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The Rough Riders: Teddy Roosevelt's Firsthand Account of the Cuban Campaign During the Spanish-American War

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Colonel Theodore Roosevelt's account of the "Rough Riders," the volunteer cavalry unit that fought in Cuba during the Spanish-American War. With ten pages of photos. Colonel Theodore Roosevelt's account of the "Rough Riders," the volunteer cavalry unit that fought in Cuba during the Spanish-American War. With ten pages of photos.


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Colonel Theodore Roosevelt's account of the "Rough Riders," the volunteer cavalry unit that fought in Cuba during the Spanish-American War. With ten pages of photos. Colonel Theodore Roosevelt's account of the "Rough Riders," the volunteer cavalry unit that fought in Cuba during the Spanish-American War. With ten pages of photos.

30 review for The Rough Riders: Teddy Roosevelt's Firsthand Account of the Cuban Campaign During the Spanish-American War

  1. 5 out of 5

    Darwin8u

    "We knew not whither we were bound, nor what we were to do; but we believed that the nearing future held for us many chances of death and hardship, of honor and renown." - Theodore Roosevelt, The Rough Riders I've been curious to read this memoir/history by TR. Like everything he did, it was written with energy and machismo. He reminds me a lot of my late father-in-law, who was probably born a century too late. My father-in-law was a calvary Colonel who commanded both tanks and helicopters. It is "We knew not whither we were bound, nor what we were to do; but we believed that the nearing future held for us many chances of death and hardship, of honor and renown." - Theodore Roosevelt, The Rough Riders I've been curious to read this memoir/history by TR. Like everything he did, it was written with energy and machismo. He reminds me a lot of my late father-in-law, who was probably born a century too late. My father-in-law was a calvary Colonel who commanded both tanks and helicopters. It is something to see a helicopter colonel stomping around with spurs on and not think a little of Theodore Roosevelt. The Rough Riders were a band of confederate volunteers made up primarily of cowboys, lawmen, miners, and native americans from the Western territories (New Mexico, Arizona, Oklahoma, and Texas) and sprinkled with athletes and adventurers from Harvard, Yale and Princeton. Through persistence and energy, Roosevelt and his 1st United States Volunteer Cavalry managed to work their way to the point of the spear during the Spanish–American War in Cuba and engaged in the Battle of Las Guasimas, the Battle of San Juan Hill, and the seige of Siege of Santiago. This episode was one of those early events that helped propel the energetic TR forward in his march to the presidency.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Michael O'Brien

    An excellent, very readable book by Roosevelt. Enjoyed it thoroughly. This book is not some self-serving account by Colonel Roosevelt to advance himself. No, it is the story of one of the most colorful units in American military history, their members' backgrounds, their valor, and their adaptibility to very tough circumstances. I've always admired the Rough Riders, and after reading this book, my esteem increased even more. One thing that I did not realize, until reading this, is how completely An excellent, very readable book by Roosevelt. Enjoyed it thoroughly. This book is not some self-serving account by Colonel Roosevelt to advance himself. No, it is the story of one of the most colorful units in American military history, their members' backgrounds, their valor, and their adaptibility to very tough circumstances. I've always admired the Rough Riders, and after reading this book, my esteem increased even more. One thing that I did not realize, until reading this, is how completely unprepared the U.S. Army was for war. Clearly, the Army's Quartermaster and Transportation systems were woefully unsuited even to projecting ground military power even close to America's shores, and, for that inadequacy, the Rough Riders and other soldiers paid the price. Their resourcefulness and stamina overcame these handicaps to defeat the Spaniards; however, if Cuba had, instead, been defended by one of the first rate militaries of the day such as the German or British Empires, one wonders if the outcome of the Cuban Campaign may have turned out quite differently ---- not because their soldiers were better than America's, but because their General Staffs enjoyed considerably more experience in battle planning, logistics, and transportation.

