The Dalai Lama gave this buddha statuette to Theodore Roosevelt through the U.S. Minister to China William Woodville Rockhill. In June of 1908 Rockhill met with the Dalai Lama regarding peace between Russia and China. In corresponding with Rockhill, Theodore Roosevelt wondered what kind of gift he should give to the Dalai Lama in return. On August 1, 1908 TR wrote to Rockhill, "I have not the vaguest idea of that the Tale Lama would like. I sent the Pope a copy of my books. It is just possible that he glanced at the outside of the cover of one, but I do not know that the Tale Lama would even care to do as much as this. Will you let me know?"