Excerpts from "the first rough draft of history" as reported in The Washington Post on this date in the 20th century.
Theodore Roosevelt sought a third term in the White House after forming the Progressive, or "Bull Moose," party. The moniker came after the former president told a reporter, "I feel as strong as a bull moose." He proved it during his campaign when a deranged saloon keeper tried to assassinate him just before a speech in Milwaukee. Despite the bullet lodged in his chest, Roosevelt delivered the speech. Though he recovered from the wound, he lost the election. An excerpt from The Post of Oct. 15, 1912:
Col. Roosevelt was shot and wounded in the left breast as he was leaving the Gilpatrick Hotel for the Auditorium, where he was to make an address. His assailant was John Schrank, apparently a fanatic on the third-term question, whose home is 370 East Tenth street, New York.
Col. Roosevelt, who at first did not know he was wounded, insisted upon going to the Auditorium, where he spoke for more than an hour. After the speech he was taken, weak from loss of blood, to the Emergency Hospital, where, after physicians unsuccessfully probed for the bullet, he submitted to an X-ray examination.
The examination revealed the bullet in the flesh at the breast. After the X-ray photograph was finished, the physicians announced that the colonel was feeling well and that the wound was not serious.
Col. Roosevelt will be taken to Chicago at 3 o'clock tomorrow morning, where Dr. Bevan will operate for the removal of the bullet.
Col. Roosevelt had just stepped into an automobile when the would-be assassin pushed his way through the crowd in the street and fired. Col. Albert H. Martin, who was standing in the car with the colonel, leaped onto the man's shoulders and bore him to the ground, and prevented a second shot.
Henry F. Cochems, chairman of the speakers' bureau of the Progressive party, captured the would-be assassin, and it required the services of four policemen to keep him from being dealt with summarily.
The colonel asked to have the man brought to him, and when the would-be assassin was asked why he fired the shot, no reply was offered.
Col. Roosevelt stood up in his carriage, waved the crowd away, and started for the Auditorium. ...
A written proclamation found in the clothing of the man who did the shooting reads: . . . "In a dream I saw President McKinley sit up in a monk's attire, in whom I recognized Theodore Roosevelt. The President said: `This is my murderer; avenge my death.' ...
"Before the Almighty God, I swear this above writing is nothing but the truth."
Another note found in the man's pocket reads: ...
"Let every third termer be regarded as a traitor to the American cause. Let it be the right and duty of every citizen to forcibly remove a third termer. Never let a third-term party emblem appear on the official ballot.
"I am willing to die for my country. God has called me to be his instrument, so help me God.
"(Signed) INNOCENT GUILTY"