him inviting Washington to the White House, Roosevelt began speaking out less often in support of civil rights.
Even so, in 1905, Roosevelt threatened to sue the city of San Francisco for denying admission of 93 Japanese students to public schools in which primarily white students were enrolled. He worked with school officials to reach a compromise in which the school board allowed the Japanese students to attend classes with white students and asked Japan to cease issuing passports to unskilled laborers.Learn more about US History
Theodore Roosevelt greatly increased the power of the presidency, largely by taking the position that the president could exercise any right not specifically denied him by the Constitution. Previously, Congress had been the most powerful branch of the government, but Roosevelt's presidency helped establish an influential and authoritative executive branch.Full Answer >
Theodore Roosevelt belonged first to the Republican Party and then to the Progressive Party, which was known widely as the Bull Moose Party. He switched parties because he was more reform-minded than the Republicans were at that time.Full Answer >
Theodore Roosevelt won the Nobel Peace Prize for his involvement in various peace treaties. Roosevelt was instrumental in peace negotiations during the Russo-Japanese War, namely in his work on the Treaty of Portsmouth. His actions also led to the peaceful resolution of a dispute between the United States of America and Mexico.Full Answer >
During his presidency, many members of Congress felt that Theodore Roosevelt overstepped the executive powers afforded to him as President of the United States. Roosevelt felt that large industry required an involved government, and used this rationale to exert influence over negotiations between labor unions and companies.Full Answer >