William H. Taft 1909 Typed Letter Signed as President-Elect

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27th President.  Typed letter signed (TLS) “Wm H. Taft” as President-Elect, February 18, 1909, personal “William Howard Taft / Cincinnati, Ohio” stationery, to Hamilton Holt in New York, in full:

According to my present plans, I shall attend the dinner to Mr. Root on the evening of February 26th.  I have not written out anything, and I don’t know that I shall be able to do so.  I may have to trust to the inspiration of the moment.  I am not sure that Mrs. Taft will be with me, for I think she intends to return to Washington earlier than the 26th.

I have received your letter enclosing the two ticket.

The dinner was hosted by the Peace Society of New York and was attended by hundreds in one of biggest social events of the decade.  Root served as Secretary of War under William McKinley and Theodore Roosevelt and then Secretary of State during Theodore Roosevelt’s second term.  Taft succeeded him as Sec. of War. With Roosevelt’s term ending, Root was elected to the Senate. Holt was editor of the New York newspaper The Independent and later president of Rollins College in Florida.

Taft was elected as President on November 3, over Democratic challenger William Jennings Bryan.  RARE letterhead and time period for autographed Taft letters.