What Was Photography Like During Theodore Roosevelt’s Era?

Photography has contributed a lot, whether you are an individual or even running a company. It was used for hobbyists who enjoyed Photography or those people who used it for a living. Companies slowly integrated it to use it as a form of advertisement for their products or to introduce them to the public. But what we often overlook is how Photography was like during the Former President Theodore Roosevelt’s Era. Photography has been part of former U.S Presidents since 1843. They were always tasked during public speeches and scheduled photoshoots. It all changed when Theodore Roosevelt served as a nexus for several factors to its change. Presidential Photography began with Former President John Quincy Adams last 1843, and most of the time, Photography just consisted of their Presidential Portrait.

Theodore Roosevelt’s Bully Pulpit

Roosevelt saw the light with the use of this Photography, not only to show his speeches and presidential portraits but to provide a vital role for his Political Agenda during his term. People were starting to consume what the media were feeding them, and with the fast-rising of technological advancement, Theodore saw this as a great opportunity to push this political maneuver and sell it to the American People.

American People started to see more of the life of the President and even the First Family. The Photographs also showcased Presidential events, trips, and other sides of his speeches. This actually became a small medium of the people towards the President, thus putting a sense of trust in the American People.

The Political Agenda

As Roosevelt started using Photography as a key part of his Presidency, it actually worked wonders for his Administration since it opened a lot of opportunities in terms of working on relations with foreign countries and alike. It allowed him to be seen greeting a foreign dignitary (Prince Henry of Prussia), attending and mourning with people in a Funeral at Canton, Ohio. There were times that the President was seen at a Cathedral in Panama with their President, Manuel Amador.

It showcased a whole lot of things for the people, and this was surely a new thing for them since it’s just an article in a newspaper. But now, people can actually see images of the Presidents agenda on a day-to-day basis.

Foreign Relations

Theodore’s agenda came at the right time since he was able to secure ties with some of the neighboring countries. Roosevelt helped to bring settlement to the Russo-Japanese war in 1905, where it showed the two nations signing a treaty. Roosevelt received a Noble Peace Prize for this humanitarian effort.

Roosevelt’s Post Presidency

Roosevelt was still very active in front of the camera even after his Presidency concluded. He was seen flying on a plane, making him the first President to ride an airplane. Cameras still followed him around since his activities for the public never stopped. It consisted of opening a Dam, delivering speeches, and conducting lectures in foreign countries as well.

Post Theodore Photography

Up to this date, the newly inducted Administration still uses the same tactic that Roosevelt started. Presidential Photographers adopted this change and improved with their shots as time went by. Now with social media ahead of us, we can easily see a glimpse of what it’s like inside the White House or what it’s like to be part of the First Family. This did become a thing since people are instilled with that sense of trust when they see those kinds of photos from the President and his day-to-day activities. A President’s life can be labeled as the most secured man on earth, but with this advancement, they are providing the people, they were able to keep it an open book for most of us. It could be either good or bad, depending on how the people see it, but one thing is for sure, it helped build a longer bridge for the President to reach out to his people and with a percentage responding positively to this kind of approach, people wouldn’t mind keeping this kind of public relation activities in the near future as well.

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