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Oelke, William C.

  • Persoon
  • 1906-1988

William C. Oelke was born in 1906, graduated from Grinnell College in 1928, received his Ph.D. from the University of Iowa, and was a member of the Chemistry faculty at Grinnelll College from 1931 until his retirement in 1977. He died in 1988.

Nilson, Paul Emmanuel

  • Persoon

Paul Emmanuel Nilson graduated from Beloit College in 1911, after which he upheld the long tradition of teaching in Tarsus, Turkey, that the college had established. Harriet Fischer Nilson graduated from Wheaton College in 1912, spent a year teaching in California, and then felt called to work in the mission field; in 1913, she was assigned to teach at the Adana girl's school. Paul and Harriet met through the education and missionary system; shortly before Paul returned to the United States to enter the seminary, he proposed to Harriet, who accepted. They were married after the end of World War I. Both continued to teach in Turkey in the cities of Tarsus, Talas, Diyarbakir, and Mardin. The Nilsons retired in 1957 and returned to the United States.

(Information from Stories from the Vineyard by Dorothy Nilson Fyfe)

Katayama, Sen (Class of 1892)

  • Persoon
  • (1859-1933)

Sen Katayama (1859-1933) graduated from Iowa College in 1892 and completed some graduate studies at Andover Theological Seminary and at Yale University. He worked as a university instructor and a Christian Sunday school teacher upon return to his native Japan but became increasingly active in labor and socialist causes as well. By the time of his burial in the walls of the Kremlin, Katayama had traveled widely and served as an officer in the Comintern.

Matlack, Henry W.

  • Persoon

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

  • Persoon

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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