Early Years of Herbert Hoover

Herbert Hoover was born in West Branch, Iowa. He spent ten years in Iowa prior to moving to Oregon at the death of his parents.


Narrator: Herbert Clark Hoover was born in West Branch Iowa on august 10, 1874 to parents Jesse Hoover and Huldah Minthorn Hoover. Quakers, whose religion would instill in Hoover an appreciation for hard work, education; and mold his personality into one of quiet, contemplation and resolute commitment to success. Although orphaned at age nine along with his older brother Theodore and younger sister Mary, Hoover wrote in his memoirs of the fondness he had of his childhood in Iowa. 

Herbert Hoover: I am glad, a son of Iowa. To come back to the place where I was born. Here I spent the first 10 years of my boyhood. That I might express my appreciation of those kindly and sympathetic folks, who taking a boy to their hearts wiped away the one grief of childhood. 

Narrator: A year after his parents died Hoover traveled to Oregon to live with an uncle Henry John Minthorn, who had lost his own son.

Craig Wright, Sr. Archivist, Herbert Hoover Presidential Library: Well I think one of the big changes that you see is Quakers don't actually encourage a lot of reading and things, but his uncle was a school superintendent and a physician. He gets to now have access to. He's very excited Charles dickens. He becomes very interested in higher education and improving himself. 

Narrator: Although hoover never finished high school he continued to study. His devotion paid off, and he was admitted to Stanford in the university's first class of students in 1891.


Clearing the Static: Herbert Hoover and the Radio Act of 1927
© 2020 Stephen Coon


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