Pine Mountain Settlement School
Series 09: BIOGRAPHY
Loren Wight Kramer
Community School PMSS
Green Hills School
LOREN KRAMER Staff, 1968-1970
5th & 6th Grade Teacher in the PMSS Community School; Recreation
TAGS: Loren Kramer, Loren Wight Kramer, Atossa French Kramer, Hindman Settlement School, Alternative Service Program, American Friends Service Committee, bookmobile drivers, Berea College, Lick Branch, Antioch Graduate School of Education, government programs, Nancy Sather, PMSS teachers, John C. Campbell Folk School, Settlement Institutions of Appalachia (SIA), Berea College, Vietnam War
LOREN KRAMER: Before Pine Mountain
According to Loren Kramer, “… the story of my adult life…began at Hindman Settlement School” in Knott County, Kentucky.
Loren grew up in Modesto, California. During the early years of the Vietnam War, he applied to the Alternative Service Program (ASP), a Selective Service agency that manages programs of civilian work performed in lieu of military conscription. Through the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), he found work as a bookmobile driver. That, he recalls, “was the beginning of the education of my life.”
After serving as a bookmobile driver for the two years of service required by ASP, Loren attended Berea (Kentucky) College for a year and a half, earning a B.A. in Elementary Education in 1961.
He found work at Hindman Settlement School, where he spent one semester as Recreation Director. For another 2 1/2 years, he taught school at Lick Branch. Next, he spent a year at Antioch Graduate School of Education in Putney, Vermont. He then returned to Knott County, where he taught part of a year in the US government program for out-of-school teens in Letcher, Knott, Leslie, and Perry counties.
As Loren puts it, “thanks to Hindman Settlement School,” he met his future wife, Atossa (“Toppy”) French. After graduating from the Oberlin Conservatory, Atossa found work at Hindman Settlement School as a driver/teacher of the Music Mobile, and then at Pine Mountain Settlement School.
It was at Hindman, that the two met their longtime friend, Nancy Sather, who later worked at Pine Mountain from 1966 through the 1970s and served many years as a PMSS board member.
LOREN AND ATOSSA KRAMER: At Pine Mountain
Both Loren and Atossa were workers at Pine Mountain Settlement School from fall 1968 until spring 1970. Atossa taught third and fourth grades in the school year 1968-1969, then served as a part-time music teacher during the following year. During that same period, Loren taught fifth and sixth grades and recreation. Both were also involved in the folk dancing program at the School.
In 1968 Loren and Atossa were married on the Pine Mountain ridge above Pine Mountain Settlement School. Their son, Michael was born while they were still at the School. The Kramers left Pine Mountain in June 1970, and Nancy Sather took over Atossa’s teaching position.
LOREN AND ATOSSA KRAMER: After Pine Mountain
The next stop for Loren and Atossa, and now baby Michael, was the John C. Campbell Folk School (JCCFS) in Brasstown, North Carolina. At this time, their second child, Becca, was born.
Loren was also actively involved with the Settlement Institutions of Appalachia (SIA). Founded in 1970, the SIA was a non-profit consortium of private service institutions in South Central Appalachia dedicated to facilitating the exchange of ideas, cooperation in program development, and fundraising. PMSS and JCCFS were among the original 17 member institutions. Loren served as Treasurer and was also designated an agent at the first meeting of the executive committee of the board of directors. Beginning in 1976, Loren essentially served as President in his capacity as Executive Secretary.
After JCCFS, the family moved to Berea, Kentucky, in 1975, where Loren became director of Students of Appalachia at Berea College and Atossa taught college classes in music.
In his later years, Loren, inspired by all his past work experiences, earned a Library Science degree. He then found employment in the field through a longtime friend from Hindman Settlement School…the place where it all began.
Loren Wight Kramer was born on July 6, 1936, in Los Angeles, California, to Wendell Kramer, a minister, and Ruth Kramer. The 1940 U.S. Census lists three older siblings: two brothers, Richard and Buryl, and one sister, LaVonne. At the time they were living in Richmond, Contra Costa County, California. Atossa French Kramer was born in 1940 in Brooklyn, New York.
|Alt. Title||Loren Wight Kramer ; Loren W. Kramer ;|
|Creator||Pine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY.|
|Alt. Creator||Ann Angel Eberhardt ; Helen Hayes Wykle ;|
|Subject Keyword||Loren Kramer, Atossa Kramer, Atossa French Kramer, Hindman Settlement School, Alternative Service Program, American Friends Service Committee, bookmobile drivers, Berea College, Lick Branch, Antioch Graduate School of Education, government programs, Nancy Sather, PMSS teachers, John C. Campbell Folk School, Settlement Institutions of Appalachia (SIA), Berea College, Vietnam War|
|Subject LCSH||Kramer, Loren, — b. 1936.
