Whether you believe in the righteousness of American might, are a tree-hugging conservationist or wear feminism like a pair of jeans, you owe a debt.
The 26th President of the United States played a key role in shaping the American Century and in carving out a place for everyone at the table.
So celebrate the man and the myth Thursday. The iconic Long Islander was born on this date 153 years ago. Raised in Manhattan and schooled at Harvard, Roosevelt fondly remembered youthful trips to Long Island when he eventually bought a tract of land in Cove Neck.
Roosevelt built in 1887, a place cemented into history as the Summer White House from 1902-08. He and second wife, Edith, raised six children in the home.
Roosevelt even died at Sagamore Hill on Jan. 6, 1919, at the age of 60. He is modestly buried nearby at .
The intervening 32 years saw TR build a legacy only the Founding Fathers could match in depth and breadth. While president, Roosevelt put aside 234 million acres of pristine land as the foundation of our National Park system, built the Panama Canal and showcased American naval might thanks to the Great White Fleet.
Those were each grand gestures. So was the fact he broke bread with Booker T. Washington, the first black man invited to dinner at the White House. He championed workers rights, reined in the power of large corporations and became the first American to win the Nobel Peace Prize for his role in ending war between Japan and Russia.
Before he was governor of New York, a war hero or Vice President of the United States, Roosevelt served as a Civil Service Commissioner. There he advanced meritocracy, which put women on equal footing with men for government jobs.
Teddy was a trailblazer. He charged up San Juan Hill, mapped a tributary of the Amazon and hunted lions in Africa.
It's all part of the TR myth. He belongs to history, but much of that history was shaped from his retreat overlooking Oyster Bay.
His legacy is worth honoring. So on his birthday, remember the man.
Gaze upon his bust outside .
Hike the .
Take a tour of (which is in December).
Visit his .