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Matlack, Henry W.

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Henry William Matlack was a professor of music at Grinnell College beginning in 1901. Merta Rebecca Johnson was his student and they married in 1903. In 1922 Henry was named alumni secretary of the college; he died in 1936. Merta was active in many community activities including the League of Women Voters and Entre Nous, was a determined gardener and expert weaver. In 1936 she was a local supervisor for the Consumer Purchases Study, a WPA project and continued working with area families on nutrition and housekeeping into the 1940s. She lived until 1968 in the family home at 1510 East Street in Grinnell.
They had six children, all of whom attended Grinnell College: David Johnson, Mary Westgate, Margaret Westgate, Jane Fairbanks, Laura Wolcott, Helen Constance. David remained a Grinnell resident his entire life; the daughters all moved away, married, and led active lives; eventually they all returned to Grinnell. Laura moved into the family home and lived there until her death in 1997. (See attachment: Matlack Family Tree for additional information about the children, their spouses, and offspring.)

Kleinschmidt, John

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John Kleinschmidt was professor of French at Grinnell College from 1948 until his retirement in 1977. Following his retirement, he devoted his energies to studying the history of the Grinnell community and became widely known for his knowledge of town architecture, culture, and people. Following his death in 2000, many of the photographs and historical documentation he collected were donated to the Department of Special Collections and Archives.

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