Kramer, Atossa French, — b. 1940.
Pine Mountain Settlement School (Pine Mountain, Ky.) — History.
Harlan County (Ky.) — History.
Education — Kentucky — Harlan County.
Rural schools — Kentucky — History.
Schools — Appalachian Region, Southern.
|Publisher||Pine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY.|
|Type||Collections ; text ; image ;|
|Format||Original and copies of documents and correspondence in file folders in filing cabinet.|
|Source||Series 09: BIOGRAPHY – Staff|
|Relation||Is related to: Pine Mountain Settlement School Collections, Series 09: BIOGRAPHY – Staff.|
|Coverage Temporal||1936 – 2000s|
|Coverage Spatial||Pine Mountain, KY ; Harlan County, KY ; Brasstown, NC ; Knott County, KY ; Modesto, CA ; Berea, KY ; Oberlin, OH ; Los Angeles, CA ; Richmond, CA ; Brooklyn, NY ;|
|Rights||Any display, publication, or public use must credit the Pine Mountain Settlement School. Copyright retained by the creators of certain items in the collection, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.|
|Donor||Loren Kramer, Nancy Sather|
|Description||Core documents, correspondence, writings, and administrative papers of Loren and Atossa Kramer ; clippings, photographs, books by or about Loren and Atossa Kramer ;|
|Citation||“Loren Kramer” and “Atossa French Kramer.”Series 09: BIOGRAPHY – Staff. Pine Mountain Settlement School Institutional Papers. Pine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY. Internet resource.|
|Processed By||Helen Hayes Wykle ; Ann Angel Eberhardt ;|
Berea College. Chimes Yearbook on e-yearbook.com. Class of 1961. Loren Kramer pictured with members of the “Country Dancers” See also 1959 Yearbook. For text of 1961 Chimes: https://archive.org/stream/chimes196100bere/chimes196100bere_djvu.txt
“Loren Kramer” and “Atossa French Kramer.” Series 09: BIOGRAPHY – Staff. Pine Mountain Settlement School Institutional Papers. Pine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY. Internet resource.
“United States Census, 1940,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:K9QD-J7K : accessed 04 March 2022), Loren Kramer in household of Wendell Kramer, Judicial Township 15, Contra Costa, California, United States. Records of the Bureau of the Census, 1790 – 2007, RG 29. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 2012, roll 198. Internet resource.
Worldcat.com search for “Kramer, Loren,” accessed 04 March 2022.
Kramer, Loren W. Settlement Institutions in Southern Appalachia. Atlanta: Southern Regional Education Board, 1969. Print.
In the document, individual reports (by state) of each institution provide information such as character and philosophy of the institution, governing structures, staff resources, facilities, and history. Additionally, a profile of each institution describes types of programs, dates of origin, affiliations, and project area trends. Individual reports of 6 agencies and a list of institutional reference materials are included. It is concluded that settlement institutions contribute to the future of Appalachia by utilizing local ties and the freedom of being private. By bringing innovation and change in their areas of influence, these institutions help to provide for the needs of Appalachia’s culture.
Kramer, Loren W. Student Manpower Resources in Kentucky ; college and university programs for work-learning in Kentucky. Berea Ky: Work-Study Development Project, Office of the Dean of Labor, Berea College, 1974. Print.
Kramer, Loren W. and Philip W. Conn. Settlement Schools of the Southern Mountains. Morehead, Ky: Division of Media Services, Morehead State University, 1981.
Kramer, Loren W. A Comparison or Academic and Labor Performance of Berea College Students ; a study in two phases by Berea College. Berea Ky: Work-Study Development Project, Office of the Dean of Labor, Berea College, 1974. Print.
Kramer, Loren W. Games from Knott County, Kentucky : collected in the spring of 1963 from school children. Hindman (Ky) Settlement School,1963. Print.
Describes playground and other games, collected from elementary school children in Kentucky. Organized alphabetically and categorized by type (1 team, indoor, relay, blindfold, etc.), with rule and name variations indicated.