  3. 4 out of 5

    David Hinckley

    I enjoyed this short book quite a bit. There were three things that really struck me. First, Roosevelt's approach to war was extremely interesting. It was very much an adventure to him. Although there was absolutely no need for this war, he considered it a just cause, and he openly promoted it. The war was an opportunity for men to prove their mettle, and he was proud when his men did. So it was very much an adventure, something to be celebrated in his mind. But at the same time, he didn't skimp I enjoyed this short book quite a bit. There were three things that really struck me. First, Roosevelt's approach to war was extremely interesting. It was very much an adventure to him. Although there was absolutely no need for this war, he considered it a just cause, and he openly promoted it. The war was an opportunity for men to prove their mettle, and he was proud when his men did. So it was very much an adventure, something to be celebrated in his mind. But at the same time, he didn't skimp on the tragedy of war. He spent a considerable amount of time on the stories of men killed in battle - not in a bloodthirsty way, but sad, describing the human tragedy. I found myself identifying with his perspective in some ways, but unable to really embrace it. It was an eye-opener, though to a perspective of war that isn't really aired in today's various debates. Second, it's easy to see from his writing why Roosevelt was so popular. He was so interested in other people and their stories, he spent a good deal of the book talking about all of the people around him, their backgrounds, and the ways that they impressed him. I've read a little before about how friendly he was and about how people were drawn to him, and it's on display in his writing. Third, I was very impressed with the writing. The whole thing is essentially built around one battle that ends halfway through the book, and the fact that the rest of the book keeps the reader's interest, I think, is a testament to good story-telling. All-in-all, a very good book both for the history of the war and for the insight into Roosevelt. An easy, worthwhile read.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Cari

    Fact: Theodore Roosevelt was not a bad ass, he was The Bad Ass. I suspect he was also a little bit crazy in the best possible way, as evidenced by how gleefully he describes the adventure of going to war with his group of rough-around-the-edges volunteers (also bad asses), because for him this really was just another adventure. (Further suspicion: his men--and everyone else--were probably less than thrilled, because most people don't think "war" = "yay! adventure!") To each their own. I thorough Fact: Theodore Roosevelt was not a bad ass, he was The Bad Ass. I suspect he was also a little bit crazy in the best possible way, as evidenced by how gleefully he describes the adventure of going to war with his group of rough-around-the-edges volunteers (also bad asses), because for him this really was just another adventure. (Further suspicion: his men--and everyone else--were probably less than thrilled, because most people don't think "war" = "yay! adventure!") To each their own. I thoroughly enjoyed The Rough Riders, what could've been dry was instead entertaining, presented in a conversational tone, and thoroughly engaging. I'm particularly fond of the bits of sly snark hidden in the text, very subtle, very nice. Every so often there are passages where the patronizing tone, despite Roosevelt's enthusiastic insistence that "everyone is as awesome as everyone else!", is a bit uncomfortable, a product more of the time period than the man himself. Overall this is a fabulous read, a firsthand account of a time period and war that's rarely (if ever) mentioned in schoolrooms. I'm a raging dork, but I wish this has been required reading in my late high school years. It's one of those books I can't believe it took me so long to discover and read.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Joseph Sciuto

    What can I say about Mr Theodore Roosevelt that has not already been said, recorded, analyzed, and written about? This extraordinary individual died at the relatively young age of sixty, and yet it is no exaggeration to say that within those sixty years he lived three or four lives. He was known to read two books a day, he wrote numerous books (a few best sellers), adventured down the dangerous Amazon into territories previously unknown to much of the world, was credited with writing between one What can I say about Mr Theodore Roosevelt that has not already been said, recorded, analyzed, and written about? This extraordinary individual died at the relatively young age of sixty, and yet it is no exaggeration to say that within those sixty years he lived three or four lives. He was known to read two books a day, he wrote numerous books (a few best sellers), adventured down the dangerous Amazon into territories previously unknown to much of the world, was credited with writing between one-hundred and fifty thousand letters to two-hundred thousand letters and that is just the beginning of his story. Asked recently who she would pick if she could pick a vice presidential candidate dead or alive, Senator Elizabeth Warner, without hesitation, said Teddy Roosevelt. Asked who he thought were the three most important American presidents, FDR, a democrat, listed his distant cousin Teddy as one of the three. Theodore Roosevelt's "The Rough Riders" is a detailed, marvelously written, autobiography by the future President of the United States. It is a historical, honest, depiction of what Liet. Colonel Roosevelt and his Volunteer Cavalry, nicknamed The Rough Riders, experienced during the Spanish-American War. It is not a political memorandum, but the eyewitness account of war and its destruction, its gallantry, and its lasting effect on the soldiers who survived through the eyes of one of its heroes. It is not an easy book to read, but boy was it was worth the trouble. Where have you gone TR... Never has there been a time where we have needed you more.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Sharon Barrow Wilfong

    Teddy Roosevelt is one of my favorite presidents. In this first hand account he describes how her recruited his voluntary Rough Rider troop to fight the Spanish occupation in Cuba. It is a grand record of times past and people past and I'm glad that we have Roosevelt's personal account of these people as well as their values and objectives. It helped me understand how the United States took the direction it did in becoming a world power. Teddy Roosevelt is one of my favorite presidents. In this first hand account he describes how her recruited his voluntary Rough Rider troop to fight the Spanish occupation in Cuba. It is a grand record of times past and people past and I'm glad that we have Roosevelt's personal account of these people as well as their values and objectives. It helped me understand how the United States took the direction it did in becoming a world power.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Tom

