Oil and Water Part I

By Thomas F. Schwartz Arthur Beeby-Thompson, recognized only by a handful of people with knowledge of the oil industry, forged an early and lasting friendship with Herbert Hoover.  Beeby-Thompson’s 1961 autobiography has a forward written by Hoover.  Their friendship began in 1908 and continued until Hoover’s death in 1964.  It was based both upon their … Continue reading Oil and Water Part I

A Diva’s Death:  Tuberculosis during the Presidency of Herbert Hoover

By Thomas F. Schwartz COVID-19 symptoms—fever, chills, cough, night sweats, fatigue, and weight loss---bear a striking similarity to a disease that was prominent during the presidency of Herbert Hoover.  Tuberculosis [TB] has afflicted people from earliest recorded history.  It usually affects the lungs and was often referred to as consumption because of weight loss and … Continue reading A Diva’s Death:  Tuberculosis during the Presidency of Herbert Hoover

Hoover and 20th Century Presidents: Franklin Roosevelt

Picking up a thread dropped months ago, I resume my series on Hoover’s interactions with American Presidents.  Beginning with Franklin Roosevelt, connections get deep.  In fact, there have been book-length explorations of Hoover’s ties to FDR, Harry Truman and Dwight Eisenhower.  Rather than recap them, I suggest that those who want to know the rest … Continue reading Hoover and 20th Century Presidents: Franklin Roosevelt

Opening Day, Baseball and Tough Times

Working at home due to covid-19, I am trying to adjust to the new normal.  As a die-hard baseball fan, my adjustment may have been eased if I had baseball to watch.  Alas, public health and reasonable prudence dictates that there will be no major league baseball until this crisis has passed.  Sad, sobering and … Continue reading Opening Day, Baseball and Tough Times

West Union, Iowa Women’s Club Program, 1929

Anna Phillips, of West Union, Iowa, wrote to Mrs. Herbert Hoover on October 4, 1929: ‘We small town folk of Iowa, are trying eagerly to gather authentic information about some of the policies President Hoover is bringing to public attention….  Our Woman’s Club has an October 23rd program discussing Our President and His South American … Continue reading West Union, Iowa Women’s Club Program, 1929

Hoover and 20th Century Presidents: Calvin Coolidge

In honor of Presidents Day, I resume my series on Hoover’s interactions with American Presidents.  In our last episode, I left Hoover at Warren Harding’s death bed in August 1923.  After Harding died, Vice President Calvin Coolidge rose to the office of President.  Coolidge, described as a ‘Puritan in Babylon’ by one writer, could not … Continue reading Hoover and 20th Century Presidents: Calvin Coolidge

Movie: Tempest

Watching Movies on a Battleship

By Thomas F. Schwartz Having just watched the academy awards, it is appropriate to ask if Herbert Hoover was a film buff.  The simple answer is “yes!”  As Secretary of Commerce, Hoover helped promote the emerging U.S. film industry at home and abroad.  He was good friends with studio mogul Louis B. Mayer of MGM … Continue reading Watching Movies on a Battleship

United States Food Administration poster.

A Recipe Idea for Meatless Monday

By Thomas F. Schwartz As a previous blog post indicated, Americans who signed the pledge to conserve food were encouraged to forgo meat at one meal each day and on Tuesday, the entire day.  On Monday, supper was the designated meal to be meatless.  In Hoover’s day, breakfast was the first meal of the day … Continue reading A Recipe Idea for Meatless Monday

Herbert Hoover and the Gasparilla Pirate Festival

I cannot imagine Herbert Hoover, at any age or in any context, attending Mardi Gras or any such foofaraw. The man, the mien, and Mardi Gras beads just do not mix. My mind is not that plastic.  Evidently Florida Senator Duncan Upshaw Fletcher had a broader perspective. He wrote to Hoover on December 15, 1928, … Continue reading Herbert Hoover and the Gasparilla Pirate Festival

King Neptune Ceremony

The United States Navy has long stood on traditions.  These traditions reinforce the discipline needed to keep the crew’s morale high and their mission focused.  One such tradition is the King Neptune ceremony when crossing the equator aboard ship.  An experienced sailor dresses as Neptune; another cross-dresses as Queen Amphitrite, a third appears as Davy … Continue reading King Neptune Ceremony