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Theodore Roosevelt

The Nobel Peace Prize 1906

President, USA. International Peace Arbitrator, various treaties. Vigorous, businesslike. "We abhor bully, oppressor, in private or public life". Conservationist, protected 230,000,000 acres of public land.

After camping in Yosemite National Park, "It was like lying in a great solemn cathedral, far vaster and more beautiful than any built by man."

Nobel Prize Cash and Philanthropy

By Robert Dean Kidd, Jr., J.D., B.A.
Attorney, Philosopher and Editor, Albuquerque, NM

In 1906 Theodore Roosevelt, the 26th U.S. President, became the first American to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Roosevelt was well known for pushing his progressive domestic policies which were primarily aimed at curbing the power of large corporations and providing government oversight of industries to ensure worker and consumer safety. He was also extremely active in foreign affairs part of which involved his offer in 1905 to mediate a treaty to end the Russo-Japanese war.

The parties to the treaty met in New Hampshire and agreed to resolution of the final area of conflict, Sakhalin. Russia took the northern half of the area and Japan the south. Additionally, Japan dropped its demand for indemnity. It was for these efforts that Roosevelt was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

While Roosevelt had originally intended to keep the prize money for his family, his wife convinced him that as a statesman he had a larger obligation to share the money for greater endeavors. Initially, Roosevelt donated the prize money to Congress for the creation of an Industrial Peace Committee which would be dedicated to resolving conflicts between different classes within society. Congress, however, never formed the committee so during World War I Roosevelt petitioned Congress for the return of the funds so that he could donate them for war relief efforts.

Roosevelt fundamentally transformed the office of the President and is still remembered for his strong, although sometimes controversial, policies with regards to the improvement of people in all classes. His desire to use the Nobel Prize money for efforts larger than himself demonstrate his dedication to the improvement of the individual and his commitment to the strengthening of a nation.

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Roosevelt
Photo: Library of Congress

Name: Theodore Roosevelt
Birth: 27 October 1858, New York, NY, USA
Death: 6 January 1919, Oyster Bay, NY, USA
Residence at the time of the award: USA
Role: Collaborator of various peace treaties, President of United States of America
Field: Negotiation
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