20th-century American history: The crazy career of Herbert Hoover

Posted: October 20, 2017 in economy
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A devil to sup with

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Herbert Hoover

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20th-century American history

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Hoover: An Extraordinary Life in Extraordinary Times. By Kenneth Whyte. Knopf; 752 pages; $35.
FOR his philanthropic efforts during the first world war, Herbert Hoover was described as a “man who began his career in California and will end it in heaven”. In a new biography, Kenneth Whyte lists the many hardships Hoover went through. Generally, he used them to his advantage—to increase his wealth, achieve fame and become America’s 31st president. At least, that is, until the Great Depression, which ruined him politically.

Born in Iowa in 1874, Hoover became determined early in life to earn a fortune for the security and independence it would bring. After graduating as a geologist from …

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