Theodore Roosevelt (1858–1919). Theodore Roosevelt’s Letters to His Children. 1919.

A Day with a Juggler

White House, Jan. 18, 1904.

Thursday and Friday there was a great deal of snow on the ground, and the weather was cold, so that Mother and I had two delightful rides up Rock Creek. The horses were clipped and fresh, and we were able to let them go along at a gallop, while the country was wonderfully beautiful.

To-day, after lunch, Mother took Ethel, Archie and Quentin, each with a friend, to see some most wonderful juggling and sleight of hand tricks by Kellar. I went along and was as much interested as any of the children, though I had to come back to my work in the office before it was half through. At one period Ethel gave up her ring for one of the tricks. It was mixed up with the rings of five other little girls, and then all six rings were apparently pounded up and put into a pistol and shot into a collection of boxes, where five of them were subsequently found, each tied around a rose. Ethel’s, however, had disappeared, and he made believe that it had vanished, but at the end of the next trick a remarkable bottle, out of which many different liquids had been poured, suddenly developed a delightful white guinea pig, squirming and kicking and looking exactly like Admiral Dewey, with around its neck Ethel’s ring, tied by a pink ribbon. Then it was wrapped up in a paper, handed to Ethel; and when Ethel opened it, behold, there was no guinea pig, but a bunch of roses with a ring.