President Theodore Roosevelt arrives in Krisitania
In 1906 President Theodore Roosevelt was awarded the Nobel Peace prize for his work mediating the Russo-Japanese dispute. This was known as the Treaty of Portsmouth. The award came with a medal and prize money. At the time President Roosevelt was not able to travel in person to pick up the award but he did send a letter of thanks and appreciation which was read by the United States ambassador. It was not until 5 May 1910 that Roosevelt came to Norway to give a lecture and accept the award. He gave heartfelt thanks saying that he would always treasure the medal and pass it down to his children and grandchildren. As President he did not think it right to accept the prize money for himself indicating that he would prefer to establish a charity organization to promote peace in industry. When this failed to come about and he was no longer in office, Roosevelt asked Congress in 1918 to return the money to him so that he could donate it to already established charities such as the Red Cross, Salvation Army, YMCA and others. In 1918 the prize money was worth approximately $45,000, today it would be about ten times that amount. A very generous gift indeed.
On 19 May 1910 Hans Østerholt, a Norwegian journalist and editor of Hvespen, sent at least two postcards commemorating the event to his brother, I.C. Lee, who was living in Seattle, Washington. He penned a short note on the back of one of the cards which says something like “Together with Rollef I sit down on the sidelines and write this note. It is terrifying drudgery but must be done. Now the driver is in the way. Isn’t it funny how three brothers communicate? Here are hats off and a salute amid the bustle. With brotherly greetings, H.Østerholt.”
Perhaps there are no people alive today who were living at the time this event took place but these pictures provide a glimpse into history as it was happening.
For more information about the life of Theodore "Teddy" Roosevelt please see:
The postcards were published by Eneberettiget in 1910 and have a divided back. One card is used the other must have been included with a letter in an envelope as it does not have a message written nor a stamp/cancellation mark.