Herbert Hoover

A Biography

Eugene Lyons

My Copies



The author's second biography of Hoover. Reads a lot like a hagiography, does not cite any specific claims or give sources beyond a general bibliography, and contains at least one direct assertion of an incorrect fact (saying that Hoover's mother did not have any title within the Quaker organization).

He brought tremendous gifts to hundreds of millions of children on all continents, in bread and milk and new hope. But the greatest gift of all is the example of his own life and character. Youth craves and needs heroes. We who are no longer young can honor his memory best by helping a new generation to understand the shining integrity, the moral greatness, of Herbert Hoover.

  • about Herbert Hoover
    • p. viii (Easton Press, 1964)

    In any other denomination [Huldah Minthorn Hoover] would have become an ordained pastor; among the Quakers she had no title or parish or renumeration, except in the love of those whom she instructed.

  • about Hulda Minthorn Hoover
    • p. 4 (Easton Press, 1964)

    There were only two or three Democrats in West Branch—one of them conveniently a drunk and therefore a living reproof to the Democratic Party.

    • p. 16 (Easton Press, 1964)

    ...the most respected of his uncles—Dr. Henry John Minthorn, country doctor, missionary, teacher, Civil War veteran.


    He had just been put in charge of a new school, the Friends Pacific Academy...


    ...a university man whom he found endlessly romantic. For this uncle had driven teams for the "Underground Railway" in Iowa as a boy, had run away from home to enlist in the Union Army, and had taken part in the Battle of Shiloh.


    Dr. Minthorn had set up Indian schools in his time and, in fact, first came to Oregon as a U. S. Indian Agent.

    • pp. 17-18 (Easton Press, 1964)

    Dr. Minthorn had practically demanded that his sister's boy be surrendered to him. His only son had just died and it seemed to him right that one of Huldah's orphans be sent to fill that place in his home and heart.

  • about Herbert Hoover, Dr. Henry John Minthorn
    • p. 17 (Easton Press, 1964)

    In Portland he was collected by a taciturn uncle in the familiar Quaker garb and conveyed to the new Friends' settlement called Newberg on the Willamette River, about twenty-two miles southwest of Portland.

  • about Herbert Hoover, Dr. Henry John Minthorn
    • p. 18 (Easton Press, 1964)

    A boy's hours are longer than a man's hours.

    • p. 18 (Easton Press, 1964)

    "He is a simple, modest, energetic man who began his career in California and will end it in Heaven; and he doesn't want anybody's thanks," Ambassador Page reported to President Wilson at the start of the Belgian Relief.

  • by Eugene Lyons, Walter Hines Page
  • about Herbert Hoover
    • p. 92 (Easton Press, 1964)

    In August 1921, at the request of Secretary of Commerce Hoover, representatives of many social work agencies met in Washington to plan cooperation on the Russian appeal... At one point in the proceedings a woman raised doubts about the wisdom of the whole business.

    "Mr. Secretary," she said, "aren't we going to help Bolshevism by feeding these people?"

    Hoover's renowned calm broke down. He sprang to his feet and banged the table angrily. "Twenty million people are starving," he exclaimed. "Whatever their politics, they shall be fed!"

  • by Eugene Lyons, James Rosenberg
  • about Herbert Hoover
    • p. 146 (Easton Press, 1964)

    Measured by accomplishment and ability, Hoover holds commanding rank. If five Americans were to be selected on the basis of merit and ability to devise remedies for the present condition of the world—Hoover's name would head the list.

  • by Calvin Coolidge
  • about Herbert Hoover
    • p. 180 (Easton Press, 1964)