Herbert Hoover Library in West Branch.

Upgrades are planned for the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library in West Branch. A bill in the Iowa legislature would create a partial state tax credit for donations to the project. The last updates were completed in 1992.

“By the way, that is the longest time period of any presidential library in the United States to go without having a major renovation,” said Allan Hoover III, the great grandson of the only native Iowan ever elected president.

The goal is to complete this new round of renovations by August 10, 2024, in honor of Herbert Hoover’s 150th birthday.

“Great granddad felt a genuine bond with Iowa, so much so that he chose West Branch to his final resting place along with his wife Lou Henry,” Allan Hoover III said.

“…When he was a young boy he was in his father’s blacksmith shop in West Branch…Great granddad stepped on a hot piece of coal that I imagine not only hurt, but it left a mark on his foot that would be there the rest of his life. He affectionately called this mark his ‘Brand of Iowa’ that was with him every step of the way as he went through life at the Paris Peace Conference, Secretary of Commerce, in the White House and the years beyond.”

The National Archives oversees 13 presidential libraries, including Hoover’s, and the Archives requires 90% of money to be raised before any construction and renovation of the libraries may start.

Governor Kim Reynolds is asking legislators to appropriate $5 million in state tax dollars, plus create a state income tax credit worth 25% of any donation an Iowan makes to the project.

(Photo from Hoover Library website.)