Remarks at Harvard Union in Boston, Massachusetts

June 28, 1905

Fellow members of Harvard Union:

The only personal request that I made as to the programme of these two days was that I should be given the chance of saying a word to my fellow members of the Harvard Union.

I asked that it should take the form of an overflow meeting, or anything of that kind, because I wanted to speak to you as members of the Harvard Union itself. It seems to me that there is no other institution which so embodies and typifies the true spirit of Harvard as this union—the spirit which stands for what is highest, of brotherhood, of genuine allegiance to the university as such.

I feel that this union is one of the most important elements in shaping a right Harvard life, and that everything that we alumni can do should be done to impress upon the undergraduates the importance of keeping this union up to its highest possible standard of development and use.

As something not, perhaps, of the highest importance, but of importance, I want to congratulate you, as I always do when I come here, upon the delightful physical surroundings of the union. I don't know whether the undergraduates realize what a beautiful building, what a beautiful hall, what beautiful surroundings, these are. A man coming here from the outside can, perhaps, see more clearly than those who are all the time enjoying the surroundings and can realize how great a privilege it is which the generosity of Col. Higginson has allowed to us of Harvard to enjoy.

And now I am going to ask you to join with me in three times three for Col. Higginson.

Theodore Roosevelt, Remarks at Harvard Union in Boston, Massachusetts Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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