ROOT, Elihu (1845-1937)
Senate Years of Service: 1909-1915

ROOT, ELIHU, a Senator from New York; born in Clinton, Oneida County, N.Y., February 15, 1845; attended the common schools; graduated from Hamilton College, Clinton, N.Y., in 1864; taught in the Rome (N.Y.) Academy in 1865; graduated from the law school of the University of the City of New York in 1867; admitted to the bar in the same year and commenced practice in New York City; United States attorney for the southern district of New York 1883-1885; delegate to the State constitutional convention in 1894; appointed Secretary of War by President William McKinley 1899-1904; appointed Secretary of State by President Theodore Roosevelt 1905-1909; elected as a Republican to the United States Senate and served from March 4, 1909, to March 3, 1915; declined to be a candidate for reelection; chairman, Committee on Expenditures in the Department of State (Sixty-first Congress), Committee on Industrial Expositions (Sixty-second Congress); resumed the practice of law in New York City; author; president of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace 1910-1925; awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for 1912; president of The Hague Tribunal of Arbitration between Great Britain, France, Spain, and Portugal, concerning church property, in 1913; president of the New York State constitutional convention in 1915; appointed by President Woodrow Wilson to be Ambassador Extraordinary at the head of a special diplomatic mission from the United States to Russia in 1917; Commissioner Plenipotentiary to the Conference on Limitation of Armament at Washington, D.C., 1921-1922; member of the Committee of International Jurists, which, on invitation of the Council of the League of Nations, reported the plan for a new Permanent Court of International Justice in 1921; died in New York City, February 7, 1937; interment in Hamilton College Cemetery, Clinton, N.Y.

American Academy of Arts and Letters
New York, NY
Papers: 1913-1935. 100 items. Correspondence chiefly relating to the National Institute of Arts and Letters and the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

Columbia University
Oral History Project
New York, NY
Oral History: Discussed in Carnegie Corporation project, 1966-1970, and in two interviews.

Columbia University
Rare Book and Manuscript Library
New York, NY
Papers: Correspondence in William McMurtrie Speer papers, 1880-1936; Carnegie Corporation of New York records, 1911-1977; Edward Morse Shephard papers, 1837-1914; Jay family papers, 1828-1943; Charles Evans Hughes papers, 1914-1930; and 150 letters from Root in Willard Bartlett papers, 1855-1924.

Cornell University
Rare Books and Manuscript Collections
Ithaca, NY
Papers: Correspondence in Albert T. Wilkinson collection, 1854-1908; Commission to the Philippine Islands, State Department records, 1899-1900, on 1 microfilm reel; Civil Service Reform Association records, 1880-1947; Jacob Gould Schurman papers, 1878-1986; Lena Lillian Hill Severence papers, 1903-1916; Dorothy Whitney Straight Elmhirst papers, 1887-1978 (bulk 1887-1926); and Bristow Adams papers, 1853-1970 (bulk 1862-1957).

Georgetown University
Special Collections
Washington, DC
Papers: Correspondence in Edythe Patten Corbin papers, 1898-1960.

Hamilton and Kirkland Colleges
Burke Library
Clinton, NY
Papers: Business and personal correspondence in Elihu Root family papers, 1755-1910. 7 cubic feet.

Indiana University
Lilly Library
Bloomington, IN
Papers: Correspondence in Charles W. Fairbanks papers, 1819-1939.

Library of Congress
Manuscript Division
Washington, DC
Papers: 1863-1937 (bulk 1899-1915). 87 linear feet. Chiefly official correspondence, together with reports, memoranda, notes, speeches, subject files, financial papers, calendar and appointment books, invitations, and printed matter documenting all aspects of his public career. Finding aid.
Additional Papers: Correspondence in the Melvin W. Fuller papers, 1794-1949; Francis Bowler Keene papers, 1867-1975; Theodore Roosevelt papers, 1780-1962; and Stanley Washburn papers, 1912-1945. Also 600 items including transcripts of conversations (1930-1936) between Root and members of his family concerning his ancestry, biography, and such topics as the League of Nations, New Deal, prohibition, U.S. Department of State, Washington Disarmament Conference, and World Court; speeches (1894-1925); articles (1929-1936); and clippings in the Emily Stewart collection of Elihu Root material, 1885-1959.

Massachusetts Historical Society
Boston, MA
Papers: Ca. 20 letters (1887-1928) in various collections.

New Jersey Historical Society
Newark, NJ
Papers: Correspondence in Joseph P. Bradley papers, 1836-1937.

New York Public Library
New York, NY
Papers: 1899. 3 volumes. Telegrams and letters relating to his appointment as secretary of war. Also in Charles Ranlett Flint papers, 1869-1930 (bulk 1885-1915).

New York State Library
Manuscripts and Special Collections
Albany, NY
Papers: 1912-1913. 3 letters.

Pierpont Morgan Library
New York, NY
Papers: 1900-1932. 3 items.

Franklin D. Roosevelt Library
Hyde Park, NY
Papers: Correspondence in Roosevelt's papers as governor of New York, 1929-1932; and John Henry Livingston papers, 1910-1937.

