Modern Hoover Myths: Part 5

Joseph Green, one of Hoover's devoted CRB men. Most individuals appreciate complements on a job well done and welcome their superiors inquiring about their level of satisfaction at work and in family life. Critics who have painted Hoover as cold and aloof also claim he didn’t like to complement subordinates because it removed the spotlight … Continue reading Modern Hoover Myths: Part 5

Modern Hoover Myths: Part 4

President Hoover, in formal attire, greets President elect Herrera of Columbia, June 2, 1930. (HHPL-M image #31-1930-45) Critics have often claimed that Hoover lacked the social graces required of a President. What constitutes required “social graces” of any President is subjective. One of America’s greatest presidents, Abraham Lincoln, was criticized for the vestiges of his … Continue reading Modern Hoover Myths: Part 4

Modern Hoover Myths: Part 3

A jovial Herbert Hoover at Bohemian Grove, 1941. (HHPL-M image 31-1941-a49) Individuals who are inclined to be introverts in public are often assumed to be humorless. Funny people usually command the center of attention not only with their wit but larger than life personalities. The characterization that Hoover lacked a sense of humor is baseless … Continue reading Modern Hoover Myths: Part 3

Modern Hoover Myths: Part 2

Herbert Hoover in Poland, 1946. Science fiction depicts certain aliens and robots as possessing no emotion and basing their actions entirely on logic.  The popular television series Star Trek introduced Vulcans who evolved replacing emotions with logic.  Herbert Hoover was neither a Vulcan nor a robot, but writers have often depicted him as lacking any … Continue reading Modern Hoover Myths: Part 2

Modern Hoover Myths: Part I

Former President Herbert Hoover shaking hands, 1940 Popular histories are meant to provide a broad audience access to history that is not written exclusively for an academic audience. As such, the writing tends to be livelier with numerous anecdotes that are memorable but might lack veracity. Footnotes, that are intended to keep academic writings honest … Continue reading Modern Hoover Myths: Part I

Hoover and the Charge of Treason

Popular history reaches a wide audience and often inspires readers to delve more deeply into a topic. All history contains some misinformation. In most cases, it is based on sources that have since been replaced with writings that benefit from new primary materials that better inform the topic. Bill Bryson’s widely read One Summer: America … Continue reading Hoover and the Charge of Treason

Hoover and Postwar Humor

President Harry Truman and former President Herbert Hoover, 06/17/1947.(HHPL-M image #31-1947-30). The defeat of the Axis Powers in World War II did not usher an era of peace.  Rather, decades of unease between the United States and the Soviet Union characterized the postwar world.  This period would be termed the Cold War—the absence of direct … Continue reading Hoover and Postwar Humor

The Use of “American Individualism” in Popular Culture

Cadillac radiator badge, ca. 1922 National Museum of American History #TR.325528.261. Three months after the publication of Herbert Hoover's American Individualism, Herbert Howard Rice, president and general manager of the Cadillac Motor Car Company, dedicated a plaque in honor of the Le Sieur Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac. Born March 5, 1658, and founder of … Continue reading The Use of “American Individualism” in Popular Culture

Harold H. Fisher’s Letter of Condolence on the death of Herbert Hoover

Hoover and friends at his 75th birthday celebration, Stanford University. Left to right: Harold Fisher, Ray Lyman Wilbur, Edgar Rickard, Herbert Hoover. (HHPL-M image 31-1949-37) The death of former President Herbert Hoover on October 20, 1964 elicited condolences from world leaders and ordinary people.  Some of the most moving letters to Hoover’s sons came from … Continue reading Harold H. Fisher’s Letter of Condolence on the death of Herbert Hoover

Critics of American Individualism

First edition of Herbert Hoover's American Individualism No author is without critics and Herbert Hoover’s American Individualism had many, some thoughtful and others simply dismissive.  As both critics and supporters alike point out, Hoover’s musings are not a systematic treatment of the topic.  Some find Hoover’s statements impressionistic while others see them as a portal … Continue reading Critics of American Individualism