Edna Evelyn Skaife Gardner Hartwig [1910-1989]
While searching for more information on my Paternal Great Grandmother, I found her in this 1925 Yearbook of the Curtis Agricultural College. She must have enrolled after marriage, as her married name is included in the yearbook itself. Unfortunately, her husband Floyd would die just 10 short years later. Curtis School of Agriculture, as it was known at the time, existed in several forms from 1913-1968. According to the UNSA Historical Website:
The Nebraska School of (NSA) Agriculture was created as an agriculture high school. At that time in history, most students ended their formal education in eighth grade. If a student wished to continue his or her education, he or she would have to attend a state high school and, in most cases, that meant leaving home to live on a high school campus.
In 1911, the Nebraska State Legislature voted to build an agriculture high school somewhere in southwest Nebraska. Curtis won the bid for the school and construction began. The school’s Agriculture Hall was completed in 1913 and welcomed its first students in the fall of that year. Since the school was a state institution, no tuition was charged. Room and board cost $4 a week and the students stayed in the “best homes in Curtis”. Eventually dormitories were built to house the students.
Edna was a beloved Grandmother to my father, who remained close to her (or as close as her new husband would allow*) until her death in 1989. This is one of the very few photos I’ve seen. Thank goodness for digital archives!
*Conrad Hartwig, who married Edna some time after Floyd’s death, never cared for our side of the family thanks to the shenanigans of Edward Gardner (my paternal grandfather) who should have been named Dick, if you catch my drift. Unfortunately this helped to sour Hartwig-Gardner relations at that time. Someday I hope to make connections from that side of the family, as it is the closest remaining family on my father’s side with one very notable exception that I will address sometime later.