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44   My Brother Theodore Roosevelt

free summer activities in wood and field, to the picture-galleries and museums, or even to the wonderful Swiss mountains where they had to be so carefully guarded.

In the letters written faithfully to our beloved aunt, the note of homesickness is always apparent.

Our principal delight was in what we used to call "exploring" when we first arrived at a hotel, and in the occasional intercourse with children of our own age, or, as in Teedie's case, with some expert along the line of his own interests, but the writing and receiving of home letters stand out more strongly than almost any other memory of this time, and amongst those most treasured by Teedie and myself were the little missives written by our most intimate friend, Edith Kermit Carow, a little girl who was to have, in later days, the most potent influence of all over the life of Theodore Roosevelt. How little she thought when she wrote to her friend "Cone" from Redbank, November 19, 1869, "I was much pleased at receiving your kind letter telling me all about Teedie's birthday," that one day that very Teedie would be President Theodore Roosevelt and Edith Kermit Carow the mistress of the White House.

The old friendship of our parents for Mr. and Mrs. Carow, who lived with Mr. Carow's older sister, Mrs. Robert Kermit, in a large house backing up against the 14th Street mansion of Mr. and Mrs. Cornelius Van Schaack Roosevelt, was the natural factor in the relationship of the younger generation, and little Edith Carow and little Corinne Roosevelt were pledged friends from the time of their birth.

The "Teedie" of those days expressed always a homesick feeling when "Edie's" letters came. They seemed to fill him with a strong longing for his native land !

In the little note written on yellow, very minute writingpaper, headed by a satisfied-looking cat, "Edie" expresses the wish that "Teedie" could have been with her on a late picnic, and "Teedie," I am equally sure, wished for her presence at his eleventh-birthday festivities, which were described by my sister

Green Fields and Foreign Faring   45

Anna in a letter to our aunt, Mrs. James King Gracie. I quote a few lines from that letter, for again its contents show the beautiful devotion of my father and mother and sister to the delicate little boy-the devotion which always put their own wishes or arrangements aside when the terrible attacks of asthma came, for those attacks seemed to make them feel that no plan was too definite or important to change at once should "Teedie's" health require it. My sister writes, the letter being dated from Brussels, October 30, 1869:

"Last Thursday was dear little Teedie's birthday; he was eleven years old. We all determined to lay ourselves out on that occasion, for we all feared that he would be homesick,-for he is a great little home-boy. It passed off very nicely indeed. We had to leave Berlin suddenly the night before, for 'Teedie' was not very well; so we left Berlin on Wednesday night at eight o'clock and arrived at Cologne on Thursday morning about nine. You can imagine it was a very long trip for the three little children, although they really bore it better than we three older ones. [She one of the older ones at fourteen and a half!] It was a bitterly cold night and snowed almost all the time. Think of a snow storm on the night of the 27th of October ! Teedie was delighted at having had a snow storm on his birthday morning, for he had never had that before. When we reached Cologne we went to the same hotel, and had the same nice rooms which we had had on our former stay there, and that of course made us feel very much more at home. Teedie ordered the breakfast, and they all had `real tea' as a very great treat, and then Teedie ordered the dinner, at which we were all requested to appear in full dress; so Mamma came in her beautiful white silk dinner dress, and Papa in dress coat and light kid gloves. I was very cold, so only wore silk. After Teedie's dinner Papa brought in all his presents. They, Mamma and Papa, gave each of the three, writing desks marked with their names and filled with all the conveniences. Then Teedie received a number of smaller presents as well."


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