Good morning, it’s Thursday, Oct. 1, 2020. On this date in 1891, Stanford University opened its doors. On the first day of school, the incoming class of 555 students received a pep talk from David Starr Jordan, Stanford’s first president.
“It is for us as teachers and students in the university’s first year to lay the foundations of a school which may last as long as human civilization,” he said. “It is hallowed by no traditions; it is hampered by none. Its finger posts all point forward.”
Inspirational words, to be sure, although the speaker had a problematic career, as I’ll reveal some other morning. For today, let’s concentrate one of the 555 students in that pioneer class on the sprawling campus that would become known affectionately as The Farm. Herbert Hoover was an orphan with a bent for the sciences. Innovative and decisive, he succeeded at a variety of