    Written from a loose frame of notes and from memory- a photographic memory at that- this book, written by Theodore Roosevelt, is phenomenal. The amount of data and detail are amazing. Expecting our 26th president to be a bit self serving, in a military campaign in Cuba that he was a major participant in, this book has none of that. Teddy gives credit where credit is due, he downplays his own heroism, and, already regarded for his utmost honesty, gives an accurate account of the Battles of Las Gu Written from a loose frame of notes and from memory- a photographic memory at that- this book, written by Theodore Roosevelt, is phenomenal. The amount of data and detail are amazing. Expecting our 26th president to be a bit self serving, in a military campaign in Cuba that he was a major participant in, this book has none of that. Teddy gives credit where credit is due, he downplays his own heroism, and, already regarded for his utmost honesty, gives an accurate account of the Battles of Las Guasimas, Kettle Hill, and San Juan Hill. Roosevelt's writing style is coherent, extremely descriptive, and cerebral, though not overly so. This particular edition, beautifully illustrated, just made the reading that much more enjoyable. What a treat.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Tom

    "Credit should go with the performance of duty, and not with what is very often the accident of glory." - TR What a fun read. Much like US Grant's memoirs I felt like TR and I were having a beer and he was just matter-of-factly recounting his experiences. I did not know that Clara Barton was there in Cuba during the war which was fought over the sinking of the Maine which, according to continuing research, was probably due to bad ship design rather than Spanish monkey business. "Credit should go with the performance of duty, and not with what is very often the accident of glory." - TR What a fun read. Much like US Grant's memoirs I felt like TR and I were having a beer and he was just matter-of-factly recounting his experiences. I did not know that Clara Barton was there in Cuba during the war which was fought over the sinking of the Maine which, according to continuing research, was probably due to bad ship design rather than Spanish monkey business.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Brian Eshleman

    TR comes through more humble than I expected, more motivated to serve. He tells a stirring action tale and allows others to get credit. One can see the President who would shake up the Establishment and define the modern office.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Descending Angel

    Not only is Theodore Roosevelt considered one of the best presidents in America's history, he is, at least for me, one of the most interesting as a person. He clearly had character, had a mind for fairness and a love for country, unlike the swamp creature that's walking around today. This book is a love letter to the men that fought with him in the American-spanish war in Cuba and it's good, engaging and I enjoyed it alot. Not only is Theodore Roosevelt considered one of the best presidents in America's history, he is, at least for me, one of the most interesting as a person. He clearly had character, had a mind for fairness and a love for country, unlike the swamp creature that's walking around today. This book is a love letter to the men that fought with him in the American-spanish war in Cuba and it's good, engaging and I enjoyed it alot.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Porter Broyles

    It's been said that Teddy wanted to be the center of attention wherever he went. He never attended a wedding wherein he didn't want to be the bride or a funeral wherein he didn't want to be the corpse. He wanted to be the focal point. When his rough riders went to Cuba, Roosevelt took a press agent with him to ensure that the press coverage on his was perfect. But I digress from the book itself. When I picked up this book (via Recorded Books), I did so with a fair amount of trepidation. Teddy has It's been said that Teddy wanted to be the center of attention wherever he went. He never attended a wedding wherein he didn't want to be the bride or a funeral wherein he didn't want to be the corpse. He wanted to be the focal point. When his rough riders went to Cuba, Roosevelt took a press agent with him to ensure that the press coverage on his was perfect. But I digress from the book itself. When I picked up this book (via Recorded Books), I did so with a fair amount of trepidation. Teddy has a solid reputation for being a good writer, but I was not sure of what to expect from a book 125 years old. Would this be well written book that used words that nobody uses anymore? Would it be written in a style that is foreign of unfamiliar? Or would I be able to simply enjoy the book? I found the later to be the case. The narration is smooth and crisp. The characters are presented in clear manner that propels the story forward. What I enjoyed the most about the book is that it makes you feel as if you are sitting there listening to Roosevelt telling the tale first hand. I felt as if I was getting to know Roosevelt as he sat around the campfire sharing anecdotes from the day. I also found myself liking the man he presented himself as in the book. In many semi-autobiographies, the author goes to extreme ends to make themselves greater than they really are. Teddy did so, but in a round about manner. When talking about his men, he always lifted them up and praised their actions. "I mention these men not because they did anything super special, but because what they did do is indicative of the entire unit. If you think these actions are great, then you are missing so many other actions from the rest of my men." When he criticizes others he rarely named the offender and focused his criticism on the action not the individual. In doing so, he emsured that he didn't offend others specifically, but protected them so that they could suport him. He crititicized the operation, he would criticize the leadership of said operation, but rarely laid blame on a specific individual. His troops loved him, fellow officers loved him. Don't listen the book as historical work, but rather as a bridge between you and the President. In this regard I loved the work. My Big criticism of the book is that the person who read the book had the perfect voice for a Lordly type made. The voice actor sounds too empeccable for me. Roosevelt famously has a peculiar penchant for the accent that he provides to the letter "P" Would have loved the voice actor to capture that portion of his character. I wanted to hear his lisp.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Mohammad Ali Abedi

