Pine Mountain Settlement School
Series 09: BIOGRAPHY – Staff 
Series 14: MEDICAL
Teacher of Home Economics, PMSS, 1925-1927, 1931-1932
Teacher, Big Laurel, 1928-1929, 1938-1944
Anna Wulf Pishzak (c. 1895 – ?)


Margaret Motter Album – Girl’s Industrial, c. 1920s. [mott_3500_026-.jpg]

TAGS: Anna Wulf, Anna Wulf Pishzak, Ethel de Long Zande, Lewis Institute in Chicago IL, domestic sciences, Home Economics, Girl’s Industrial Building, cooking, sewing, William Rainey Harper, Allen C. Lewis, George Noble Carman, Medical Settlement Big Laurel, photography, Practice House, Emil Wulf


Teacher of Home Economics, Pine Mountain Settlement School, 1925-1927, 1931-1932
Teacher, Primary Grades, & Community Work at Big Laurel 1928-1929, 1938-1944
Teacher, Weaving at Big Laurel 1942-1944

A graduate of the Lewis Institute of Chicago, Anna Wulf Pishzak was well prepared to chart her own course through the world. Also, she knew how she wanted to put her skills to use and to grow them. When she learned of the opening for a Domestic Science Teacher at Pine Mountain she applied to say that, 

I am dependent upon myself for support. My father and mother are partially dependent upon me. However, if $75.00 with expenses is too high, I should consider a litter lower salary, provided it is livable.

April 14, 1925. PMSS Application Blank for “Anna Wulf.”

ANNA WULF PISHZAK Staff: Lewis Institute

The Lewis Institute in Chicago, established with money from the estate of Allen C. Lewis, was a remarkable institution founded at the turn of the century (1896-97). Under the forward-thinking direction of Trustee William Rainey Harper, a graduate of the University of Chicago, the Institute promoted programs for women but was committed to educational preparation for both men and women to make their way in the rapidly changing workforce of the country.

Trustee Rainey selected George Noble Carman as the Director of the new Lewis School. Carman was a man who generally shared the progressive ideas of Rainey but who trimmed the narrow division dictated by Lewis in his will. Lewis had mandated that the practical courses in Home Economics were not to mingle with the new field of polytechnics, a field he limited to men and that later shaped the school into the Illinois Institute of Technology. Lewis had mandated that the new Polytechnic School should be “second to none” but “in no way, was this school to interfere with the school for females.”

The Home Economics program at Lewis was then very thorough and scientific as described:

Home economics courses were opened with the Institute, and since this was a comparatively new field in this section for the country, they grew rapidly in attendance until, with the demand for college graduates as home economics teachers, the Institute took a step forward and granted that degree to its students. That was in 1912. This department ran the lunchroom in those early days, another novel feature found in no other high school in Chicago.
[Irene MacCauley. The History of the Lewis Institute, Illinois Institute of Technology, Archives and Special Collections.]

ANNA WULF PISHZAK Staff: Applying for a PMSS Position

Anna graduated from Lewis in 1918 with a B.S. Degree in Domestic Economy. What constituted the degree was an emphasis upon Household Management, or, as it was later called, “The House; Its Plan, Selection and Care.” It was a curriculum that was later adopted by the Home Economics Section of the Bureau of Education in Washington and found its way into many programs later developed for rural Home Economics programs.

Anna was not restrained by the chauvinism of Lewis’s vision. She declares in her application for the position at Pine Mountain that she “… served as the chemist for a flour milling company for four years, then as a draftsman and supervisor in a large concern where I am at present employed.” Home Economics, was, in fact, often described as Domestic Sciences. She was also, apparently, influenced by Director Carman’s delight in literature, as she declares her own interest in poetry and literature.

In her application, she declares she has no teacher training with the exception of that required by her degree but feels she is a hard worker and “fit for any position I may accept.” And, indeed she was. 

While quite qualified for work in a variety of arenas, Anna chose to make an application for the Pine Mountain position in order to hone her teaching skills. She was also motivated, it appears, by her training at the Moody Bible Institute of Chicago which prompted her to declare that she wanted to “...very much do some religious work along with the regular work.” She describes the “religious work” as not salary-driven but motivated by the “… benefit I might be to the people with whom I work.”

Ethel de Long Zande, the co-director at Pine Mountain Settlement, quickly gave Anna’s application full attention and, in May of 1925, the process of bringing Miss Wulf to Pine Mountain began. 

ANNA WULF PISHZAK Staff: At Pine Mountain

Ann (Wulf) Pishzak was at first a teacher of home economics at Pine Mountain Settlement School from 1925 to 1927 (Guide to PMSS Workers 1913-2000s). She later accepted a community work position at the Medical Center at Big Laurel for 1928, as mentioned in a letter to Anna Brockschlager, Big Laurel housekeeper, from Ethel de Long Zande, dated February 4, 1927.

