Analyze and discuss the different approaches which Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson took in their response to Progressivism.




SOURCE: Collections of the Library of Congress



          When (J. Pierpont) Morgan heard of the President's opposition to the merger he went to Washington and said to him, "If we have done anything wrong send your man (meaning Attorney-General Knox) to my man (naming one of his lawyers) and they can fix it up."  "That can't be done," said the President. ...  Roosevelt requested an opinion from Attorney-General Knox, ... "Sometime ago the President requested an opinion as to the legality of this merger, and I have recently given him one to the effect that, in my judgment, it violates the provisions of the Sherman Act of 1890 (the Anti-Trust Act), whereupon he directed that suitable action should be taken to have the question judicially determined."  ... The case went to the United States Supreme Court, the majority opinion of which was written by Justice Harlan (March 14, 1904), which took the ground that the merger was opposed to the Anti-Trust Act of 1890 and therefore illegal; ...  He thus wrote: "... The power to deal with industrial monopoly and suppress it and to control and regulate combinations, of which the Knight case had deprived the Federal Government, was thus restored to it by the Northern Securities case." ...  A goodly part of the history of his administration is due to that conflict, and as Roosevelt was effective as a fighter, he was ready to throw down the gauntlet.

SOURCE:  Roosevelt the Trust Buster (1904)



          I have recently had an investigation made by Commissioner Neill of the Labor Bureau and Mr. J.B. Reynolds, of the situation in Chicago packing houses.   It is hideous, and it must be remedied at once.  ....Of course what I am after is not to do damage even to the packers, still less to the stockmen and farmers.  What I want is the immediate betterment of the dreadful conditions that prevail, and moreover the providing against a possible recurrence of these conditions.  ....I should not make the report public with the idea of damaging the packers. I should do it only if it were necessary in order to secure the remedy.

SOURCE:  Roosevelt Insists on Regulatory Legislation, 1906




          I stand for the square deal....Now this means that our government, national and State, must be freed from the sinister influence of or control of special interests.  ...so now the great special business interests too often control and corrupt the men and methods of government for their own profit.  We must drive the special interests out of politics....  It has become entirely clear that we must have government supervision of the capitalization, not only of public service corporations, including, particularly, railways, but of all corporations doing an interstate business.  .... This New Nationalism regards the executive power as the steward of the public welfare.

SOURCE:  The New Nationalism, 1910




          The first message of President Roosevelt to Congress contained these words: "The forest and water problems are perhaps the most vital internal questions of the United States."...  Reclamation and conservation had this in common: the purpose of both was the intelligent and efficient utilization of the natural resources of the country for the benefit of the people of the country.  But they differed in one respect... Conservation, on the other hand, had begun by with-holding the natural resources from exploitation and extravagant use.  ...On the very day that the first Roosevelt message was read to Congress, a committee of Western Senators and Congressmen was organized under the leadership of Senator Francis G. Newlands of Nevada, to prepare a Reclamation Bill.   ...The Reclamation Act set aside the proceeds of the sale of public lands for the purpose of reclaiming the waste areas of the arid West.    Lands otherwise worthless were to be irrigated and in those new regions of agricultural productivity homes were to be established.

SOURCE:  Reclamation and Conservation, 1908, Howland Harold



          ...I take my stand absolutely, where every progressive ought to take his stand, on the proposition that private monopoly is indefensible and intolerable.  ...the great money lenders of this country are in the arrangement with the great manufacturers of this country, and they do not propose to see their control of the market interfered with by outsiders. .. the rest of the people of the United States are outsiders. ...The big trusts, the big combinations, are the wasteful, the most uneconomical, and, after they pass a certain size, the most inefficient, way of conducting the industries of this country.  ... A trust is an arrangement to get rid of competition, and a big business is a business that has survived competition by conquering in the field of intelligence and economy.   A trust does not bring efficiency to the aid of business; it buys efficiency out of business.    I am for big business and I am against the trusts.   ... And the business of the party now entrusted with power is going to be to dissolve it.

SOURCE:  The New Freedom, 1913



          Our duty is to cleanse, to reconsider, to restore, to correct the evil without impairing the good, to purify and humanize every process of our common life without weakening or sentimentalizing it.   ...Our work is a work of restoration.  We have itemized with some degree of particularity the things that ought to be altered and here are some of our chief items:   A tariff which cuts us off from our proper part in the commerce of the world, violates the just principles of taxation, and makes the Government a facile instrument in the hand of private interests; a banking and currency system based upon the necessity of the Government to sell its bonds fifty years ago and perfectly adapted to concentrating cash and restricting credits; and industrial system which, take it on all its sides, financial as well as administrative, holds capital in leading strings, restricts the liberties and limits the opportunities of labor, and exploits without renewing or conserving the natural resources of the country; ...The first duty of law is to keep sound the society it serves.   Sanitary laws, pure food laws, and laws determining conditions of labor which individuals are powerless to determine for themselves are intimate parts of the very business of justice and legal efficiency.  We shall restore, not destroy.  We shall deal with our economic system as it is and as it may be modified, ...step by step we shall make it what it should be....

