Biography of U.S. President Woodrow Wilson Part 12 Quotes from Wilson

About the United States President Woodrow Wilson, biography and a collection of quotes from Wilson.


28th President



"And let me again remind you that it is only by working with an energy which is almost superhuman and which looks to uninterested spectators like insanity that we can accomplish anything worth the achievement."--Undergraduate essay, "The Ideal Statesman"

"Tolerance is an admirable intellectual gift; but it is worth little in politics. Politics is a war of causes; a joust of principles."--Wilson at age 21

"I have a sense of power in dealing with men collectively which I do not always feel in dealing with them singly.... One feels no sacrifice of pride necessary in courting the favor of an assembly of men such as he would have to make in seeking to please one man."--Wilson at age 27

"The business of government is to organize the common interest against the special interests."--1912

"Segregation is not humiliating but a benefit, and ought to be so regarded by you gentlemen. The only harm that will come will be if you cause the colored people of the country to think it is a humiliation."--President Wilson to a delegation of black leaders, November, 1913

"We are glad, now that we see the facts with no veil of false pretense about them, to fight thus for the ultimate peace of the world and for the liberation of its peoples, the German peoples included; for the rights of nations great and small and the privilege of men everywhere to choose their way of life and of obedience. The world must be made safe for democracy....It is a fearful thing to lead this great peaceful people into war, into the most terrible and disastrous of all wars, civilization itself seeming to be in the balance. But the right is more precious than peace, and we shall fight for the things which we have always carried nearest our hearts."--Declaration of war against Germany, Apr. 2, 1917

"Better a thousand times to go down fighting than to dip your colors to dishonorable compromise."--Wilson to his wife, 1919

"My constant embarrassment is to restrain the emotions that are inside of me. You may not believe it, but I sometimes feel like the fire from a far from extinct volcano, and if the lava does not seem to spill over it is because you are not high enough to see into the basin and see the caldron boil."--Comment at presidential press conference

"If I said what I thought about those fellows in Congress, it would take a piece of asbestos two inches thick to hold it."--On Senate opponents of the Versailles Treaty, Aug. 12, 1919

"My fellow citizens, I believe in Divine Providence. If I did not I would go crazy."--Sept. 17, 1919, one week before his collapse

"Again and again mothers who lost their sons in France have come to me, and, taking my hand, have not only shed tears upon it, but they have added, `God bless you, Mr. President!" Why should they pray God to bless me? I advised the Congress to create the situation that led to the death of their sons. I ordered their sons overseas. I consented to their sons' being put in the most difficult part of the battle line, where death was certain...Why should they weep upon my hand and call down the blessings of God upon me? Because they believe that their boys died for something that vastly transcends any of the immediate and palpable objects of the war. They believe, and rightly believe, that their sons saved the liberty of the world."--Speech in Pueblo, Colo., September, 1919

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