Third Thursday at Hoover’s – The 1929 Christmas Eve White House Fire

Third Thursday at Hoover's - The 1929 Christmas Eve White House Fire

Dec 16, 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Meeting Room D


This ‘Best of’ program originally aired in December 2020 to a large on-line audience. This year, we welcome 20 Iowa public libraries and a new audience to learn about this tragic fire that relocated Hoover out of the Oval Office for much of his presidency.

Smoke was noticed by a White House telephone operator who sounded the alarm. The fire was thought to be contained when the first engines arrived, but flames suddenly appeared in areas outside of the fire zone. In the end, it became a four-alarm fire with dozens of engines and ladder companies working to extinguish the inferno. Although most of President Hoover’s important papers were saved, the Executive offices were destroyed. A number of miscellaneous documents littered the White House lawn in the aftermath. Despite the commotion, Mrs. Hoover continued a party for the children of their good friends in the main portion of the White House which was unaffected by the fire.

This is a free virtual program and is open to the public. Contact the Reference desk at 712-323-7553, to watch at the library with us, or register here to view it from home with ZOOM.

Face masks are recommended in public indoor settings.