Stanford University Libraries
Special Collections
Stanford, CA
Papers: In John W. Shenk papers, 1900-1935; Elmer E. Robinson collection, 1765-1950; Francis B. Loomis papers, 1897-1939; Stephen Mallory White papers, 1871-1901; William Rufus Shafter papers, 1862-1945 (bulk 1862-1904), on 7 microfilm reels; and David Starr Jordan papers, 1861-1964.

Syracuse University
George Arents Research Library
Syracuse, NY
Papers: 1874-1935. 127 letters. Include discussions of national and state Republican party politics.
Additional Papers: Correspondence in Levi P. Morton papers, 1860-1912; and Paul Richards collection, 1898-1913 (bulk 1910-1913).

University of Michigan
Bentley Historical Library
Ann Arbor, MI
Papers: Correspondence in Jesse Siddall Reeves papers, 1853-1942; Ephraim Shay papers, 1861-1914; Harry Burns Hutchins papers, 1879-1930; Henry Bourne Joy papers, 1883-1937; Edwin Denby papers, 1845-1846 and 1880-1929; Junius Emery Beal papers, 1882-1946; Frank Haycock Burton papers, 1890-1927; and Charles Ruggles papers, 1912-1925.

Virginia Historical Society
Richmond, VA
Papers: Miscellaneous items. Finding aid.

Yale University Libraries
Divinity School Library
New Haven, CT
Papers: Correspondence in John R. Mott papers, 1813-1978. Finding aid.

Yale University Libraries
Manuscripts and Archives
New Haven, CT
Papers: In Whitelaw Reid papers, 1865-1923, available on microfilm; Anson Phelps Stokes family papers, 1761-1960 (bulk 1892-1958); Alexander Stewart Webb papers, 1818-1930; Thomas Collier Platt papers, 1851-1915; Charles Seymour papers, 1912-1963; Wetmore family papers, 1695-1919; Charles Dewey Hilles papers, 1885-1955; Paul Moritz Warburg papers, 1904-1932; Frederic Collin Walcott papers, 1850-1948; James Rockwell Sheffield papers, 1768-1969; Frost family papers, 1710-1923; and Henry Lewis Stimson papers, 1846-1966.
Research Libraries Information Network In addition to the institutions listed above, items are also cataloged in collections at: American Philosophical Society Library, Philadelphia, PA; Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society, Buffalo, NY; Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH; Harvard Business School, Baker Library, Boston, MA; Historical Society of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA; Milwaukee Public Library, Milwaukee, WI; New York University Archives, New York, NY; Radcliffe College, Schlesinger Library, Cambridge, MA; Rutgers University Libraries, New Brunswick, NJ; Smithsonian Institution, Archives of American Art, Washington, DC; State Historical Society of Wisconsin, Madison, WI; University of Iowa Libraries, Iowa City, IA; Virginia State Library and Archives, Richmond, VA; and Winterthur Museum, Winterthur, DE.

  • Bacon, Robert, and James Brown Scott, eds. Addresses on Government and Citizenship [by Elihu Root]. 1916. Reprint. Freeport, NY: Books for Libraries Press, 1969.
  • ___, eds. Addresses on International Subjects by Elihu Root. 1916. Reprint. Freeport, NY: Books for Libraries Press, 1969.
  • ___, eds. Latin America and the United States: Addresses by Elihu Root. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1917.
  • ___, eds. Men and Policies: Addresses [by Elihu Root]. 1925. Reprint. Freeport, NY: Books for Libraries Press, 1968.
  • ___, eds. The Military and Colonial Policy of the United States: Addresses and Reports [by Elihu Root]. 1916. Reprint. New York: AMS Press, 1970.
  • ___, eds. Miscellaneous Addresses [by Elihu Root]. 1917. Reprint. Port Washington, NY: Kennikat Press, 1966.
  • Dubin, Martin David. "Elihu Root and the Advocacy of a League of Nations, 1914-1917.'' Western Political Quarterly 19 (September 1966): 439-55.
  • Jessup, Philip Caryl. Elihu Root. 2 vols. 1938. Reprint. Hamden, CT: Archon Books, 1964.
  • Leopold, Richard William. Elihu Root and the Conservative Tradition. Boston: Little, Brown & Co., 1954.
  • Root, Grace Cogswell, comp. Fathers and Sons (1924-1937). Clinton, NY: n.p., 1971.
  • Root, Elihu. The Citizen's Part in Government and Experiments in Government and the Essentials of the Constitution. New York: Arno Press, 1974. A reprint of 2 works, The Citizen's Part in Government (1907) and Experiments in Government and the Essentials of the Constitution (1913).
  • ___. "A Requisite for the Success of Popular Diplomacy.'' Foreign Affairs 1 (September 15, 1922): 3-10.
  • ___. The United States and the War, The Mission to Russia. Edited by Robert Bacon and James Brown Scott. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1918.
  • Schambra, William Arthur. "Elihu Root, the Constitution, and the Election of 1912.'' Ph.D. dissertation, Northern Illinois University, 1983.
  • Zimmerman, Warren. First Great Triumph: How Five Americans Made Their County a World Power. New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2002.