Oyster Bay in Nassau County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Roosevelts at Play
Sagamore Hill National Historic Site
Tennis at Sagamore Hill had unique challenges and court rules. The ground wasn’t level and tree branches closed in the court. The Roosevelts allowed “that when a ball hit a branch and might have gone in it was a ‘let.’”
For Theodore Roosevelt sports were about building character and body. They might get rough, with bruises and blood, but that was all part of the game. Roosevelt, his family – including cousins and their parents – and anyone else were welcome to play. In addition to tennis, games included football, swimming, obstacle courses, or any other event Roosevelt could turn into a competitive adventure. The most important rule of Roosevelt-led point-to-point (obstacle) walks were to “go over, under, or through – but never around.” It was all part of his belief in “the strenuous life.”
“Oh, those perfectly awful endurance contests masquerading as games!”
Erected by National Park Service.
Location. 40° 53.082′ N, 73° 30.161′ W. Marker is in Oyster Bay, New York, in Nassau County. Marker is on Sagamore Hill Road, on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Tennis Anyone? (within shouting distance of this marker); Sagamore Hill (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Quentin Roosevelt (about 400 feet away); Theodore Roosevelt (about 400 feet away); A Place in History (about 400 feet away); Atop Sagamore Hill (about 500 feet away); The House (about 500 feet away); Mounting Platform (about 500 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Oyster Bay.
More about this marker. The background of the marker features a photograph of Theodore Roosevelt, Jr. playing tennis with a cousin, ca. 1902. A photograph at the upper right of the marker depicts Theodore Roosevelt, some of his children, and cousins playing football, ca. 1894, with Kermit and Ethel watching from the sidelines. Below this is Theodore “Roosevelt’s sketch of himself playing tennis with Alford Cooley, from his letter to daughter Ethel on June 22, 1904.”
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Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on November 6, 2015, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 146 times since then and 31 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on November 6, 2015, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.