Wilson, Woodrow: Signed letter to Dr. William Hoyt

Wilson, Woodrow: Signed letter to Dr. William Hoyt
Letter to Dr. William Hoyt
Wilson, Woodrow: Signed letter to Dr. William Hoyt
Letter to Dr. William Hoyt

Wilson, Woodrow: Signed letter to Dr. William Hoyt

775.00

Wilson, Woodrow (1856 – 1924)

Letter to Dr. William Hoyt

President of the United States from 1913 to 1921. Typed letter signed as president elect. (“Woodrow Wilson”). 1 page. 4to. (8 x 9 3/4 inches). Bermuda, 30 November 1912. On his personal stationery. To Dr. William Hoyt, a cousin of his first wife, Ellen Axson Wilson whose mother was a member of the Hoyt family.

Your letter of November 10th has just come to us here, and I thank you most sincerely. It was very delightful to get it. We are all well, and hope to come back in fine shape.

Cordially and sincerely yours, Woodrow Wilson

The 1912 presidential election involved four different candidates. President Taft, the incumbent, was the Republican nominee. Former president Theodore Roosevelt, having lost the Republican nomination, formed the Progressive Party (nicknamed the Bull Moose Party) in order to challenge Taft and return to the White House. Labor rights activist Eugene V. Debs ran with support of the Socialist Party of America. The Democratic nominee was Woodrow Wilson, former president of Princeton University and governor of New Jersey. The race was highly contentious and, famously, Roosevelt was shot on the campaign trail. However, with the Republican vote split between Roosevelt and Taft, Wilson was elected by a wide margin. The 1912 election was also notable for being the last time a third party candidate, in this case the Socialist candidate, came in second.

The election took place on 5 November, after which Wilson and his family took a Bermuda vacation lasting from 18 November to 13 December. He had visited Bermuda several times before, during which he played miniature golf with Mark Twain and, somewhat indiscreetly, formed a relationship with local society dame Mary Allen Hurlbert Peck. Wilson’s wife forgave his infidelity but his past relationship with Peck threatened to sully his reputation during the 1912 election. Ultimately, the allegations did not hurt him politically since few, including his rivals, could imagine this prim academic figure having an extra-marital affair. Even with evidence to the contrary (in the form of letters between Wilson and Peck) Roosevelt could not believe Wilson capable of the affair, commenting, “Nothing, no evidence could ever make the American people believe that a man like Woodrow Wilson, cast so perfectly as the apothecary’s clerk, could ever play Romeo, (1912: Wilson, Roosevelt, Taft & Debs: The election that changed the country, Chace).

Our cheerful and optimistic letter, written in the midst of his Bermuda holiday, is darkly signed. Accompanied by the original mailing envelope. Normal mailing folds and in very good condition.

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