Herbert Hoover was born on this day, August 10, 1874. His father, Jesse Hoover, was a blacksmith; his mother, Hulda Minthorn Hoover, a seamstress and recorded minister in the Society of Friends (Quakers).
The Hoover children spent their early years growing up in West Branch, Iowa. They could hike, explore, and swim as well as hunt for fossils and agate in the glacial gravel along the railroad tracks.
Their Quaker upbringing forbade the Hoover boys from carrying a gun, so they learned to hunt for rabbit and prairie chickens with bow and arrow. They learned these skills from young American Indian boys who were attending a local government training school. Willow poles, butcher string lines and hooks that cost a penny apiece provided Herbert Hoover with sunfish and catfish.