    Before Theodore Roosevelt became the President of the United States, he had a war experience, which was less like the soldiers in WW2 and more of a fun adventure for Roosevelt. First of all, this was probably the beginning of unnecessary wars for the United States. Each generation of American probably needs his war. First they started fighting all those natives in the land, then they spend some time fighting the British, then when all of that was done, they decided to have some internal fighting. Before Theodore Roosevelt became the President of the United States, he had a war experience, which was less like the soldiers in WW2 and more of a fun adventure for Roosevelt. First of all, this was probably the beginning of unnecessary wars for the United States. Each generation of American probably needs his war. First they started fighting all those natives in the land, then they spend some time fighting the British, then when all of that was done, they decided to have some internal fighting. This should have given them pause for some time, but America already had a big boner for war and when the Spanish were fighting the Cubans in Cuba, America decided to go help the Cubans and kick out the Spanish, in their soon to be healthy tradition of always helping natives of foreign lands by means of blood. Thank you, USA. Since Roosevelt wasn’t involved in killing Indians, or the British, or each other, he couldn’t let killing INSERT NAME IN BLANK get away from him. When the opportunity of war came up, he volunteers with a bunch of others, and joins for some fun time. His book on his team, nicknamed “Rough Riders”, is basically 200 pages of him telling us the reader how awesome their unit was, how everyone in it was brave and had massive balls, and how they all were dignified and heroic, and how much ass they kicked. The book makes the war out to be something like a fishing trip. "I did not see any sign among the fighting men, whether wounded or unwounded, of the very complicated emotions assigned to their kind by some of the realistic modern novelists who have written about battles."

  13. 4 out of 5

    Marti

    In the town where I live there is a major monument to the Spanish American War which I always thought was strange due to the fact that it seemed rather minor as wars go. Spain certainly did not try very hard to defend Cuba and the whole thing lasted about two weeks. Roosevelt narrates the whole affair in a way that resembles play-by-play in a football game. Every participant is described in the most glowing terms. Everyone was anxious to see action and those left behind literally cried. Lack of In the town where I live there is a major monument to the Spanish American War which I always thought was strange due to the fact that it seemed rather minor as wars go. Spain certainly did not try very hard to defend Cuba and the whole thing lasted about two weeks. Roosevelt narrates the whole affair in a way that resembles play-by-play in a football game. Every participant is described in the most glowing terms. Everyone was anxious to see action and those left behind literally cried. Lack of food and overcrowding aboard the transport ship to Cuba actually sounded pretty appalling, but according to T.R., nobody complained. In fact, Washington seems to have severely botched the logistics of moving troops and food to the battlefield and a lot of high-potential young men with their whole lives ahead of them were killed for nothing. Roughly a quarter of the combatants died either in battle or from malaria and dysentery, causing me to wonder if the rank and file who were severely injured thought the cause was so glorious once it was over. Admittedly, these were very different times. There is no denying that this was definitely the the turning point in T.R.'s career and this volume is part of his propaganda machine. However, this is not to say he was not exposed to real danger.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Gator

    Toxic Masculinity ✅ Patriotism ✅ Insensitive words✅ Nationalism ✅ If you’re looking for a manly book, you’ve found it. This book is so politically incorrect for 2018 and I love it, it’s reminiscent of a different time when men where men and we were all ok with that fact. Teddy was no Shakespeare but damnit he was manly! In today’s PC circus a book of this magnitude is so appreciated, it definitely inspires one to stop whining and grow a set of man parts. In the words of the famous poet DMX, “Ryd Toxic Masculinity ✅ Patriotism ✅ Insensitive words✅ Nationalism ✅ If you’re looking for a manly book, you’ve found it. This book is so politically incorrect for 2018 and I love it, it’s reminiscent of a different time when men where men and we were all ok with that fact. Teddy was no Shakespeare but damnit he was manly! In today’s PC circus a book of this magnitude is so appreciated, it definitely inspires one to stop whining and grow a set of man parts. In the words of the famous poet DMX, “Ryde or Die.”

