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Theodore Roosevelt Visits Dover

Theodore Roosevelt

August 29, 1902

President Roosevelt came to Dover, and was greeted by crowds of people. Franklin Square was packed with folk who came to see the first man of our great nation and it was said to be the first time within the history of the grand old city, that a President of the United States addressed its citizens from a public platform on one of the public squares. The stand was erected near the old watering trough on Franklin Square, and was handsomely decorated with the National Colors. About eleven o’clock the Dover band entered the stand near by provided for them, and gave a fine program.

At eleven thirty, Mayor Whittemore and members of the City Councils assembled at the City Building, and were conveyed in carriages to the stand on Franklin Square. The Strafford Guards, Major F.E. Rollins and Captain Lewis E. Tuttle in command, and the Sawyer Rifles, Lieutenants Thayer and McLaughlin in charge, under the direction of Major Frank H. Keenan of the First Regiment New Hampshire National Guards, marched to the depot where they awaited the arrival of the President’s train. Marshal Fogerty and his entire force were on hand early to assist in preserving order. Comrade John A. Goodwin and Captain George A. Swain had charge of firing the salute. The field piece was placed near the old High School building on the Cocheco Manufacturing Company’s land, and a salute of twenty-one guns was fired when the train rolled in. Mayer Arthur G. Whittemore, Ex-Governor Charles H. Sawyer and Thomas H. Dearborn received the President.

Carriages were in waiting, the first one was drawn by Nehemiah Randall, the occupants being President Roosevelt, Secretary Cortelyou, Major Whittemore and Ex-Governor C.H. Sawyer. On the box with Mr. Randall was a secret Service detective who accompanied the President.  

The line of march was down Third Street to the square. When the President alighted, those seated on the stand arose, and stood uncovered until he was seated. Mayor Whittemore introduced the President in a brief speech. The people greeted President Roosevelt with great applause. He spoke for ten minutes and pleased the crowd.

At the conclusion of the speech the party returned to the station where they were received by a delegation of Maine, where Governor Hill would meet the party in his home in Augusta. At 12.27 the train moved slowly out of the station. President Roosevelt stood on the rear end platform with his hat off, bowing to the people as the train went by. Cheer after cheer was given until he passed out of sight.
Theodore Roosevelt

Theodore Roosevelt

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