Theodore Roosevelt Eulogizes a Soldier, Civil Servant, and Friend: “He was of the ruggedly manly and loyal type, the fearless and self-reliant type, which we can least afford to spare from our American life.”

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In the Civil War, Cyrus Leland, Jr. served as a lieutenant in the Tenth Kansas Infantry. He was a member of the Kansas legislature in 1865-1866 and again in 1903-1907. He served many years as county commissioner and as a member of the Republican National Committee. He was appointed by President Benjamin...

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Theodore Roosevelt Eulogizes a Soldier, Civil Servant, and Friend: “He was of the ruggedly manly and loyal type, the fearless and self-reliant type, which we can least afford to spare from our American life.”

In the Civil War, Cyrus Leland, Jr. served as a lieutenant in the Tenth Kansas Infantry. He was a member of the Kansas legislature in 1865-1866 and again in 1903-1907. He served many years as county commissioner and as a member of the Republican National Committee. He was appointed by President Benjamin Harrison to be collector of internal revenue for Kansas, Oklahoma, and the Indian Territory for 1889-1893. Leland was named Missouri Valley pension agent by President William McKinley, a position he held from 1897 until 1901. Leland was a dominant force in Kansas politics and government. Leland was a friend of William Allen White, a journalist who was one of TR’s biggest supporters, and White often wrote Roosevelt about Leland. Leland died August 30, 1917.

Autograph letter signed, on his Sagamore Hill letterhead, New York, September 1, 1917, to Fannie Leland Finley, Leland’s daughter, eulogizing her father just two days after his death. “I mourn with you. I greatly valued your father’s friendship. He was of the ruggedly manly and loyal type, the fearless and self-reliant type, which we can least afford to spare from our American life. I admired and respected him. Again expressing my profound sympathy, I am very faithfully yours, Theodore Roosevelt.”

Thus TR shows some of the qualities he most admired: a person who was rugged, loyal, fearless and self-reliant.

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