Pine Mountain Settlement School
Series 17: PMSS Publications (Published by the School)
Dear Friend Letters 1945
CONTENTS: Dear Friend Letters 1945, April 10 – Pages 1 – 2
Dear Friend Letters 1945 consists of one 2-page letter that includes the following subjects:
Letterhead lists names of director and treasurer ; Benjamin states that, as we invested in the war to achieve victory, we must invest in training youth to lead the nation to a better future ; 261 of Pine Mountain’s past citizens invested in the present war and 6 have died in the war ; suggests that donors invest in the 100 PMSS students at $10 a share per year ; gives examples of other investors ; reports that PMSS has an agreement with the county office of education to supervise 5 local elementary schools ; asks for donors to help continue PMSS’s work with students and community ; [signed] H.R.S. Benjamin, Director ;
GALLERY: Dear Friend Letters 1945
TRANSCRIPTION: Dear Friend Letters 1945
Page 1 [dear_friends_1945_04_001]
PINE MOUNTAIN SETTLEMENT SCHOOL, INC
PINE MOUNTAIN, HARLAN COUNTY, KENTUCKY
H.R.S. Benjamin, Director
C.N. Manning, Treasurer
April 10, 1945
The thought uppermost in our minds these days is VICTORY. In the ultimate victory each of us will share. some will rejoice because loved ones have returned. Others will feel the vindication of their faith in a government built on high principles. To achieve victory all of us have invested our fund. The slogans of the day stir up enthusiasm and action. They read, “Save For Victory”, or “Invest in Future America!”
The idea of such investment appeals to me. No one will deny that the future of our nation rests with its youth. To assume capable, responsible leadership that youth must be trained…..trained for any function, high or low, that falls to it. By your own choice it is your privilege to participate in the training of a few of American’s future citizens. Two hundred sixty-one of Pine Mountain’s past citizens have “invested” their young lives and abilities in America’s future by active participation in the present struggle. Of this number six have made the supreme sacrifice. To assure ourselves of a continuance of this fine generation in the ones that follow; to assure ourselves that other children of this area may have the same privilege of Christian training; we suggest that you “invest in this future America”. We have one hundred students. Let each student represent an investment of ten shares at ten dollars per share per year…..though this does not by any means cover the total cost to the School. Not a heavy investment to assure ourselves of a secure American future. What marvelous dividends will be paid in character and life! Last September one family made their investment in the total school life of one promising student. A church underwrote the total shares of another of our girls. These investments are already paying fine dividends. How many shares can we count on from you?
Lately I read in a magazine these words: “The character of the individual is the product of the community.” At Pine Mountain we try in many ways to reach the community. Recently through a cooperative agreement…
Page 2 [dear_friends_1945_04_002]
…with the county office of education we have been authorized to supervise the educational program of five elementary schools — all within a six mile radius on this side of Pine Mountain. We have been granted power to select, place and supervise teachers; take charge of physical equipment; care for medical and sanitary needs; and direct recreational activities. In other words we hope to tie ourselves in with the young life of this immediate locality. The result, in time, should be changed individuals and fine communities that will continue to make contributions to our American way of life. There are such fine qualities to be conserved! The staff and I are thrilled by our opportunities to serve but we are aware that to be effective we must work humbly and in the spirit of love.
A rural philosopher suggests, “All you and I do is prove God’s laws. We cannot break them and when we fail to use God’s powers, we lose them.” You and I are pledged to make impossible a repetition of our nation’s past mistakes. We appeal to you to give us the confidence of your undergirding strength. We ask that your interest be made tangible so that Pine Mountain students and community children may be influenced permanently for good. We want this small bit of America to continue the dependable traditions that have established us as a nation. You and I do not want to lose God’s power by failing to use it as we work with America’s youth.
[signed] H.R.S. Benjamin
[Photograph caption: “STORY TIME! Juniors lead a recreation program at a county rural school.”]
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