Persistence Prevails When All Else Fails

By Thomas F. Schwartz, Director, Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum Paraskevidekatriaphobia is the fear of Friday the 13th.  It was given new meaning when we received word to close the museum and library to the public until public health officials determined that the coronavirus spread through public transmission had abated.  This decision was not … Continue reading Persistence Prevails When All Else Fails

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’

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

Hoover, and Other Heads of the American State

My office mate and I had a conversation about Ozymandias, a poem by Percy Bysshe Shelley more than two hundred years ago.  Fragments of the poem rattled in my memory; my colleague knew it by heart.  Lines that stuck with me: ‘And on the pedestal these words appear/ ‘My name is Ozymandias, king of kings/ … Continue reading Hoover, and Other Heads of the American State

Gifts to the Hoovers

As the Hoovers toured Latin America, they were feted with lavish dinners and receptions by heads of state and other dignitaries.  At these events the Hoovers were usually given a memento to mark the occasion.  By the time the Hoovers reached Chile, these mementos had grown so numerous that it was decided to ship them … Continue reading Gifts to the Hoovers

The Good Will Tour – a Journalist’s Adventure

Rodney Dutcher was one of 27 journalists who accompanied President-Elect Herbert Hoover on his "Good Will Tour" of Latin America in November and December 1928.  Dutcher was a bureau manager and political columnist for the Newspaper Enterprise Association, one of the big news syndicates that served 850 U.S. newspapers.  As published for a much smaller … Continue reading The Good Will Tour – a Journalist’s Adventure

Hoover’s Latin American Trip and the Press

Shortly before his departure on the Latin American goodwill trip, Herbert Hoover wrote to Elihu Root: ‘As usual, it is very difficult to deal with the press in these matters. The youngsters who are detailed to inform the American public seem to think they have a divine right to invent something sensational each day and … Continue reading Hoover’s Latin American Trip and the Press

“Viva Hoover” exhibit – but what’s that thing that looks like a clock?

A number of visitors to the temporary exhibit "Viva Hoover!  The 1928 Goodwill Tour"have asked about one of the large photographs of the battleship USS Maryland -- what is that clock-like thing on the mast? It's a device called a "range clock," and you will see it in pictures of battleships from World War I … Continue reading “Viva Hoover” exhibit – but what’s that thing that looks like a clock?