  15. 5 out of 5

    Alex

    A good read. TR puts his charisma into his writing and does a good job of holding the readers' attention. He includes the horrors of battle but does not go overboard in describing the gory details. His tale of San Juan hill held my attention from beginning to end. A good read. TR puts his charisma into his writing and does a good job of holding the readers' attention. He includes the horrors of battle but does not go overboard in describing the gory details. His tale of San Juan hill held my attention from beginning to end.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Alex

    Picture this: A US naval ship is sunk off the coast of Cuba by the Spanish. The US Army is now relatively tattered and is in no shape to staff a response. A call is put out for volunteers. In rides Teddy Roosevelt, who pulls together a ragtag troop of farmers, ranchers, miners, and Native Americans from the West and Ivy-Leaguers and city slickers from the East. The scene was so laughable they even drew their moniker from Buffalo Bill’s traveling circus (Buffalo Bill's Wild West and Congress of R Picture this: A US naval ship is sunk off the coast of Cuba by the Spanish. The US Army is now relatively tattered and is in no shape to staff a response. A call is put out for volunteers. In rides Teddy Roosevelt, who pulls together a ragtag troop of farmers, ranchers, miners, and Native Americans from the West and Ivy-Leaguers and city slickers from the East. The scene was so laughable they even drew their moniker from Buffalo Bill’s traveling circus (Buffalo Bill's Wild West and Congress of Rough Riders of the World). And yet this crew comes together, goes to Cuba, and serves a critical role in one of the decisive battles of the Spanish-American War. Though they didn’t have formal training, they were skilled with horse and gun and were every bit the warriors that the enlisted soldiers were. One of the Rough Riders was shot seven times in 30 minutes (three in the neck!) and kept pressing forward. He survived. Another, whose legs had been incapacitated in battle, crawled out of the makeshift hospital in the middle of the night, preferring to die on the battlefield rather than being brought home to health and safety. There is story after story like that. Their courage was inspiring, even if reckless. Teddy’s writing style is effective here, too. It is straightforward and honest. There is one passage for example where he is describing two captains plotting the next day’s strategy. He writes of their virtues; of their courage and resolve. After this lengthy acclamation he ends the paragraph with a jarring sentence. “12 hours later they were both dead.” It’s a striking technique that draws out the harsh reality of the scene. It was no stage production. Yes, Teddy can be a divisive figure. To some, for his personality. To others, for his professional and political endeavors. This account shows a side of him that cuts across all of that. He had a charisma and natural understanding of leadership that was undeniable. For that alone this was a worthwhile read.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Matt

    “...and in the evening, as the bands of regiment after regiment played the ‘Star-Spangled Banner,’ all, officers and men alike, stood with heads uncovered, wherever they were, until the last strains of the anthem died away in the hot sunset air.”

  18. 5 out of 5

    Thomas

    ~My men were children of the dragon’s blood~

  19. 4 out of 5

    Colin Nelson-Pinkston

    Decent book Decent book, the ending is fairly abrupt. But they seemed like quite a profound group of men coming together in a time of need.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Mark Luongo

    An audio book, on cassette no less. Purchased at a flea market. It was nice having TR's words read out loud. An audio book, on cassette no less. Purchased at a flea market. It was nice having TR's words read out loud.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Tom Kepler

