Theodore Roosevelt Collection

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A century ago, for about 16 hours over April 9th and 10th, 1911, former President Theodore Roosevelt visited the University of Idaho.

Roosevelt arrived at 6:30 PM on Sunday, April 9, and took a room at the Hotel Moscow. He woke to rain and clouds the next morning, breakfasted at Ridenbaugh Hall from 7:45 - 8:45 AM "with a large and select party," planted a tree (that still stands today) in front of the Administration Building, and then spoke, just as the rain stopped, to a reported 8000 people from a platform made of sacks of "North Idaho's famous wheat."

In his speech, Roosevelt mentioned his first visit to Idaho came before any of the students in attendance were born. He then went on to praise the University and its motto - 'For the training of Idaho's future citizens to their highest usefullness in private life and public service' - as well as Idaho citizens' "pioneer spirit." After he was finished, the president took a special 10:30 AM train back up to Spokane.

This exhibit accompanies a physical exhibit currently on display on the first floor of the University of Idaho Library. The photographs displayed here are part of the Library's Digital Historical Photograph Collection.

Cover of Argonaut recounting Roosevelt Visit

University of Idaho Library | Digital Collections

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