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

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

Stanford-Cal Big Game

by Matthew Schaefer 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 … Continue reading Stanford-Cal Big Game

Are You Ready for Some Football?

by Matthew Schaefer From the time he was a Stanford student, Hoover was a fan of football.  In his memoirs, Hoover plays up his role as the financial manager of the Stanford football team that won ‘The Big Game’ against Cal in ’94.   The Stanford eleven no doubt benefited by the coaching prowess of Walter … Continue reading Are You Ready for Some Football?

Home Improvements at Camp Rapidan

by Matthew Schaefer Even before entering the White House, the Hoovers determined that they would need to escape Washington DC’s notorious summer heat and humidity.  Given their love of the outdoors, the Hoovers’ purchase and development of a summer camp on the Rapidan River in Virginia came as no surprise.  The camp was in the … Continue reading Home Improvements at Camp Rapidan

Herbert Hoover a Superhero?

On August 10, 1962, Herbert Hoover celebrated his 88th birthday by attending the dedication and opening of the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library -Museum in West Branch, Iowa. Accompanied by friend and former president Harry S. Truman, Hoover fondly reminisced about growing up in West Branch and celebrating the Fourth of July with firecrackers purchased by … Continue reading Herbert Hoover a Superhero?

Caribbean Vacation

In March, 1931, Herbert Hoover decided to take a Caribbean cruise. He had taken only one brief vacation during the first two years of his Presidency, and badly needed some rest. The battleship Arizona had just finished a two year overhaul and was scheduled to make a "shakedown" cruise off the east coast, so the … Continue reading Caribbean Vacation