    A stereotype of the American man exists: a man of purity with a simple, straightforward manner of supporting right and opposing wrong with bravery and fortitude. There is also another side to that stereotype: a man whose simple perspective of right and wrong minimizes minorities and significant perspectives just because they don't fit into that simple world view. I think Theodore Roosevelt and his era fit both sides of that stereotype of the American man, good and bad. In 1898 the American governm A stereotype of the American man exists: a man of purity with a simple, straightforward manner of supporting right and opposing wrong with bravery and fortitude. There is also another side to that stereotype: a man whose simple perspective of right and wrong minimizes minorities and significant perspectives just because they don't fit into that simple world view. I think Theodore Roosevelt and his era fit both sides of that stereotype of the American man, good and bad. In 1898 the American government allowed for the raising of a volunteer fighting unit to assist the army during the Spanish-American War. Theodore Roosevelt was a key player in the raising and fighting of that unit, specifically of the 1st United States Volunteer Calvary. Three regiments were raised, but only the 1st actually went to Cuba and fought. Roosevelt's The Rough Riders is his account of that fight, and it is written with Roosevelt's usual straightforward, highly readable prose style. Stated in an unemotional and "I was there" objective style, Roosevelt's account includes the sweep of history and also the nuts and bolts of the military campaign to whip the Spaniards in Cuba. The account begins with the raising of the regiments, their training, and their transport to Cuba. It describes the campaign with an eye focused on detail, events, and all the interesting and colorful men who volunteered and fought. As with his book Through the Brazilian Wilderness, Roosevelt matter-of-factly depicts the great suffering contained within the events with words that describe the facts but eschew the emotions. That is to say, there is enough of a naturalist and journalist in him to describe in full what happened, but you aren't going to hear him whining about the horrendous nature of the circumstances. When I wrote book reviews of Roosevelt's Through the Brazilian Wilderness and Candice Millard's chronicle The River of Doubt: Theodore Roosevelt's Darkest Journey, two accounts of the same event, one personal and the other scholarly, I discovered Roosevelt's penchant for baldly stating a difficult circumstance in his account--and then when reading Millard's account, discovering the great amount of detail that was left out by Roosevelt because he felt it would be too close to the emotional bone and might have been construed as whining or complaining. (Roosevelt mentions his disregard for whiners several times in The Rough Riders.) Without whining, Roosevelt catalogs the United States' unpreparedness for the military campaign in Cuba. --Lack of adequate transportation, resulting in the suffering of troops and inadequate materiel. --Front line shortages of food, medicine, clothing and shelter--almost everything but ammunition. --Older weapons that smoked when fired, allowing Spain to fire upon gun placements with their placements that couldn't be located because of smokeless powder. However, the Americans prevailed, and Roosevelt describes the brave and selfless actions of his men and also of the regular army. He praises men educated and uneducated, men of different races and ethnic backgrounds. He looks upon them as individuals, and as the book progresses, we see that his judgment of the men as individuals earns him their respect. Even though Roosevelt writes this about himself, based on what I've read about him, I believe it to be true. As we read about events written about from over a hundred years ago--as we read from an era when a Black American president has just been re-elected--we see that paradox of men who fought side by side, men of all races and backgrounds--men who judged one another on their individual manly qualities, and yet men who still were affected by and unconsciously promulgated the biases of the era. Roosevelt praises the fighting abilities of the Black regular soldiers, yet the regulars were in a segregated regiment and led by white officers. He states that he was surprised that the Blacks were just as susceptible to malaria as whites; I assume his thinking was that since Blacks had come from Africa that there would be a genetic resistance to the disease. Roosevelt mentions casually all the officers who had been to the big schools in America--the Good Old Boy network--as just the way things were. All these inequities are subsumed in the reality that these men of the Rough Riders lived and fought side by side in appalling conditions: fought, were wounded, and died with equal respect for bravery and perseverance, and with equal understanding that some men broke under the pressure and stress of the circumstances. The Rough Riders paints a fascinating picture of a past time, a first-hand account written by a fascinating American. I downloaded my free eBook of The Rough Riders through the Kindle Store, but it is also available through Project Gutenberg. The particular edition listed through Goodreads I didn't use, so I can't comment on the introduction.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Steve McHenry

    Fantastic read! Very interesting. Great historical document by one of our nation's most charismatic leaders. Thoroughly enjoyed it, and finished it in one day. Highly recommended! Fantastic read! Very interesting. Great historical document by one of our nation's most charismatic leaders. Thoroughly enjoyed it, and finished it in one day. Highly recommended!

  23. 5 out of 5

    D. Jason

    Teddy Roosevelt's memoir of the less-than-six-months' existence of the Rough Riders, a volunteer cavalry unit formed for the sole purpose of serving in the Spanish-American War, is a breezy and entertaining read. It is also a rather astonishing look into an alien world --- the world that used to be the United States, but is no longer. Roosevelt was the Assistant Secretary of the Navy in 1898. Though he doesn't make this clear in the book, he was the de facto Secretary and basically in charge of th Teddy Roosevelt's memoir of the less-than-six-months' existence of the Rough Riders, a volunteer cavalry unit formed for the sole purpose of serving in the Spanish-American War, is a breezy and entertaining read. It is also a rather astonishing look into an alien world --- the world that used to be the United States, but is no longer. Roosevelt was the Assistant Secretary of the Navy in 1898. Though he doesn't make this clear in the book, he was the de facto Secretary and basically in charge of the Navy. And he resigned in order to form a new cavalry regiment and go serve on the front lines of the war that everyone knew was coming. Try to imagine ANY modern politician doing this. Some, certainly, served in the military prior to their political careers. Many, in fact, did so in furtherance of those same careers. None, not one, would voluntarily surrender political power to risk death. It's inconceivable. Roosevelt, for all his swaggering bombast, did just that. TR not only tells the story of the regiment from his perspective, he contrasts his observations and experiences with Spanish accounts of the battles in which he was involved (and, not surprisingly, finds them wanting), as well as including an appendix of "Corrections" where he shares observations from other Rough Riders that contrast somewhat with his memories, as well as taking apart completely another book that supposedly told the story of the taking of Santiago, Cuba. Another historical insight that doesn't get taught today is that at this time, the US Army was all but racially integrated. TR and the Rough Riders fought side by side with at least two black regiments, and while his attitude toward them is somewhat patronizing, it is far less so than one would expect for the period. And he expresses zero reservations about black troops wielding weapons, not even implicitly. The Rough Riders themselves had many full-blooded and half-breed Indians in their ranks, also without any hint of tension or discord. (The armed forces were re-segregated under Democrat Woodrow Wilson, whose racist policies were carried through World War II.) In all, an informative and entertaining read, though it does not supply the entire context that it might have (it was written for an audience that TR presumes -- correctly -- already knew that context), and he might have taken more time to let the reader get to know more of the soldiers whose names he lists so frequently. But these flaws are simple absences. In my quick reading, there is no flaw of inclusion in the book, only things that were not there that I wish had been.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Anne Kennedy

