October is National Book Month, and TR is the writing champ of all the US Presidents, having penned some 35 books, which also include compilations of his hundreds of essays and articles.
The prolific president with a pen made more income from his prodigious writing than from any of his government jobs. One of his books is entitled “A Booklovers Holidays in the Open.” Two of his books about the West were written while in Medora. In October of 1913 alone, he turned out four books including his long-awaited autobiography. He was also an avid reader. Historians estimate that he read 20,000 books in his lifetime.
“I find reading a great comfort. People often say to me that they do not know how I find time for it. I find it a comfort to like all kinds of books. If a man or woman is fond of books, he or she will naturally seek the books that the mind and soul demand. The equation of personal taste is as powerful in reading as in eating.
Books are almost as individual as friends. There is no use in laying down general laws about them.
There are men who love out-of-doors, who yet never open a book – and other men who love books, but to whom the big book of nature is a sealed volume.
Fortunately, I had enough good sense, or obstinacy, or something, to retain a subconscious belief that inasmuch as books were to be read, good books ought to be interesting, and the best books capable in addition of giving one a lift upward in some direction.”
Dakota Datebook: Remembering Theodore Roosevelt is written and performed by Steve Stark. Funding provided by the Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation.