Uncommon Americans: The Lives and Legacies of Herbert and Lou Henry Hoover

By Timothy Walch | Go to book overview

V
That Glorious Burden

Battle though he did, then, Hoover could not master the Depression emergencies, because he remained wedded to realizing his vision of a “New Day” of sustained economic growth. He did not understand that profound tensions inherent in new systems of consumption and hierarchy were dividing the nation.

—David E. Hamilton

Lou Henry Hoover’s quiet and reserved crusade from 1929 to 1932 has received little attention, and she has suffered by comparison with her successor, Eleanor Roosevelt, who had a vast number of well-funded federal agencies to respond to her initiatives to deal with the twin problems of unemployment and destitution that befell women after 1929. Exploring the approach of the Hoover administration and its First Lady to the matter of direct and work relief for women introduces another facet for historians who play the now familiar New Deal game we call “Evolution or Revolution.”

—Martha H. Swain

We remember the Hoover administration for its sophisticated and realistic sense of the costs of war as well as the necessary conditions for international tranquility, for its commitment to world peace in the midst of severe economic downturn and the diminished ability of the United States to influence world events.

—Alfred L. Castle

Seven decades removed the Hoover presidency, nearly a generation after the collapse of the New Deal coalition, America’s political traditions are still clouded by a faulty understanding of Hoover and his ideas…. It is only with a clearer sense of Hoover’s legacy that Americans can begin to think straight about politics and public life in our own time.

—David A. Quigley

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