    I have always admired Teddy Roosevelt and have read many of his books. This is a great history of the Spanish American War in Cuba, Roosevelt's own account of his experience commanding the Rough Riders. Teddy has nothing but praise for the many soldiers sent to fight that war. The faults he finds center around the government's lack of providing for the troops and the detrimental decisions made by Washington. His report is very detailed. I once lived in Las Vegas, New Mexico and the Rough Rider M I have always admired Teddy Roosevelt and have read many of his books. This is a great history of the Spanish American War in Cuba, Roosevelt's own account of his experience commanding the Rough Riders. Teddy has nothing but praise for the many soldiers sent to fight that war. The faults he finds center around the government's lack of providing for the troops and the detrimental decisions made by Washington. His report is very detailed. I once lived in Las Vegas, New Mexico and the Rough Rider Museum is there. Teddy often went their for troop reunions. Regretfully, I never visited the museum. This is a great war history from a man who lived through it himself. From his account, a man can learn what it means to be a true leader. TR set the example for his men and they followed because they simply respected him and he they.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Jon Hembree

    Great Eyewitness account The Rough Riders by Theodore Roosevelt gives the story of the Rough Riders regiment that Roosevelt helped lead into the Spanish American War in Cuba. They were the only volunteer regiment that saw combat. We get the firsthand story from Roosevelt himself, who, while not fancy in his writing, tells a very engaging story. My favorite parts were the very beginning and end, though, where he introduces us to the various men of the regiment, giving us their background stories, Great Eyewitness account The Rough Riders by Theodore Roosevelt gives the story of the Rough Riders regiment that Roosevelt helped lead into the Spanish American War in Cuba. They were the only volunteer regiment that saw combat. We get the firsthand story from Roosevelt himself, who, while not fancy in his writing, tells a very engaging story. My favorite parts were the very beginning and end, though, where he introduces us to the various men of the regiment, giving us their background stories, and then closes out with what some of them did after the war was over. History buffs will love it, but if you like a good read, it's enjoyable for everyone.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Brandon Pytel

    A great first-hand account of an oft-overlooked war in American History. Roosevelt recounts the ragtag group of Rough Riders he assembles in the Southwest, the journey they take to Tampa and then Cuba, and the violent battles that encounter (resulting in a loss of a fourth of his men). Roosevelt throws around words like courage, strength, vigor, orderliness, obedience, and above all, a sense of man's duty for his country in the face of violence and even defeat. War can devolve into chaos amidst A great first-hand account of an oft-overlooked war in American History. Roosevelt recounts the ragtag group of Rough Riders he assembles in the Southwest, the journey they take to Tampa and then Cuba, and the violent battles that encounter (resulting in a loss of a fourth of his men). Roosevelt throws around words like courage, strength, vigor, orderliness, obedience, and above all, a sense of man's duty for his country in the face of violence and even defeat. War can devolve into chaos amidst the noise of battle. Roosevelt's account illustrates his principles and his commitment to his fellow men and his love and friendships with them.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Lyn

    Descriptive, reads like how he probably talked, energetic and precise. I liked the letters he wrote at the end lambasting higher command for poor rations, supplies, transportation, etc. He was a handful, no doubt.

