State Dinner at the Hoover White House for the King and Queen of Siam

  On April 29, 1931 several precedents were set at a State Dinner at the White House.  The Hoovers hosted King Prajadhipok and Queen Rambai, monarchs of Siam.  This was the first State Dinner where an ‘Oriental monarch’ met with the President.  It was also the first time that the ruling monarch sat at the … Continue reading State Dinner at the Hoover White House for the King and Queen of Siam

Fish Story

by Matthew Schaefer While re-processing the personal papers of Senator Bourke Hickenlooper, I came across a folder labeled ‘Fish, 1954-1966.’  This was an odd title, and less descriptive than one would hope.  Being a curious cat, I further investigated this fishy folder.  It contained dozens of letters, newspaper clippings, receipts and photographs documenting Hickenlooper’s landing … Continue reading Fish Story

Lou Henry Hoover and Athletics for Women and Girls

by Matthew Schaefer Last month my wife and I attended a women’s basketball game at the University of Iowa.  We were delighted to learn that the game coincided with National Girls and Women in Sports Day, so that we’d get the commemorative t-shirts.  This led to a discussion of women’s athletics, Title IX, and the … Continue reading Lou Henry Hoover and Athletics for Women and Girls

National Proposal Day! What Next?

National Proposal Day!  What will they think of next?  I know from personal experience that my memory of proposing to my wife does not align with her memory of the event. No matter, we're still happily married 30+ years on.  The Hoovers have similarly unaligned stories regarding Herbert's proposal to Lou Henry.  Doubtless memory is … Continue reading National Proposal Day! What Next?

Lou Henry Hoover Plants a Girl Scout Metaphor

On February 26, 1936, Lou Henry Hoover offered some observations on Girl Scouting to leaders and council members at the Pacific Palisades meeting.  She was careful to explain that she was not there to deliver a speech or to lay down dictates, asserting: ‘I am just working on a problem like everyone else here.’ The … Continue reading Lou Henry Hoover Plants a Girl Scout Metaphor

Valentine’s Day Cards

Like many men [thousands? millions?], I approach Valentine’s Day with a measure of trepidation.  The weight of choosing the appropriate card grows heavier each year. Perhaps I’m losing strength to carry on the tradition.   Despite the thousands [millions?] of commercially available options, I struggle to find the card with the words that have the right … Continue reading Valentine’s Day Cards

Assessing Presidents at One Year

History serves as a reminder that all political times are tempestuous.  Ardent advocates champion their side of the cause no matter the year or the context.  The President’s recent State of the Union message ballyhooed the accomplishments of the first year of his administration—emphasizing successes and downplaying disappointments.  This is par for the course, drawn … Continue reading Assessing Presidents at One Year

Herbert Hoover and Fishing

  Herbert Hoover's lifelong passion for fishing is well-known.  For no other President has a biographer written a 350-page book subtitled, The Fishing President, as Hal Elliott Wert has done for Hoover. In this book, Wert describes Hoover's fishing exploits and expeditions from age 8 to age 88.  Young Bert Hoover pulled a ‘record’ twelve inch … Continue reading Herbert Hoover and Fishing

On the Passing of Lou Henry Hoover

Lou Henry Hoover died on Friday January 7, 1944 at the Waldorf-Astoria suite that she shared with her husband Herbert Hoover.  The following Monday more than 1500 mourners attended her memorial service at St. Bartholomew’s Episcopal Church.  There was no eulogy.  After the service, the Hoover family took the mortal remains of Lou Henry Hoover … Continue reading On the Passing of Lou Henry Hoover