Quick – tell me something you know about Herbert Hoover. Um, me too – couldn’t come up with much. Not to worry. I’ll help you out with some info in case you get asked at your next cocktail party. Here’s what we learned at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Museum in West Bend IA, our last big stop on our way home.wp-1477663349493.jpgIf you Google unpopular or worst President, Hoover’s name will be near the top, if not in the top spot. But, he had a pretty interesting road to the White House – he was orphaned at an early age, separated from his siblings, and raised by a variety of relatives. His Stanford degree in Mining Engineering took him to live in China and Australia, where he earned the rather astonishing (to me, anyway) salary of $10,000 in 1898.wp-1477663341240.jpg His rise in the political world came in 1914, when he was recruited to lead the effort to relieve famine in Belgium. Later, his popularity soared as Secretary of Commerce (he was often referred to as Secretary of Everything).wp-1477662753953.jpg In the 1928 election, he crushed his Democratic opponent Alfred E Smith (444/87 electoral votes).

Then came October 1929. Banks crashing, nearly 25% unemployment, widespread dispair. Hoover declined to provide direct assistance to families, relying instead on voluntary efforts, “A voluntary deed is infinitely more precious to our national ideas and spirit than a thousandfold poured from the Treasury.” He didn’t stand a chance in the 1932 election. Roosevelt trounced Hoover. (472/59 electoral votes) Back to private life. wp-1477663153688.jpg He briefly emerged in 1946 to assist Truman with global famine relief.

Fun facts? He was one of only two US Presidents to donate their salary. (Yep, Kennedy was the other). He abolished the White House stables, and mothballed the Presidential yacht upon entering office. He did propose a $50/month pension for all Americans over age 65, but that idea never went anywhere. Seems evident that he suffered from a lack of political clout, combined with the true passion to make things happen.

The Museum and surrounding area was interesting – I really liked the sculptures that are shown in the photos. There weren’t many folksy or fun things in the Museum, but I did enjoy this Life Mask, created in 1919.wp-1477662712138.jpgWe’ve now visited all the Presidential Museums but four – Nixon (we went there this spring, but it was closed for renovation), Bush, Bush, and Carter. Hope to see the first three this winter on our westward advanture. No plans to visit Georgia in the near future, but the Carter Museum will be one of our first stops, for sure.

Our last couple of camping nights were spent in great sites, near water in quiet nearly-deserted campgrounds (Lake MacBride State Park IA, and Illini State Park, IL) A calm way to finish off a great vacation.wp-1477663321637.jpgwp-1477663371483.jpgA few last thoughts…wp-1477663262804.jpgDon’t forget to vote.wp-1477663306758.jpg



13 thoughts on “Hoovering

  1. I just received this kit, and can't wait to ink her up. Esliaeclpy when I see you gorgeous creation. Love the colors and that butterfly just puts this card over the top. LOVE IT!!! HugsDebbie


  2. I guessed the wrong President. I remember the Hoovervilles during Hoover’s term. He also presided over part of Prohibition, the strengthening of the Mafia and gangs and Speakeasies.
    Not much of an historian, here. LOL Love your commentary along with the pictures. Glad you’re home safe and sound. Good to see you tonight along with your sister and bil.


    • That’s why we love the Presidential Museums, Alison. They are such a lesson in the human, as well as the political side of the people who have inhabited the office. I probably ly was never much of a history student growing up, but now I find that I really welcome the lessons from these Museums.

      Good to see you, too. Thanks for not blaming me for the lousy weather these past few days.


  3. Hoover was the president that invented the vacuum cleaner, right? I do like the hat he’s wearing while flyfishing.

    I went to Plains, GA in 1978 on the way to Daytona Beach and saw the peanut farm/facility and the various Carter homes. Saw Billy Bob and Miss Lillian from way afar…have a can of that thar Billy Bob Beer somewhere.


    • We must have missed the vacuum cleaner room of the Presidential Museum. Do we have to go again?

      Other than the very nw corner if Georgia which we nicked almost by accident, we’ve not been there are all. Not even sure where Plains is. But, I know I’ll get to Jimmy’s Museum one day, and love it.

      Put that Billy Bob Beer in your bomb shelter. That would probably ly be all that it’s good for.


  4. Another fun and interesting blog, girlfriend. Always teaching us something! And I voted today! We have early voting here so tell Hillary, she’s got an early start! (but I did recognize that sweater!)


    • Dang! I knew it was a thin disguise!

      We are happy to be home for a month or two. Are you Coastal Caravaning? What are your next travel plans?

      I will be very happy when this election is over. Sad how low we have all sunk. World leaders? HA!


  5. I have to admit that the only things that I knew about Hoover was that the stock market crash occurred just a few months after he took office, and that the seeds for the crash were sown long before he took office. That, and he loved flyfishing. As far as I’m concerned, any one who loves to fly fish is alright in my book.

    Looks like you had some excellent weather for the last leg of your trip, with lots of peaceful camping.


  6. If you ever do wander down this way to see the Carter Museum, consider some free driveway surfing at our place …. flat level paved area with water & electric in a quiet peaceful setting. We’re at the top of Lake Lanier. You can see aerial videos of our yard and lake if you check out the “Aerial Videography” section on our channel :-)


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