Breda Garrity
IB History of the Americas
Born on August 10th, 1874.
Hoover was one of three children in his family.
When he was six his father died of heart problems
and when he was nine his mother died of
When his mother died the children were separated
to live with different relatives.
Hoover was sent to live with his uncle in Oregon where
he studied at Quaker schools as per the religious beliefs
of his family.
He went on to study at Stanford where he was part
of the first class when it opened in 1891.
There he received his diploma in engineering.
Herbert Hoover was a brilliant man.
He launched a career as a mining engineer.
 He traveled all over the world to find valuable mineral
deposits and establish business enterprises to extract
This business made him a millionaire.
At the start of WWI Hoover dedicated his
talents to humanitarian efforts.
Problems for Americans who wanted to get home:
 Traveler’s checks were not being recognized.
 Did not have enough money to get home.
Solution Hoover came up with was an “American
 They made loans and cashed checks when needed.
 In the end they sent 12,000 Americans home with a sole
debt of $300.
After Belgium was invaded by
Germany they experienced a
massive food shortage- only 25%
of their needs were being met.
The Ambassador of Belgium
contacted Hoover to help. Thus
creating the Committee for Relief in
The task was to get food from
abroad and ship it to Belgium
Hoover arranged the terms by
which this food was imported.
 In the end 11.4 billion pounds of
food was shipped to 9.5 million
civilians of the war.
When the United States joined the war, President
Woodrow Wilson asked Hoover to return to the
U.S. to serve as wartime food administrator.
The Food Administration was created August 10,
1917 directed by Herbert Hoover.
He encouraged Americans to reduce their consumption of
commodities such as meats so as to send more overseas.
After the war, under the direction of Hoover, it
became the American Relief Administration.
This was an American relief mission which spread
throughout Europe and later, Post-Revolutionary Russia
 The American Relief Administration delivered over 4 million
tons of relief supplies to 23 war-torn European countries.
For his relief efforts in the war, Hoover became
an advisor to President Woodrow Wilson.
He then made Hoover a part of the American
Delegation to the conference of the Treaty of
Hoover then served as secretary of commerce
for 7 years under President Harding and
President Coolidge.
Hoover believed in a limited role for
government or in other words “laissez-faire”.
He was worried that too much government
intervention posed a threat to capitalism and
He felt that assistance should be handled on a local,
voluntary basis.
This can be seen in how Hoover vetoed several bills
after the Crash of 1929 that would have provided
direct relief to struggling Americans.
Hoover became the Republican Party nominee
for the election of 1928
He beat his opponent, Albert E. Smith by an
overwhelming majority of electoral votes:
Hoover 444 to Smith 87.
During these first few months Hoover was very
He worked to improve conditions for Native Americans
on government reservations.
 Won passage of the Boulder Canyon Project Act which
led to the construction of the dam on the Colorado Riverlater to be named the Hoover Dam.
 Placed nearly 2 million acres of federal land in the
national forest reserve.
Along with these, there were two additional
problems Hoover made a point to focus on:
Improving the economic health of the nation's
agricultural sector.
 Tariff reform.
October 24, 1929, seven months into Herbert
Hoover’s presidency, the stock market crashed.
Stock prices dropped drastically.
This was due to excessive speculation in the stock
Tuesday October 29, Black Tuesday, the stock
market collapsed completely.
By mid-November the values of shares on the
New York stock exchange had declined 40%
This made for a loss of $26 Billion dollars!
The Depression's impact on the
Banks in operation
Prime interest rate
Volume of stocks sold (NYSE)
Privately earned income
Personal and corporate savings
1.1 B
0.65 B
President Hoover was blamed for the stock market
However, Hoover had in fact warned President Coolidge
in 1925 about the dangers of excessive stock market
 He again brought this concern to attention when he was
running for presidency in 1928.
By 1933
Nearly half of America's banks had failed
 Unemployment was approaching 15 million people, or 30
percent of the workforce.
 Nationwide unemployment rates rose from 3 percent in
1929 to 23 percent in 1932.
After the crash some of the actions Hoover took
were that he:
Ordered federal departments to speed up construction
 Cut $160 million in taxes.
 Doubled the amount spent on public works.
As the Depression set in, there were more
demands for government intervention and
However, Hoover refused to involve the federal
government in forcing fixed prices, controlling
businesses, or manipulating the value of the
currency- all of which he felt were steps towards
Hoover was largely criticized for refusing to
approve large-scale relief programs that might
have helped to alleviate the nation's suffering
and hunger.
