Alice Longworth Roosevelt : A Quotation
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"My father always wanted to be the corpse at every funeral, the bride at every wedding and the baby at every christening.
Alice Roosevelt, oldest daughter of future president Theodore Roosevelt, was born on February 12, 1884. Two days after her birth, her mother and paternal grandmother died. As an older teenager when her father became president she was considered difficult to handle. She delighted the press and because of her antics they referred to her as "Princess Alice." She had a habit of interrupting her father in the oval office and when a guest, annoyed by Alice's frequent interruptions, demanded that she be disciplined, President Roosevelt sighed and said, "I can either run the country or I can control Alice. I cannot possibly do both."
The attractive young woman was the source of songs, poems, even a color (Alice Blue). She seemed to be intent on breaking all the social rules of convention. Her father's attempted effort to get her to quit smoking in the White House resulted in her moving to the roof in order to keep puffing away. She bragged about whatever she did that would excite or upset the listener or reader of her adventures.
In 1906, Alice married Nicholas Longworth, then an influential Ohio Congressman in an elaborate White House ceremony. He rose to become Speaker of the House of Representatives. She was staunchly Republican and was thought to work behind the scenes to kill President Woodrow Wilson's League of Nations. During the debates surrounding the League of Nations, Alice was known to invite Senators to her home to meet with other like minded Senators who also opposed the League. She stayed active in her opposition and was in the gallery the day the bill was defeated.
After her husband's death, Alice lived into her 90s as a Washington institution whose home was a salon full of politicians, writers, celebrities, just about anyone who could keep her entertained. Even in her later years she retained her young adult nature for spontaneous and exciting behavior. Her sarcasm and wit found ample targets in Washington gossip and scandal which she loved. Her quote, "If you haven't got anything good to say about anybody come sit next to me" is a good example of what life with Alice was like.
Alice Longworth Roosevelt died in 1980, at the age of 96.
Medium : 1 photographic print
Created/Published : March 24, 1902c
Creator : Frances Benjamin Johnston, photographer, 1864-1952
Frame : 1 1/4" Black with a decorative outside and beaded inside : Size : 11 3/4 x 16
Housed in the Prints and Photographs Division of the Library of Congress
Availability: Usually ships in 1-2 weeks
Product #: FR0126