Roosevelt Comments On Dartmouth Game
Crimson-Indian football rivalry has many contemporary critics, but there is only one presidential authority on the subject. Before Theodore Roosevelt took up his "big stick," he took the opportunity to address himself to the Harvard team of 1903 in a letter which was never released. Today, however, the Harvard University Press has published this correspondence and others in Volumes III and IV of the "Letters of Theodore Roosevelt," a collection edited by Eliot Morison, M.I.T. Professor of History.
Roosevelt wrote to his son Theodore. Jr. '09, "Did you ever know anything more disgraceful than Harvard's record in football this year. I think it has been one of the most humiliating things I have ever heard of. Imagine being beaten on her ground by both Amherst and Dartmouth!"
Roosevelt adds a note of encouragement in a later correspondence: "... But it seems to me that there is no good reason for feeling discouraged ... with the Indians, especially, our men won out when it did not seem possible that they could."