HOOVER, HERBERT. (1874-1964). Thirty-first president of the United States. TLS. (“Herbert Hoover”). As secretary of commerce. 1p. 4to. Washington, June 17, 1927. On his imprinted Department of Commerce stationery to the editor-in-chief of The Saturday Evening Post, GEORGE H. LORIMER (1867-1937).
Typed Letter from Herbert Hoover about the Great Mississippi Flood of 1927, the Most Destructive River Flood in the History of the United States
Signed by Herbert Hoover
I am moved to suggest that I should write you a piece about the Mississippi flood. The flood control end of this business will be under public discussion for many months yet, and I am going to have a sort of an intimate knowledge of this river and its doings that might enable me to say something that would be entertaining to your readers. However, you can be perfectly frank in dealing with me about these questions. Perhaps it would suit your journalistic sense better to have some capable man like Garet Garrett review the subject, and I would be glad in such case to supply him with any material.
In 1927, Hoover “began his campaign for the presidential nomination indirectly, by supervising relief efforts in the Mississippi flood… and [his] trips to the devastated areas to organize and direct the feeding, clothing, and housing of displaced families received wide coverage in the national press” (DAB). His efforts paid off: “Nothing could have better reminded the country of the skills of the Great Engineer and Humanitarian” (ibid), and he was elected the following year. When Lorimer became its editor-in-chief, the Saturday Evening Post “was an elderly and indisposed magazine” (ibis). Under his direction, it became immensely successful and influential, known for featuring the work of leading contemporary writers and thinkers. “On political matters [Lorimer] believed… that ‘business is or should be the specialty of government'” (ibid). Initially progressive, with Lorimer’s drift to the right, the Post later “became an active — if unofficial — organ of the Republican party. Lorimer knew many presidents personally, and nearly every president during his editorship contributed to the Post, but he was most active in promoting the fortunes of Herbert Hoover” (ibid). Boldly signed, and in very fine condition.