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    Theodore Roosevelt. In Memory of My Darling Wife Alice Hathaway Roosevelt and of My Beloved Mother Martha Bulloch Roosevelt Who Died in the Same House and on the Same Day on February 14, 1884. [New York: Press of G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1884]. Only edition, privately published by Roosevelt. Octavo (8 x 5.75 inches; 203 x 147 mm). 45 pages. Bound in contemporary soft calfskin with silk covered endpapers. Calf binding is very worn and extremely fragile, with front and back covers separated at spine and detached from text block. Signatures and pages intact and sound, though loose. Overall book is in fragile condition.

    On February 14-Valentine's Day-1884, tragedy struck the Roosevelt household, when Theodore Roosevelt lost both his wife and mother. Their deaths occurred just two days after the birth of his daughter. His wife Alice Roosevelt died of Bright's Disease and his mother Martha Roosevelt passed away from Typhoid Fever. In memory of his wife and mother, Roosevelt published this volume privately through the firm of G. P. Putnam's Sons, which featured moving tributes to both women, the funeral service by the Reverend John Hall, resolutions offered in the New York State Assembly, and newspaper coverage of the funeral. Of his wife, Roosevelt wrote, "We spent three years of happiness such as rarely comes to man or woman. . . . She was beautiful in face and form, and lovelier still in spirit. . . . and when my heart's dearest died, the light went from my life forever." Losing the two most important women in his life in such tragic circumstances, Roosevelt fell into a deep depression and thus decided to move out West and live the life of a cowboy.

    This scarce booklet appears to have had a small print run, as there are no more than a handful known to exist today. There is only one copy listed in WorldCat and only one copy has appeared on the market in recent memory, at Swann's in 2013. See Nora E. Cordingley, "Extreme Rarities in the Published Works of Theodore Roosevelt," The Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America, 39: 1 (1945): 26-28.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2020
    15th-16th Thursday-Friday
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