Theodore Roosevelt in the Badlands by Roger L. Di Silvestro
A Young Politician's Quest for Recovery in the American West

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On February 12, 1884--when Roosevelt was building a career as New York State's most promising young politician--his wife gave birth to their first child, Alice. Two days later, both his wife and his mother died in the same house on Valentine's Day. Grief stricken--and driven by doubts about his career after failed attempts as a reformer fighting political corruption--Roosevelt left Alice in his sister's care and went to live on a Badlands ranch he had bought a year earlier. He spent much of the next three years working alongside his ranch managers and hired hands. He grew to love and respect frontier life and to find in the West both physical health and emotional stamina.His transformation from a young, Harvard-educated New York politician to a working rancher in the mid to late 1880s coincided with the end of the Old West, a turning point in the cattle industry, and major changes in America's attitudes toward wildlife and wild places. Drawing on Roosevelt's own accounts and on diverse archives, Roger Di Silvestro tells the exciting story of how Roosevelt's spirit and political dynamism were forged during roundups, bronco busting, fist fights, grizzly bear hunts, and encounters with horse thieves, hostile Indians, and vigilante justice. In the dramatic life of Theodore Roosevelt, few adventures exceed those that he found in the Badlands.

About Roger L. Di Silvestro

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Roger L. Di Silvestro is a senior editor at National Wildlife magazine and the author of In the Shadow of Wounded Knee and several nature books, including The Endangered Kingdom and Reclaiming the Last Wild Places. He lives in Virginia, near Washington, D.C.
Published March 15, 2011 by Walker Books. 368 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History. Non-fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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Amid the outpouring of Theodore Roosevelt biographies, National Wildlife senior editor Di Silvestro (In the Shadow of Wounded Knee: The Untold Final Story of the Indian Wars, 2007, etc.) provides an examination focused on four years (1884–1888) of the president’s early manhood.

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The Washington Times

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Americans usually mythologize their greatest leaders rather than remember they were merely men. The portrait of Theodore Roosevelt presented by "Theodore Roosevelt in the Badlands" rejects this notion, showing the future president as one who succeeded because he never took his hardships lightly.

Mar 11 2011 | Read Full Review of Theodore Roosevelt in the Bad...

High Country News

With its obsessive inclusion of seemingly every grouse the future president shot, every letter he wrote, and every meeting he chaired during his stay in the West, Theodore Roosevelt in the Badlands ought to be as dry as the territory it covers.

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On the trail of the top 10 most endangered sites found along the Oregon Trail from Independence, Missouri, to Oregon City, Oregon...

Jul 28 2011 | Read Full Review of Theodore Roosevelt in the Bad...

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