Lou Hoover and Belgian Lace

By Thomas F. Schwartz One of the lesser known aspects of the Commission for Relief in Belgium (CRB) dealt with support of the Belgian lace makers.  In 1915, a committee of Belgian women requested assistance for the importation of linen thread and needles as well as cash advances to keep the cottage industry of lace … Continue reading Lou Hoover and Belgian Lace

And the War Came:  Lou Hoover and the Great War

By Thomas F. Schwartz Lou Hoover was a prodigious letter writer.  Her correspondence provides great insight into both the life of her husband as well as her own activities.  Lou presents a graphic description of their efforts to assist stranded Americans in London at the beginning of World War I in a letter written to … Continue reading And the War Came:  Lou Hoover and the Great War

Lou Hoover on Women and Politics

By Thomas F. Schwartz Lou Hoover never voiced an interest in running for political office.  Her philosophy of “lead from behind” preferred a role as quiet mentor and not outspoken leader.  This did not prevent her from voicing her opinion on the larger role that women play in leadership and governance.  Speaking before a gathering … Continue reading Lou Hoover on Women and Politics

The Interstate Highway System, Dwight Eisenhower and Lou Henry Hoover

Eisenhower Interstate Sign Attentive drivers will notice that the highways connecting America are named the Dwight Eisenhower Interstate Highway System. This is a nod to Eisenhower’s commitment to securing passage of the 1956 Interstate Highway Act, a concrete legacy of his presidency.  When discussing improvements to infrastructure today, some policy wonks invoke Ike, calling for … Continue reading The Interstate Highway System, Dwight Eisenhower and Lou Henry Hoover

Lou Henry Hoover’s White House History

In 1930, First Lady Lou Henry Hoover asked one of her secretaries, Dare Stark McMullin, to compile some information about the historic furnishings in the White House.  What began as a simple list grew into a massive project to document the history of the White House itself and the art and furnishings of each Administration.   … Continue reading Lou Henry Hoover’s White House History

Lou Hoover Adding Bricks to the Foundation of League of Women Voters

by Matthew Schaefer While Lou Henry Hoover did not campaign for suffrage, she did actively support the League of Women Voters once women gained suffrage.  She spoke at Bryn Mawr College, one of the ‘Seven Sisters’ women’s colleges, in April 1920, shortly before suffrage passed. Lou was invited by the League of Women Voter's  president, … Continue reading Lou Hoover Adding Bricks to the Foundation of League of Women Voters

Lou Hoover and the Bandeirantes of Brazil

Extroverted by nature, Lou Hoover likely enjoyed the Latin American trip more than her husband Herbert.  As the tour entered it final port of call in South America, Rio de Janeiro, Lou made time to visit with the Federacao des Bandeirantes, a Brazilian Girl Scout troop.  Given Hoover’s deep and long involvement with the Girl … Continue reading Lou Hoover and the Bandeirantes of Brazil

Lou Hoover and ‘The American Girl’

Lou Hoover was in the midst of her second tenure as President of the Girl Scouts in October 1936 when she received a letter from Jean Magee.  Magee was a high school junior tasked with writing a term paper on ‘The American Girl.’  She judged Lou Hoover to be the best authority on the subject. … Continue reading Lou Hoover and ‘The American Girl’

Lou Hoover and the Early Days of World War I

London, 1914, American Women's Committee. Lou Hoover is sitting at the table, the fourth one from the right. Last month we made a presentation to our local Questers group. They are big fans of Lou Hoover, so they asked us to speak on Lou and relief work during World War I.  I felt that we’d … Continue reading Lou Hoover and the Early Days of World War I

Tangible and Intangible Uses of Historical Knowledge

Lou Henry Hoover sitting at the "Monroe Desk" which was reproduced for the White House collection. ca 1931 By Thomas F. Schwartz Another of Lou Henry Hoover’s undeveloped musings addresses the problem of people who only mine the past for practical applications in the present.  A deeper understanding of the context that gave rise to … Continue reading Tangible and Intangible Uses of Historical Knowledge