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    Theodore Roosevelt Typed Letter Signed as President. One page with integral blank, on White House letterhead, approximately 7" x 8.75", Washington DC, February 20, 1908. Headed "Personal." Roosevelt writes to A.H. Whitfield, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Mississippi. In full: "My dear Judge: Yes, I had already conferred with Mr. Dickinson about that. I have asked the Attorney General to make that request of Judge Miles at once. I do not believe the bill can be passed if the Senators from Mississippi do not favor it, owing to an attitude of mind in the Senate that I regard as unpardonable. If it is not passed, and Mr. Taft is elected, my dear Judge, I shall gladly tell him that had the bill passed during my presidency it was my intention to have appointed you. It was delightful having you here. Sincerely yours, Theodore Roosevelt."

    Roosevelt declined running for a third term in 1908. He chose his Secretary of War William Taft as his successor. Roosevelt's public support of Taft assured him the Republican nomination and eventual 1908 election. Roosevelt believed Taft would continue his agenda of reform; and although Taft was a progressive, he was not cut of the same cloth as Roosevelt. What began as an ideal transition of administrations ended in a political rivalry that nearly destroyed the Republican Party in the Election of 1912.

    Roosevelt helped pass several important pieces of legislation in early 1908, most of which had to do with the protection and conservation of the nation's natural resources. It is possible that this letter concerns Attorney General Charles Bonaparte's idea to create an official Department of Justice investigative bureau. With modest beginnings, on July 26, 1908, what would eventually become the Federal Bureau of Investigation was born. Letter is moderately toned with light creases. Typewritten text and signature are slightly faded.

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    October, 2010
    14th-15th Thursday-Friday
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