August 7, 2017 Newsletter

Where will YOU be during the August 21st solar eclipse? Have you decided yet? Some say our own state capital, Salem, is one of the best places in the entire U.S. to observe it. But, we might want to wait to hear from our speaker this week, who will will be telling us all about this rare event. 8-)

REMEMBER: We’re back at the Cultural Center for this week’s meeting. Many thanks to Club President Todd Engle and the great staff at Friendsview for hosting us a number of times in the past few weeks.

Sarah Munro discusses Herbert Hoover and his ties to Newberg.

Last week’s speaker was Sarah Munro, director of one of Newberg’s “hidden gems”–the Hoover Minthorn House Museum (HMHM).

Sarah told us about the 31st President, Herbert Hoover, and his ties to Newberg’s heritage. Orphaned at the age of 11 in West Branch, Iowa, Hoover was brought to Newberg by his uncle, Dr. Henry John Minthorn.

The Minthorns had lost their only son the year before and needed a boy to help with the chores. One of “Bertie’s” (as the boy was called) jobs was to keep wood in boxes by the four wood stoves in the house and the kitchen stove on the back porch. He was also required to feed and water the horses and milk the cow.

For the first and only time in his childhood, Bertie had his own room. The furniture in Hoover’s room at the museum is the same furniture he used when he lived in Newberg.

Dr. Minthorn became the first superintendent of the Friends Pacific Academy, which provided a good school for Bertie.

Hoover left Oregon to enter the first class at Stanford University in 1891. In 1895, he graduated in geology, and met Lou Henry. He worked in a gold mine in Western Australia where he developed techniques to operate the mine more efficiently.

The British mining company where he worked transferred him to China. By this time, Lou had graduated–the first woman to graduate from Stanford in geology. They were married in 1899 and the next day set off for China.

When the Boxer Rebellion broke out, the Hoovers moved to London, where they were when World War 1 started.


Sarah shared Hoover’s humanitarian accomplishments–a side of the president not often known. Hoover’s many food relief efforts started with the Commission for Relief in Belgium, an effort that fed 10 million people. In 1921, through the American Relief Administration, aid was provided to the Russian peasants in the Volga River area and Hoover was again credited with saving millions of lives. In April 1947, school meal programs in the Allied zones were organized to feed more than 3 million children. Partly through Hoover’s efforts, the United Nations established UNICEF.

According to Sarah, through his relief efforts, Hoover likely holds the record for the total number of people saved from starvation.

When Hoover was president, he called together the first White House Conference on Child Health and Protection and it created the Children’s Charter.

The HMHM is the only presidential property in the Pacific Northwest, and the only separate museum facility in Newberg. The home was built by Jesse Edwards, one of the fathers of Newberg.


The museum, Herbert Hoover Park and the Herbert Hoover Highway were dedicated at a ceremony that was attended by President Hoover and some 3000 people on the anniversary of his 81st birthday in 1955.

You might want to check out this year’s celebration of Hoover’s 143rd birthday on Saturday, August 12th. From 1 to 4pm, admission to the museum will be free, and there will be music, games, ice cream by Cream Northwest and a free coffee cupping by Caravan Coffee.

Sarah brought some books for those with an interest in learning more about President Hoover. They are available at the Newberg library.


  • Visiting Rotarian Rick Kaufman joined us for the third week in a row. Looks like he will be transferring to our club very soon!
  • Dominique Thibault, our summer marketing intern from George Fox University. Dominique will be sharing his marketing plan with us next week……