His unwillingness to use federal dollars to stimulate
the nation's economy, and his failure to recognize
the all-encompassing nature of the Great Depression
was taken as indifferent to the suffering of
Purpose- To
show people
how bad of a
Hoover was. It
was to show its
readers that he
was keeping
these people’s
money from
Origin- May of
1932 in front of
the White
Value- It
informed readers
of this huge
problem and
what these Bonus
March Men were
doing about it.
Limitation- It
does not fully
express the
measures Hoover
may have
initially taken to
help the Veterans
and does not
completely show
the aftermath of
the Bonus March.
Staged by WWI veterans in December of 1932.
Several years prior, the Soldier’s Bonus Act
was passed by Congress to grant veterans
Adjusted Compensation Certificates payable in
Because of the Great Depression and millions out of
jobs, the veterans converged on the capitol to urge
for early redemption of the certificates.
The “Bonus Army” started with around 1,000
men and within a week it grew to 17,000.
June 15, 1932, The House of Representatives
passed the Patman Bonus Bill which would
grant $2.4 billion to be used for the veteran’s
However, it was immediately stopped in the
After Congress adjourned the only
compensation offered was to pay for the
veteran’s transportation home.
Many took this offer, but thousands remained to
“Prosperity cannot be
restored by raids upon the
public Treasury”
~President Hoover, 1930
State of the Union Address.
Hoover ordered military force to remove the
protestors who remained.
Too much force was used- tanks, tear gas, and
cavalry were brought in to force the Bonus Army
out of the city- this display, ordered by Hoover,
although not to that extent, even further disgusted
As they walked down Pennsylvania Avenue the Bonus
Army sang:
Mellon pulled the whistle,
Hoover rang the bell,
Wall Street gave the signal
And the country went to hell.
This was an act sponsored by
Senator Reed Smoot and
Representative Willis C. Hawley
and signed into law on June 17,
1930, that raised U.S. tariffs on over
20,000 imported goods to record
When campaigning for president
during 1928, one of Herbert Hoover's
promises to help beleaguered farmers
had been to increase tariffs of
agricultural products.
If there was ever a chance that Hoover would
be re-elected in the 1932 election, it was
completely diminished after the Bonus March
of 1932.
It was a clear victory for Roosevelt- only 6 states
voted for Hoover.
He was the most disliked of all Presidents in
He was blamed for the Stock Market Crash in 1929.
The Great Depression and its longevity was also
seen as his fault, especially by the Democratic Party.
A "Hooverville" is the popular name for shanty
towns built by homeless people during the Great
Most large cities built municipal lodging houses
for them, but the depression increased this. The
homeless clustered in shanty towns close to free
soup kitchens.
These settlements were often formed on empty land and
generally consisted of tents and small shacks.
Authorities did not officially recognize these
Hoovervilles and occasionally removed the
occupants for trespassing on private lands, but
they were frequently tolerated or ignored out of
They blamed President Hoover for this, and named the
town after him.
Democrats coined other terms, such as:
"Hoover blanket“- old newspaper used as blanketing.
"Hoover flag“- an empty pocket turned inside out.
"Hoover leather" - cardboard used to line a shoe when the sole
wore through.
"Hoover wagon“- an automobile with horses hitched to it
because the owner could not afford fuel.
 In Canada, these were known as Bennett buggies, after the
Prime Minister at the time.
After 1940 the economy recovered, unemployment fell,
and shanty eradication programs destroyed all the
President Harry Truman invited Hoover to the White House,
where he was asked to organize European war relief after World
War II.
In 1946 Hoover
In 1947, President Truman appointed Hoover the chairman of the
Commission on Organization of the Executive Branch of the
Traveled to 38 countries,
Documented food needs,
Located surpluses, and
Arranged food shipments to countries in need.
It was Hoover’s job to cut government waste and improve efficiency.
Also, in 1947, was when the Colorado River Dam was renamed
the “Hoover Dam”.
Beginning in the 1970s, Hoover's reputation began to improve.
However, most now argue that Hoover, in reality, could have
done little to prevent or solve the Depression.
Herbert Hoover died at the age of 90 on October 20, 1964.
"Bonus Army March in Washington." Bonus Army March in
Washington. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 Feb. 2014.
"Herbert Hoover on the Great Depression and New Deal, 1931–
1933." The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History. N.p., n.d.
Web. 03 Feb. 2014.
"Herbert Hoover." A&E Television Networks, n.d.
Web. 03 Feb. 2014.
"Hoovervilles." A&E Television Networks, n.d. Web.
02 Feb. 2014.
"Stock Market Crash of 1929." Stock Market Crash of 1929. N.p., n.d.
Web. 04 Feb. 2014.
"The Ludwig Von Mises Institute." Prelude to Depression: Mr.
Hoover and Laissez-Faire. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 Feb. 2014.
N.p.. Web. 1 Feb 2014.

The Role of Herbert Hoover