  28. 5 out of 5

    JL Coy

    What a perfect wrap-up to the McGraw Kidnapping series! BJ Daniels amazes me that she can keep coming up with fresh new ideas for her books. After all, they are suspenseful romance books, but she keeps us on the edge of our seats through every single book. Rough Rider is no exception – it’s different from the other McGraw kidnapping books, yet Daniels artfully weaves in the back story so we never get bored or feel like ‘oh, I’ve read that before’. It all flows into the new story. Boone McGraw hea What a perfect wrap-up to the McGraw Kidnapping series! BJ Daniels amazes me that she can keep coming up with fresh new ideas for her books. After all, they are suspenseful romance books, but she keeps us on the edge of our seats through every single book. Rough Rider is no exception – it’s different from the other McGraw kidnapping books, yet Daniels artfully weaves in the back story so we never get bored or feel like ‘oh, I’ve read that before’. It all flows into the new story. Boone McGraw heads to Butte, MT to meet up with a PI that indicated he had information about the kidnapping of Jesse Rose, twenty-five years earlier. He’s too late to meet Hank Knight, though. The PI was killed right after contacting the McGraw family lawyer. He finds Hank’s partner, CJ Knight and refuses to leave her side until he learns what Hank knew about Jesse Rose. CJ only wants to find Hank’s killer. With their separate agendas, Boone and CJ embark on investigations that puts them in peril, but from who? Boone is sure it’s tied to the kidnapping, however, CJ is equally sure it’s NOT tied to the kidnapping. Soon, however, she learns that her beloved Hank may have had information. She and Boone then work at finding out what that information is. The book wraps up nearly every loose end in the series. I especially like that. I love that this book took place in a new town. BJ Daniels includes a side of Butte that encompasses the history of the town. In fact, Butte is an integral to the story as anything else. It’s like another character with good and bad traits. This book made me want to go to Butte on my next vacation out west, to check out the ‘historical’ aspect of the town. I was given this book for an honest review. I would highly recommend the whole series. Daniels doesn’t write bad books at all. They are all great reads.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Kyle Magin

    Man oh man, how to rate Teddy Roosevelt? First, this is a super readable book. Roosevelt writes in a rollicking style and speeds through the narrative like a locomotive. Even his frequent asides barely leave you time to catch your breath. There's not much jargon if you're somewhat familiar with the military and outdoors. Now, here's the two readings I had of the book while working through it: 1) Teddy was horny for war and soldiering and saw the whole thing as a big fucking adventure. He was hellb Man oh man, how to rate Teddy Roosevelt? First, this is a super readable book. Roosevelt writes in a rollicking style and speeds through the narrative like a locomotive. Even his frequent asides barely leave you time to catch your breath. There's not much jargon if you're somewhat familiar with the military and outdoors. Now, here's the two readings I had of the book while working through it: 1) Teddy was horny for war and soldiering and saw the whole thing as a big fucking adventure. He was hellbent on getting into the fight because that was a fun thing to do and a major box to check on his bucket list. 2) Teddy was horny for war and soldiering and did it to bolster his political standing. Listen, Mr. Big Rough Rider mustered himself out of a deputy cabinet position to fight a sort of weird war that the media was all over. He recruited some rough and tumble westerners and EXTREMELY well-connected eastern athletes (Harvard, Yale football boys) to join him on his glory-building campaign. Seeing as the Rough Riders served as the tiny yet mighty core of his base for the rest of his life, it's probable Teddy saw the long-term benefits in assembling this particular roster just before his New York Gubernatorial run and eventually play for the vice presidency and presidency. Being a connected war hero with champions in damn near every state at that time in American history would be useful to a politician. I like Teddy, but I also respect him, so I'd bet the truth of the matter was somewhere in the middle. Teddy wanted to soldier, and decided if he was going to do it, he'd make it serve his ambition. In either reading, you can see a leader who gave a ton of credit to his men and sought to glorify their exploits at every turn.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Jeremy D Lucas

    For a book about wartime, about hardened, tough, and fearless soldiers, this is one of those rare works that seems, also, to be a book about love and affection within the ranks and the hierarchy of a volunteer regiment, fighting not because they had to, but because they wanted to, because they wanted, together and independently, to achieve that sense of valor without want for anything else. More touching, perhaps, than even the relationship these men had with their colonel, is the way he, a futu For a book about wartime, about hardened, tough, and fearless soldiers, this is one of those rare works that seems, also, to be a book about love and affection within the ranks and the hierarchy of a volunteer regiment, fighting not because they had to, but because they wanted to, because they wanted, together and independently, to achieve that sense of valor without want for anything else. More touching, perhaps, than even the relationship these men had with their colonel, is the way he, a future president, dotes on them, never once berating or harboring ill for a single man, but instead showering them with praise and acclaim, each in his own right, each in his own way. My favorite anecdote is the one in which Roosevelt tells of a charge he asked of his men, a push forward, toward Santiago, to which he leapt onward and into the midst of danger, only to find five of several hundred men with him, to which, while taking fire, he returned, and smirked at their profuse apologies for not having heard his call. He was a leader with a sense of humor.

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