FACT CHECK: Did Theodore Roosevelt Ride A Moose Through Water In 1912?

Elias Atienza | Senior Reporter

An image shared on Facebook claims to show former President Theodore Roosevelt riding a moose through a body of water in 1912.

Verdict: False

While the image does date back to 1912, it was created by a photography firm. It is not a genuine photo.

Fact Check:

Roosevelt, who served as the 26th U.S. president from 1901 to 1909, unsuccessfully ran for the presidency again in 1912 on the Bull Moose Party ticket, according to Britannica.

Social media users are sharing an image of Roosevelt appearing to ride a moose through a body of water in 1912 during the presidential race. “This is former US president (1901-1909) Teddy Roosevelt riding a moose (not Bullwinkle either) in the lake/river 1912 age 54. Tough dude,” reads the text accompanying the post. 

Roosevelt did not actually ride a moose, however. The picture was published in the now-defunct New York Tribune in 1912, according to the Houghton Library Blog, which can be found on Harvard University’s website. The image was created by the photography firm Underwood and Underwood as a triptych related to the presidential election. The blog points out the image had apparently been altered by cutting out a photo of Roosevelt riding a horse and pasting it onto a moose, noting a white streak between Roosevelt’s thigh and the water.

A triptych is an artwork made of three panels that can create a sequence, show different elements or resemble some type of theme, according to RiseArt. (RELATED: Did Teddy Roosevelt Say, ‘To Anger A Liberal, Tell Him The Truth’?)

The triptych targeted the 1912 presidential election alongside similar images of Howard Taft and Woodrow Wilson. Taft was depicted as riding an elephant to signify his position as the Republican Party presidential nominee, while Wilson was seen riding a donkey as he was the Democratic Party nominee, according to Wired.

Elias Atienza

Senior Reporter
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