Collier's New Encyclopedia (1921)/Hoover, Herbert Clark

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HOOVER, HERBERT CLARK, an American public official and philanthropist. Born at West Branch, Iowa, in 1874; he attended Leland Stanford University, where he graduated in 1895. Learning mining engineering in California, he set out upon his career as a prospector which carried him to China, Russia, and finally to England. He had already acquired a considerable fortune when the World War broke out in 1914. He took charge of the work for Belgian Relief and became chairman of the Committee for the Relief of Belgium. His energy and organizing ability wrought a wonderful work in feeding and clothing a whole people who were practically destitute. When America entered the war President Wilson appointed him food controller, and by his application, energy, and foresight the European allies were fed and the prices of foodstuifs kept within reasonable limits. His marvelous work in these two offices made him a formidable, though unsuccessful, candidate for the Republican nomination for President in 1920. He continued his work of feeding the destitute peoples of central Europe, more especially the children, during 1919, 1920, and 1921. He became Secretary of Commerce in the Cabinet of President Harding on March 4, 1921.

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