Source: The Life and Letters of John Hay
Source type: book
Document type: letter
Document title: “Hay to Roosevelt”
Author(s): Hay, John [letter]; Thayer, William Roscoe [book]
Volume number: 2
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Company
Place of publication: Boston, Massachusetts
Year of publication: 1916
|Hay, John. “Hay to Roosevelt.” The Life and Letters of John Hay. By William Roscoe Thayer. Vol. 2. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1916: pp. 344-45.|
|full text of letter; excerpt of book|
|John Hay (correspondence); Theodore Roosevelt (assumption of presidency).|
|John Hay; Theodore Roosevelt.|
|The letter below was written on 15 September 1901.|
Hay to Roosevelt
MY DEAR ROOSEVELT,—
If the Presidency had come to you in any other way, no one would have congratulated you with better heart than I. My sincere affection and esteem for you, my old-time love for your father—would he could have lived to see you where you are!—would have been deeply gratified.
And even from the depths of the sorrow where I sit, with my grief for the President mingled and confused with that for my boy, so that I scarcely know, from hour to hour, the true source of my tears—I do still congratulate you, not only on the opening of an official career which I know will be glorious, but upon the vast opportunity for useful work which lies before you. With your youth, your ability, your health and strength, the courage God has given you to do right, there are no bounds to the good you can accomplish for your country and the name you will leave in its annals.
My official life is at an end—my natural life will not be long extended; and so, in the dawn of what  I am sure will be a great and splendid future, I venture to give you the heartfelt benediction of the past.
God bless you.