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Becoming Teddy Roosevelt: How a Maine Guide Inspired America's 26th President
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Becoming Teddy Roosevelt: How a Maine Guide Inspired America's 26th President

3.99  ·  Rating details ·  89 ratings  ·  18 reviews
This inspirational tale of friendship and determination also sheds new light on the role of the mentor's mentor. Discover why this friendship was so crucial to Roosevelt's development as a man and a president-and why it still matters today.
Hardcover, 205 pages
Published February 16th 2010 by Down East Books (first published January 1st 2010)
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3.99  · 
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 ·  89 ratings  ·  18 reviews

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Aug 30, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: my-ebooks
A must read for those of us from the County!! I learned a lot of history about Island Falls, Dyer Brook and Bill Sewall. Makes me want to plan another vacation home so dad can take me on another adventure to Bible Point:).

@Laurie and Mom, you definitely need to read this book!!!
Feb 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
When I finished reading The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, I decided I would learn more about Franklin Roosevelt and Winston Churchill. I've always been an American history geek. I searched my online local library and instead of finding any books about Franklin Roosevelt, I found a biography of Theodore Roosevelt. I’d always wanted to know more about him, as well, so I borrowed the book. I found it fascinating. Of course, I’m a Mainer, so the fact that there was a lot about settling a small t ...more
Ted Hunt
Jun 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is a short, concise book that focuses entirely on the relationship between Theodore Roosevelt and Maine woodsman William Sewall. Its objective is thus very limited, but it achieves its purpose very well, which is the reason for my high rating. The book's emphasis is on the times that the two men spent together, first in Maine when TR was a student at Harvard, and then in the years after his first wife's death when Roosevelt built and worked his ranch in North Dakota. There are sections that ...more
Jun 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is not a detailed history of Theodore Roosevelt as American President but rather exploring how he became the man he was. As a child he was smaller than his age group and dealt with asthma and other health problems and was advised to lead a sedentary life. He decided to build himself into an outdoorsman by spending time in the back woods of Maine establishing a lifelong relationship with William Seward and his family who hunted, fished, built their own homes, and lived off the land. Thi ...more
Christian Engler
Sep 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Theodore Roosevelt was a sickly child who suffered from severe asthma. Despite his weakness and ill health, he was brought up in a loving home with parents and kin who fostered his obvious intellectual gifts and quest for never ending learning. To compensate for his physical weakness, his parents sent him to Island Falls, Maine-a woodsman's dream paradise-hoping that the fresh mountain and woodsy air of Maine would rejuvenate his physical frailty. When introduced to his guide, Bill Sewall, a qui ...more
Sep 25, 2015 rated it really liked it
Many people know that Teddy Roosevelt was a sickly child that became a robust, outdoors-man, naturalist and leader. A large part of that transformation is told in his relationship with Bill Sewall. Friends matter and Sewall's roles and guide, mentor, and supporter in Roosevelt's life were significant. The story of Roosevelt's Dakota years following the deaths of his wife and mother with 24 hours of each other can't be told without examining the role of Sewall. This book is an excellent follow-up ...more
Mark Fallon
Aug 09, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Most fans of Theodore Roosevelt know the story of how he transformed himself from a frail, timid child into a man known for his physical strength and moral courage. Vietze focuses on the impact of Bill Sewall, a Maine guide, who first met TR in 1878 on his first trip to Maine. Sewall remained TR's mentor and friend for the next 40 years, even following the future President into the Badlands of the Dakota Territory to be cattlemen.

An enjoyable book and excellent addition to my Roosevelt collecti
May 13, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Enjoyed reading about a man who had an impact on the 26th president's life and how he remained his loyal friend all of his life. Sad to hear how even back then, the media did not care how they portrayed people if it sold papers.

An interesting quote from Bill Sewall "Most people have the idea that he was a strong man. He was far from that; he was physically weak all his life, but never let it be known except to those with whom he was most intimate. The reason people did not know about it was he
Aug 04, 2011 rated it liked it
Teddy Roosevelt climbed Katahdin in moccasins because he lost a boot crossing a river?! Gosh! And that is such a hard hike too and that's with boots and, presumably, clearer trails now. Bill Sewall of Island Falls, ME, was Roosevelt's guide and a formative influence when Roosevelt was a young man. This is one of the most positive profiles that I have ever read of anyone! Kind of refreshing but does lead one to believe that Sewall was a saint! Now maybe I'll get around to reading that doorstop bi ...more
Marie French
Nov 03, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A really neat perspective on Teddy Roosevelt from his good friend and confidante, Bill Sewall... Maine guide from Island Falls. What a trip to be reading about a place so close to where we live now and so close to where I used to live! This is a great intro or follow-up to "Mornings on Horse Back" by David McCullough.
Nancie Stone
Oct 10, 2015 rated it really liked it
The author focuses on the relationship between TR and a Maine outdoorsman who became a lifelong friend. The book isn't intended as an in-depth examination of Roosevelt's life, but instead focuses on a relationship that usually isn't fully developed in larger biographies. Nicely written, although sometimes the author seemed to be stretching his material.
Aug 06, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting insight into life of Teddy Roosevelt from a different perspective, that of an adventurous recreationalist. My love of all things Maine and of American history drew me to the book. It reads quickly and enjoyably.
Sam Motes
Jul 26, 2016 rated it really liked it
Great gift from my wife from her trip to Maine since she knows I love reading presidential history. This one gives great insight into on of TRs role models in life. This is a great read on the formative years of TR and the legendary guide Sewall from The north woods.
Sep 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
Good bit of Maine history not known to me before and interesting insight into TR.
Nancy Noble
Dec 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I read this for the Maine Historical Society book group and really enjoyed it - and I learned a lot!
Jan 30, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great history of the country and Teddy Roosevelt
A great read about two great men.
Gail Roy
Very interesting and enjoyable read. Read this book and take a drive to Island Falls, Maine.
Jason Packard
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The former Managing Editor of Down East: The Magazine of Maine, Andrew Vietze is the bestselling author of eight books, including the critically acclaimed Boon Island (Globe Pequot, 2012) and Becoming Teddy Roosevelt (Down East, 2010). Publishers Weekly called Boon Island “a maritime whodunit rife with twists and turns and high drama;” The Portsmouth Herald dubbed it “superb. . . both a well-resea