SOURCE:  First Inaugural Address of Woodrow Wilson, March 4, 1913



          Be it enacted, That a commission is hereby created and established, to be known as the Federal Trade Commission (hereinafter referred to as the commission), which shall be composed of five commissioners, who shall be appointed by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate. ....
Sec.5....The commission is hereby empowered and directed to prevent persons, partnerships, or corporations, except banks, and common carriers subject to the Acts to regulate commerce, from using unfair methods of competition in commerce.
          Whenever the commission shall have reason to believe....unfair method of competition in commerce...it shall issue and serve...a complaint stating its charges in that respect,...

SOURCE: The Federal Trade Commission Act, September 26, 1914



Sec. 3. That it shall be unlawful for any person engaged in commerce, to lease, or make a sale of goods, ...or fix a price charged therefore, or discount from, or rebate upon, such price, on the condition, ...

Sec. 6. ...Nothing contained in the anti-trust laws shall be construed to forbid the existence and operation of labor, agricultural, or horticultural organizations, instituted for the purposes of mutual help... or to forbid or restrain individual members of such organizations from lawfully carrying out the legitimate objects thereof; ...

Sec. 7. That no corporation engaged in commerce shall acquire, directly or indirectly, the whole or any part of the stock or other share capital of another corporation engaged also in commerce, where the effect of such acquisition may be to substantially lessen competition between the corporation whose stock is so acquired and the corporation making the acquisition, or to restrain such commerce...or tend to create a monopoly of any line of commerce.

SOURCE:  The Clayton Anti-Trust Act, October 15, 1914.



[On the pump : "Business Prosperity pump"
Near his mouth : "Now watch her come"
Bucket holding : "Anitrust Legislation"
Bucket behind him : "Tariff legislation"
Bucket in fornt of : "Curreny Leglislation"]

SOURCE: "Priming", June 26, 1914



Article XVI. (1913) The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States and without regard to any census or enumeration.

Article XVII. (1913) The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each State, elected by the people thereof, for six years and each Senator shall have one vote. ...

Article XIX. (1920) The rights of of the citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any States on account of sex.
The Congress shall have power to appropriate legislation to enforce the provisions of this article.

SOURCE:  The Constitution of the United States.







Berryman, Clifford K. Collections of Library of Congress. Rpt in.  United States Preparing For the Advance Placement Examination.  John J. Newman and John M. Schmalbech.  New York:  Amsco Publications, 1998.


Rhodes, James.  "Roosevelt the Trust Buster (1904)."  The McKinley and Roosevelt Administrations.  New York:  Macmillan, 1922.  221-227.  Rpt.  in Twentieth Century United States 1900-1929, Ed.  Albert B. Hart.  New York:  Macimillan, 1960.  Vol. 5.  of American History told by Contemporaries. 5 vols.  1887-1929.


Roosevelt, Theodore. "Roosevelt Insists on Regulatory Legislation, 1906."  Enduring Voices: From 1865. Ed. James J.  Lorence.  3rd ed.  Lexington:  D.C. Heath and Co., 1996. 145.


Roosevelt, Theodore.   "The New Nationalism."  A Documentary History of the United States. Ed. Richard D. Heffner.  6th ed.  New York: Mentor Book, 1999.   269-275.


Howland, Harold.   "Reclamation and Conservation."  Theodore Roosevelt and His Times.   New Haven: Yale UP, 1921. 130-149. Rpt.  in Twentieth Century United States 1900-1929.  Ed.  Albert B. Hart. New York: Macmillan, 1960.  Vol. 5 of American History told by Contemporaries.  5 vols. 1897-1929.


Woodrow, Wilson.  The New Freedom.  New York:  Doubleday, 1913.  Rpt.  in Great Issues in American History to the Present Day, 1864-1981.  Ed.  Beatrice and Richard Hofstadter.  New York: Vintage Books, 1982. 284-290.


Avalon Project: First Inaugural Address of Woodrow Wilson.  Ed.  William C. Fray and Lisa A. Spar. 14 Sept. 1999.  Yale Law School.  1 March 2000.


"Federal Trade Commission." Documents of American History.  Ed. Henry S. Commager. 5th ed. New York:  Appleton-Century-Crofts, Inc., 1940. 278-279.


"Clayton Anti-Trust Act."  Documents of American History.  Ed.  Henry S. Commager.   5th ed.  New York:  Appleton-Century-Crofts, Inc., 1940. 279-281.


Berryman, Clifford.   "Priming." NAIL Digital Copies Browse Results : Hits 55-63 of 100.   1 April 2000. Theodore Roosevelt Association.  26 June 1914.


Heffner, Richard D, ed.   "The Constitution of the United States."  A Documentary History of the United States.  6th ed.  New York:  Mentor Book, 1999. 35-36.


DBQ Question created by:
Ms. Daisy Torres
Class of 2001
Maria Regina H. S.
Hartsdale, NY
created in:  April, 2000