An Eclectic Taste in Music: Herbert Hoover’s Favorite Tunes

By Thomas F. Schwartz President Hoover and First Lady Lou Hoover at a dinner at the Waldorf Astoria, Feb. 12, 1933. A common approach to short biography today is to provide a series of questions asking the interview subject to list their favorite foods, movies, music, etc.  The archivists are frequently asked these same questions … Continue reading An Eclectic Taste in Music: Herbert Hoover’s Favorite Tunes

A Vacation in Cairo

By Thomas F. Schwartz Much of the familiarity the Hoovers had with Egypt came from their many journeys through the Suez Canal going to and from Australia.  Like train travel where you see landscapes unfold as you travel along the tracks, their understanding of Egypt was initially what they witnessed from the ship traveling through … Continue reading A Vacation in Cairo

Valentine’s Day Cards – The Rest of the Story

A valentine from the Hoover collections. Last year, I wrote on the Valentine’s Day Cards received by President Hoover (  I was surprised not only by the variety of cards in circulation in the early 1930s, but also by the large number of card manufacturers.  Growing up when and where I did, I assumed that … Continue reading Valentine’s Day Cards – The Rest of the Story

Movie Review – Snow White

Just over 80 years ago, Walt Disney released Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, the first feature length cel animated film, which quickly became both a critical and commercial success.  While still popular today, Snow White may seem somewhat quaint compared with more recent animated films, but at the time it was truly revolutionary.  Nothing … Continue reading Movie Review – Snow White

Stanford-Cal Big Game

  While every region has its natural collegiate rivals in football—think Auburn-Alabama, Michigan-Ohio State, Texas-Oklahoma—only one rivalry comes complete with capital letters.  The Stanford-Cal Big Game [always capitalized by the cognoscenti] dates back to 1892, when Walter Camp coached the Stanford team to a 14-10 victory over their rivals across the bay.  As a student, … Continue reading Stanford-Cal Big Game

Are You Ready for some Football?—College Coaches’ Mythic Edition

Like millions of Americans, I am captivated by the autumnal pull of college football.  The crisp cool air, the turning leaves, the thump of pad upon pad, the siren call of homecoming at the alma mater all weave their magic. I spend many Saturday hours inside watching the local heroes on the Big-10 network.   … Continue reading Are You Ready for some Football?—College Coaches’ Mythic Edition

Hoover Ball Rejuvenated

Part 3 By Matthew Schaeffer After Herbert Hoover left the White House on March 4, 1933, Hoover Ball disappeared from the public awareness.  Clearly Franklin Roosevelt, suffering from the lingering impact of polio, was not going to throw a six pound ball over a net.  Like Calvin Coolidge’s mechanical horse, Hoover ball was consigned to … Continue reading Hoover Ball Rejuvenated

The End of the First Hoover Ball Era

Part 2 By Matthew Schaeffer Visitors to the Herbert Hoover Museum will find nearly seven hundred artifacts on display to tell his life story.  There is an entire exhibit case dedicated to documenting the Hoovers’ time in the White House.  It contains scores of artifacts, and it can be overwhelming.  One artifact that escaped my … Continue reading The End of the First Hoover Ball Era

Hoover Ball Genesis

Part 1 By Matthew Schaeffer The health of the President of the United States is often newsworthy.  President Trump’s height and weight made recent headlines.  Obama’s smoking drew public interest.  Clinton’s affinity for eating fast food, sometimes while dressed for jogging, was worth a news photo.  I would argue that the American public cares more … Continue reading Hoover Ball Genesis

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