Amana RV Park
The main reason for travelling through Iowa was that every time we've been near here, we've driven past the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and this time it was a destination. I also wanted to see the Capitol building in Des Moines but with the state fair going on this week and that we went through there on a Saturday when they weren't open. It will have to be the next time we come through this way.
The weather has been delightful and almost cold for us. As we made the turn off of I 80 to West Branch we were both saying what a beautiful well kept area it was.
Our first stop was the Herbert Hoover visitor center. It was nice to have a knowledgeable park ranger manning the desk. He suggested a short 12 minute video about Hoover's early years. The visitor center also had his original cradle and high chair on display.
We were given a brochure with the four buildings that were open for visitors--cottage where he was born, the blacksmith shop, the school and the friends meetinghouse.
Bill is going into the two room cottage where Hoover was born.
Bert Hoover's father died in 1880 when Hoover was 6 years old. His mother raised the boys until she died in 1884. At 10 years old Hoover went to live with his Aunt Millie and Uncle Allan for a year. His brother and sister were sent to other relatives to live. When he was 11 he took a train to Newberg, Oregon to live with his mother's brother, Dr. Henry John Minthorn, and his family.
The Hoover's moved next door to the C. E. Smith house in 1879, but nothing remains from that house.
There were plaques on the outside of any buildings that you couldn't go into.
We followed the sidewalk from the walking tour, but the door to the library was on the side of the building.
Just a note for anyone traveling in a RV on I 80, there is RV parking at the Library.
I can't figure out why they name these presidential "libraries". The first time we went to one figured there would be books in them.
There are 13 Presidential Libraries. Imagine our surprise when we discovered that we've been to all of them except one. Jimmy Carter's is now on our bucket list. However, we did visit his boyhood home and the school in Georgia.
We watched another video about Hoover that was also well done in the theater of the Library.
I wasn't surprised to learn that he loved the outdoor life. I don't understand fishing in a suit, tie and hat though.
There was an exact replica of the Waldorf Astoria Hotel where he lived and worked many hours after he retired.
Out of all the exhibits that were in the library I found this first teleprompter the most interesting even if it was called a tel-executive in those days.
There was a special exhibit of all of the presidents.
Bill gave Donald Trump a few suggestions on running the government.
After we left the Library we drove past the Old Capitol Museum. Parking was on the street, and my feet were tired so we decided not to visit it.
We stopped in Amana and walked the streets since the weather was so nice. Shopping has a way of making my feet feel better.
The buildings are beautiful and at least 150 years old. We decided to visit the Heritage Center tomorrow.
It took real will power to walk by this store without going in.