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
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'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
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
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?
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
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?
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
By Thomas F. Schwartz In nineteenth-century America, the ruling family of the stage was the Booth family. John Wilkes Booth forever ruined the family reputation by assassinating President Abraham Lincoln. In the twentieth-century, the Barrymore family were the stars of stage and screen. Beginning with Maurice Barrymore and his three children, John, Lionel, and Ethel, … Continue reading Oscar Winner Ethel Barrymore’s Birthday Greeting from a former President
A love of books is rarely innate and usually the result of careful cultivation. Herbert Hoover described a moment when he was a teenager in Salem, Oregon when Miss Jennie Gray took an interest in his education. "She took me to the small library in the town," according to Hoover's published memoirs, "and borrowed for … Continue reading Hoover and Books