Before he was President: Theodore Roosevelt

Theodore Roosevelt, 1901-1909 rancher
An early business venture of Theodore Roosevelt's was that of a rancher. He started his own ranch in the Dakota Badlands and called it Elk Horn. He had a few employees, but did the same work that was required of them. Unfortunately, the ranching did not work out for Roosevelt, but during this time he also acquired a tough guy reputation. One story recounts he tracked down the thieves that stole horses from his ranch. He and two of his employees snuck up on the three thieves, caught them, and then, forced them to march for one week to the nearest sheriff. Another story tells of a bar fight he was in when a drunk patron armed with two pistols called Roosevelt "4 Eyes" because of the glasses he wore. However, before the drunk bully could lift up his hands Roosevelt knocked him out cold.


William Howard Taft, 1909-1913 legal clerk
As a child William Taft was active in athletics, especially swimming. His weight would continue to be an issue for him his entire life. After graduating from Yale Taft wanted to go to law school, but he needed money. So he took a job that his brother Charles offered to him as a court reporter. Charles owned the "Times Star" newspaper in Cincinnati. He did such a good job at reporting that another newspaper lured him to their business and paid him $25 a week to continue reporting from the courts. Later on in his career as a lawyer he began dating Nellie Herron. She had visited the White House when she was a little girl and determined that when she grew up she would become a First Lady. She later married Taft who of course went on to become the President.
 

Woodrow Wilson, 1913-1921 teacher, football coach
Many considered book writer and college president Woodrow Wilson to be an intellectual, however, many people didn't realize he was dyslexic and didn't learn the alphabet until he was 9 and couldn't read until he was 11.

More stories: Duncan Hines   George Washington   Thomas Jefferson   Benjamin Franklin   James Garfield   Harry Truman   Henry Ford

 
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