LOUISE MERRILL

Pine Mountain Settlement School
Series 09: Biography – Staff/Personnel

Louise Merrill

Housemother at Practice House, Far House, and Boy’s House, 1930(?)-1936
Housemother and Dietician at Laurel House, 1935-1936


TAGS: Louise Merrill; Louise Moody Merrill ; Mrs. B.M. Bartlett ; Pine Mountain Settlement School ; housemothers ; Practice House ; Far House ; Boy’s House ; dieticians ; Laurel House ; archive records ; letters ; librarians ; Josephine Merrill ; Medical Settlement at Big Laurel ; teachers ; personnel files ; Wellesley College ; Helen Bartlett (Mrs. Norman Johnson) ; Office ; secretaries ; Ellen Merrill ; Barbara Bartlett ;


Louise Merrill was a much-loved housemother at Pine Mountain Settlement School. She came to the School in c. 1930 to work as a  housemother at Far House for the very young children who attended the School. Pine Mountain archive records indicate that, during the period of c.1930-1936, she was also a housemother at Practice House and Boy’s House. During her last year at the School, 1935-1936, she served as a housemother and dietician at Laurel House.

Louise’s experiences as housemother to a group of young children are vividly described by her in a letter to her mother, written in the 1930s. The following excerpt from that letter recounts early-morning preparations of the housemother and children to attend breakfast at Laurel House:

Twenty minutes to get dressed! I dressed quickly, and fastening my collars as I went, snatched up the bell, rang it vigorously, then rushed on to light the hall lamp and be ready for the children. You see, we have to rise ten minutes earlier than the five-thirty rising-bell, in order to get over to Laurel House on time. “‘Miss Merrill, Linda says she’s got the chicken-pox and don’t feel like getting up,” “Miss Merrill I can’t find my stocking,” “Miss Merrill, this button’s off,” “Miss Merrill, I’m freezin’,” are some of the things I hear and at the same [time I] issue orders like this: “Maud, see that every child’s nose is blown,” “Iona, have the girls left their wash-basins and soap-dishes clean,” “Grant, are the boy’s teeth and washstands clean, and are their beds turned back to air?” “Laura, are the windows all open?”

The breakfast bell rings, and the larger boys and girls help the little ones with their wraps.
Then we start on, and are overtaken by Maud, who reports that the lights are out, the screen’s on the fires and there is no water on the floors. (We can’t have nice oiled floors if the water is left on them, so we are particular to get it wiped up.) And I walk on, my disturbed nerves are soothed by the rippling of Isaac’s Run and the twinkling of the stars.

Her married name was recorded as “Mrs. B. M. Bartlett.” After leaving PMSS, she worked as a librarian in Newport, New Hampshire.

Other “Merrills” and “Bartletts” have been found in Pine Mountain School records. According to the PMSS Staff DirectoryMiss Josephine Merrill was Louise Merrill’s sister. She began working in 1931 at the Medical Settlement at Big Laurel. In 1933 her position changed to housemother at Boy’s House which lasted until 1946, followed by two years as a teacher of English, Bible and History in 1947-1949. Personnel files indicate that she was at the School until 1954. Before coming to Pine Mountain, Josephine had earned a B.A. degree at Wellesley College in Massachusetts. Her summer address was “in care of” her sister, Mrs. B.M. Bartlett in Newport, New Hampshire. She died in 1954, the last year of her stay at Pine Mountain.

Miss Helen Bartlett (Mrs. Norman Johnson) worked in the Office as a secretary in 1943 and 1944 as noted in the staff directory and her personnel file. The PMSS staff directory also states that she is the “possible niece of Josephine [Merrill].” Her last known address was Northwoods Narrows, New Hampshire.

Ellen Merrill was a teacher in 1913, the year before the School was founded. Her name appeared on a “List of Workers to 1928.” Also, a personnel file exists for Barbara Bartlett, a staff member in 1929-1933. It is not known whether either of these two persons were related to Louise and Josephine Merrill.


GALLERY: Louise Merrill


THIS INFORMATION HAS NOT BEEN CONFIRMED

Who is Ellen Merrill, listed as a teacher who came to PMSS in 1924  Did Louise Merrill come after 1933?  LOUISE = SHE IS SISTER OF JOSEPHINE MERRILL Not sure about Ellen ??

Louise Moody Merrill diary of 1924, (HSS)” – Cited in All That Is Native and Fine: The Politics of Culture in an American Region by David E. Whisnet (Google search result for “Louise Moody Merrill”)  – HSS = Hindman Settlement School Archives. David Whisnet mentions her but she doesn’t show up in Hindman record … mention of use of her diary from Hindman [?] but not in Stoddard’s book  .. says HSS  Hindman Settlement School.

SEE also Mary Louise Merrell  1937-38 Vassar

Married Stanley Wilson Merrell [Merrill]  see Wikipedia.

Was she older and married? Maiden name “Moody”?


Title

Louise Merrill

Alt. Title

Louise Moody Merrill ; Mrs. B.M. Bartlett ;

Identifier

LOUISE MERRILL

Creator

Pine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY

Alt. Creator

Ann Angel Eberhardt ; Helen Hayes Wykle ;

Subject Keyword

Louise Merrill; Louise Moody Merrill ; Mrs. B.M. Bartlett ; Pine Mountain Settlement School ; housemothers ; Practice House ; Far House ; Boy’s House ; dieticians ; Laurel House ; archive records ; letters ; librarians ; Josephine Merrill ; Medical Settlement at Big Laurel ; teacher ; personnel files ; Wellesley College ; Helen Bartlett (Mrs. Norman Johnson) ; Office ; secretaries ; Ellen Merrill ; Barbara Bartlett ; Pine Mountain, KY ; Harlan County, KY ; Newport, NH ; Wellesley, MA ; Northwoods Narrows, NH ;

Subject LCSH

Merrill, Louise, — 19??-1958
Pine Mountain Settlement School (Pine Mountain, Ky.) — History.
Harlan County (Ky.) — History.
Education — Kentucky — Harlan County.
Rural schools — Kentucky — History.
Schools — Appalachian Region, Southern.

Date

2014-05-11

Publisher

Pine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY

Contributor

n/a

Type

Collections ; text ; image ;

Format

Original and copies of documents and correspondence in file folders in filing cabinet

Source

Series 09: Staff/Personnel

Language

English

Relation

Is related to: Pine Mountain Settlement School Collections, Series 09: Staff/Personnel

Coverage Temporal

1930-1958

Coverage Spatial

Pine Mountain, KY ; Harlan County, KY ; Newport, NH ; Wellesley, MA ; Northwoods Narrows, NH ;

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

n/a

Description

Core documents, correspondence, writings, and administrative papers of [full name] ; clippings, photographs, books by or about [full name] ;

Acquisition

n/d

Citation

“[Identification of Item],” [Collection Name] [Series Number, if applicable]. Pine Mountain Settlement School Institutional Papers. Pine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY.

Processed By

Helen Hayes Wykle ; Ann Angel Eberhardt ;

Last Updated

2014-05-11 hhw ; 2015-09-14 aae ;

Bibliography

Source

“Louise Merrill.” PMSS Staff Directory; File boxes 24 and 26. Series 09: Staff/Personnel. Pine Mountain Settlement School Institutional Papers. Pine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY. Internet resource.

Return to BIOGRAPHY – A-Z

See also: “MERRILL – ‘DEAR MOTHER’ LETTER,” a letter from Louise Merrill to her mother, describing a day in the life of Pine Mountain Settlement School. [in progress]