The Correspondence of Theodore Roosevelt and Henry Cabot Lodge

Author: Theodore Roosevelt  | Date: 1925

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New York 1925 Charles Scribner’s Sons

Teddy Roosevelt’s Ride to Glory up San Juan Hill

19 July 1898

Did I tell you that I killed a Spaniard with my own hand? Probably I did. For some time, for your sins, you will hear from me a great many "grouse in the gunroom" anecdotes of this war.

For the first hour of the last battle we had a very uncomfortable time. We were lying in reserve under orders, where the bullets of the enemy reached us, and man after man was killed or wounded. I lay on the bank by Lieut. Haskell, talking with him. Finally he did not answer some questions of mine; I turned to find that he had been shot through the stomach. I gave an order to one of my men, who stood up and saluted and then fell over my knees with a bullet through his brain.

But then came the order to advance, and with it my "crowded hour"; for there followed the day of my active life. I got my men moving forward, and when the 9th regiment of regulars halted too long firing, I took my men dean through it, and their men and younger officers joined me. At the head of the two commands I rode forward (being much helped because I was the only man on horseback) and we carried the first hilt (this was the first entrenchment carried by any of our troops; the first break in the Spanish line; I was the first man in) in gallant shape and then the next and then the third. On the last I was halted and for 24 hours I was in command, on the extreme front of the line, of the fragments of six cavalry regiments, I being the highest officer left there.

1 Marcus Licinius Crassus, member with Caesar and Pompey, of the First Triumvirate of the Roman Republic, accumulated an enormous fortune by traffic in slaves, usury, and buying confiscated estates at nominal prices. Jealous of Pompey’s military renown, Crassus set out for the East to make war on the Parthians, although there had been no provocation. The greedy little tycoon was the richest man in Rome, but a military amateur. His army, weakened by mismanagement and scandalous leadership, was destroyed and he himself captured and put to death (53 B. C.).

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Chicago: Theodore Roosevelt, The Correspondence of Theodore Roosevelt and Henry Cabot Lodge in History in the First Person: Eyewitnesses of Great Events: They Saw It Happen, ed. Louis Leo Snyder and Richard B. Morris (Harrisburg, Pa.: Stackpole Co., 1951), Original Sources, accessed May 23, 2022, http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=SUM6L285D83JA3B.

MLA: Roosevelt, Theodore. The Correspondence of Theodore Roosevelt and Henry Cabot Lodge, in History in the First Person: Eyewitnesses of Great Events: They Saw It Happen, edited by Louis Leo Snyder and Richard B. Morris, Harrisburg, Pa., Stackpole Co., 1951, Original Sources. 23 May. 2022. http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=SUM6L285D83JA3B.

Harvard: Roosevelt, T, The Correspondence of Theodore Roosevelt and Henry Cabot Lodge. cited in 1951, History in the First Person: Eyewitnesses of Great Events: They Saw It Happen, ed. , Stackpole Co., Harrisburg, Pa.. Original Sources, retrieved 23 May 2022, from http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=SUM6L285D83JA3B.