Sunday, December 21, 2008

Henry Pratt's Memories XXXI

ontinuing from the 1985 Tri-City Record article.
Wilmer Pratt's health continued to fail. He died in1926. During the 1920's farming had gone  into a slump---then there was the Depression. Land was sold to meet debts. By 1955 Henry had only 28 acres left.
Henry says whimsically that he could not even afford to marry. However in 1937 he did marry a lovely lady. Eva Whidby also lived in Watervliet. She had graduated from Western Michigan College and taught school for many years. Western Michigan was a two year school then and graduates received a life teaching certificate.*  After World War II it didn't count for much and teachers had to return for a degree.
He and his wife had two children--Vincent was born in 1938 and Linda was born in 1943. He lives in the family home with Vincent. His daughter lives in Holland, Mich. He pointed to a picture of his lovely wife and sadly says she died in 1970.
PERSONAL NOTE;  Aunt Eva was my fifth grade teacher. Some of my classmates accused me of being "teacher's pet" because she was dating my Uncle. She was also the school's art teacher. I still remember her trying to teach us how to draw a flower pot.
* My Aunt Mary (Woodruff Weed) also got her teaching certificate from Western. She taught grade school at Plainwell and Three Oaks. I visited her class in Plainwell once when I was a little kid. My only real memory was that there was a fire drill and I got to slide down a fire escape from the second floor. (emailed August 6)

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