The definitive biography of one of the United States' most controversial presidents: Herbert Hoover.
Prize-winning historian Glen Jeansonne delves into the life of our most misunderstood president, offering up a surprising new portrait of Herbert Hoover - dismissing previous assumptions and revealing a political Progressive in the mold of Theodore Roosevelt and the most resourceful American since Benjamin Franklin.
Orphaned at an early age and raised with strict Quaker values, Hoover earned his way through Stanford University. His hardworking ethic drove him to a successful career as an engineer and multinational businessman. After the Great War, he led a humanitarian effort that fed millions of Europeans left destitute, arguably saving more lives than any man in history. As commerce secretary under President Coolidge, Hoover helped modernize and galvanize American industry and orchestrated the rehabilitation of the Mississippi Valley after the Great Flood of 1927.
As president, Herbert Hoover became the first chief executive to harness federal power to combat a crippling global recession. Though Hoover is often remembered as a "do-nothing" president, Jeansonne convincingly portrays a steadfast leader who challenged Congress on an array of legislation that laid the groundwork for the New Deal. In addition Hoover reformed America's prisons, improved worker safety, and fought for better health and welfare for children. Unfairly attacked by Franklin D. Roosevelt and blamed for the Depression, Hoover was swept out of office in a landslide. Yet as FDR's government grew into a bureaucratic behemoth, Hoover became the moral voice of the GOP and a champion of Republican principles - a legacy reignited by Ronald Reagan and that still endures today.
A compelling and rich examination of his character, accomplishments, and failings, this is the magnificent biography of Herbert Hoover we have long waited for.
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- Jean "I am an avid eclectic reader."
Superb biography of a vastly under-rated president
I have not read the print edition so I really can't compare them. However, the audio edition is superbly done. The reader is one of the best to whom I have listened, and I have listened to a lot of audio books.
I now have a greater appreciation for Herbert Hoover. He was a brilliant man who served all of humanity without thought of enriching himself. He may be the man most responsible for saving more lives from starving to death than any person in history. Unfortunately, he was president when The Great Depression began. It is interesting to speculate how things would have gone if FDR had been elected in 1928 and Hoover in 1932 or if Hoover had never been president. He would probably gone down in the history books as one of America's greatest humanitarians.
I think the despicable treatment of Hoover by FDR was unconscionable. Between his election in November of 1932 and taking office in March of 1933, FDR did absolutely nothing to help the country by assisting Hoover. FDR wanted the country to suffer as much and as long as possible so that he could 'ride in on a white horse" and rescue the country. Ironically, FDR pursued many of the same policies Hoover used. FDR did not end the Great Depression, WWII helped the nation back to recovery along with other factors.
The Democrats used Hoover and The Great Depression for the next 30-40 years as a reason why the country should never elect another Republican. Harry Truman, among others, realized the greatness of Hoover and treated him with respect.
He read the story beautifully.
FDR's incredibly nasty treatment of Hoover from FDR's election until FDR died.
The book really opened my eyes to what a kind and generous man Herbert Hoover was. He has suffered too long at the hands of the worshipers of FDR, in particular the liberal historians.