For the two years at Pine Mountain, 1925-1927, Anna taught both elementary students as well as high school students in the newly built Girl’s Industrial building. Ethel de Long Zande describes the teaching regime:

Grades five, six, and seven will have both cooking and sewing half hour each, but we will arrange the work so that one grade is having sewing while another one is having cooking. The eighth grade will have sewing throughout the whole year. The ninth grade will, I hope, have weaving under the weaving teacher Second year high school girls will have sewing and third and four years will combine in a home economics course taking up the bigger questions of home economics such as budget, calories, vitamins, home planning, etc. 

July 31, 1925, letter to Miss Wulf in Chicago from Ethel de Long Zande.

Later, according to Anna Wulf Pishzak’s correspondence, she returned to the School to do community outreach work at the Medical Settlement at Big Laurel in the years 1938-1944 and to teach primary grades at the Big Laurel school. In 1943, Glyn Morris ended PMSS’s financial support of the Medical Settlement and Anna began teaching weaving classes in an effort to fund the Settlement’s continued existence.

Anna left the Medical Settlement in June 1944 for a position with the Harlan County Board of Education, teaching at a school in Coxton, Kentucky.


Anna, born c. 1895, came from a family that had immigrated from Germany in 1898 and were living in Chicago, Illinois, according to the U.S. Census 1910, 1920, and 1930. Her parents were Henry F.W. Wulf and Marie (Sammann) Wulf. She had three siblings, Emil, Bertha, and Minna.

After her first stay at Pine Mountain, Anna returned to Chicago and there she married William Pishzak in 1935. As of the 1940 U.S. Census, Anna (Wulf) Pishzak was widowed and living at Big Laurel, Kentucky, with her brother, Emil Wulf. Emil, five years older than Anna, was working as an ice-cream salesman. She was listed as an “attendant” at a “private school.”

See Also:
ANNA WULF PISHZAK Correspondence I, April 1925 – December 1938 
ANNA WULF PISHZAK Correspondence II, January 1939 – January 1961


Anna Wulf Pishzak

Alt. Title

Mrs. William Pishzak ; Miss Anna Wulf ; Anna Pishzak ; Anna W. Pishzak ; 




Pine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY

Alt. Creator

Ann Angel Eberhardt ; Helen Hayes Wykle ;

Subject Keyword

Anna Pishzak ; Anna (Wulf) Pishzak ; Mrs. William Pishzak ; Miss Anna Wulf ; Anna Pishzak ; Pine Mountain Settlement School ; teachers ; home economics ; Medical Settlement at Big Laurel ; immigrants ; Henry F.W. Wulf ; Marie (Sammann) Wulf ; Emil Wulf : Bertha Wulf : Minna Wulf ; William Pishzak ; Pine Mountain, KY ; Harlan County, KY ; Germany ; Chicago, IL ; Big Laurel, KY ;

Subject LCSH

Pishzak, Anna (Wulf), — c. 1895 – ?
Pine Mountain Settlement School (Pine Mountain, Ky.) — History.
Harlan County (Ky.) — History.
Education — Kentucky — Harlan County.
Rural schools — Kentucky — History.
Schools — Appalachian Region, Southern.




Pine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY





Collections ; text ; image ;


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


Series 09: Biography – Staff/Personnel




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

Coverage Temporal


Coverage Spatial

Pine Mountain, KY; Harlan County, KY ; Germany ; Chicago, IL ; Big Laurel, KY ;


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.





Core documents, correspondence, writings, and administrative papers of Anna (Wulf) Pishzak ; clippings, photographs, books by or about Anna (Wulf) Pishzak ;




“[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

2014-11-03 hhw ; 2015-09-18 aae ; 2021-02-15 hhw; 2021-02-20 aae ;


Sources “Anna (Wulf) Pishzak.” Guide to PMSS Workers 1913-1930 ;  Box 26 Personnel Files 1913-1949 ; Series 09: Staff/Personnel. Pine Mountain Settlement School Institutional Papers. Pine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY. Internet resource.

“United States Census, 1920,” database with images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 18 September 2015), Anna Wulf in household of Henry Wulf, Chicago Ward 35, Cook (Chicago), Illinois, United States; citing sheet 9B, family 228, NARA microfilm publication T625 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.); FHL microfilm 1,820,355. Internet resource.

“United States Census, 1940,” database with images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 18 September 2015), Anna Pishzak, Magisterial District 4, Harlan, Kentucky, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) 48-33, sheet 8A, family 111, NARA digital publication T627 (Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 2012), roll 1314.  Internet resource.

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