Pine Mountain Settlement School
Series 09: Biography – Staff
Ann Wulf Pishzak Correspondence II 
Teacher of Home Economics, Pine Mountain Settlement School, 1925-1927, 1931-1932
Teacher, Primary Grades at Big Laurel 1928-1929, 1938-1944 (Weaving Teacher 1942-44)
[Published 2021-Feb-24 aae]


Tea party at Country Cottage lawn. (Jubilee in background.) with Fern Hayes (not shown), Dr. Emma Tucker, Gladys Hill, Edith Cold, (?), Miss Pishzak, (?), Grace M. Rood (standing at left). Grace Rood Album II. [rood_116.jpg]

TAGS: Anna Wulf Pishzak, correspondence, teachers, Medical Settlement Big Laurel, Dogwood Breakfast, Glyn Morris, Alta and Chad T. Turner, Nancy Boggs, weaving, looms, Marjorie Robinson, Janet Grant, Emily Rose Lewis, Ada Birkett, William D. Webb, H.R.S. Benjamin

CONTENTS: Anna Wulf Pishzak Correspondence II

1939-1944 Day-to-Day Operations between PMSS & Medical Settlement, Big Laurel


[001] January 6, 1939. To Pishzak at Medical Settlement (M.S.), Big Laurel, KY, from [unsigned], sending condolences for the death of her father.

[002] January 26, 1939. To Pishzak from [unsigned], suggesting Pishzak contact Mrs. Ann Richards, Supervisor of Pack Horse Library, Harlan, KY, concerning hiring Edna Patterson to work for her.

[003] March 30, 1939. To Pishzak from [unsigned], asking if she would take her vacation earlier because “someone has offered financial aid in seeking a substitute for you during your vacation.
[004] April 1, 1939. To Morris from Pishzak, declining an earlier vacation.

[005] April 26, 1939. To Pishzak from [unsigned], inviting her to the Dogwood Breakfast on April 30 on Zande House Terrace.

[006] April 28, 1939. (Transcription of a “postal card”). To Pishzak from [unsigned], asking for her vacation plans.
[007] April 28, 1939. To Morris from Pishzak, providing her vacation plans.

[008] N.D. To Morris from Pishzak, asking leave for three days to join her sister and friend to the Smoky Mountains.

[009], [009a] May 26, 1939. Typewritten letter to Morris from Pishzak. “Under a new ruling of the NYA, the girls who have been working down here will have to work in Harlan instead.” Therefore, Nancy Boggs, hired help since February, is leaving. Asked if a new girl will be sent and suggests Ruth Ann Cornett. Reverse side of letter shows a notation in shorthand.
[010] May 30, 1939. To Pishzak from [unsigned]. There are no girls available to send to M.S. this summer.

[011] June 29, 1939. To Morris from Pishzak, asking to leave on July 1.

[012] July 18, 1939. To Pishzak in Chicago from [unsigned], asking her to return to M.S. on July 31.
[013] July 22, 1939. Will drive down and arrive on the 31st.

[014] November 21, 1939. Typewritten letter to Morris from Pishzak at M.S., inviting Mr. & Mrs. Morris and Mrs. Keith to a play by the Big Laurel Community.
[015] November 22, 1939. To Pishzak from [unsigned, apparently Morris], regretting that he will not be able to attend the play but will tell others.


[016] March 20, 1940. To Pishzak from [unsigned], asking her to meet with Morris on the 25th.
[017] March 28, 1940. MEMORANDUM on PMSS stationary, apparently written by Morris, recording a conversation with Pishzak. He advised her that there may be changes at the Medical Settlement during the year and “the present arrangement is considered temporary…” Pishzak agreed to stay under these arrangements.

[018] April 15, 1940. To Pishzak from [unsigned], asking her to tell Morris her vacation plans.
[019] April 16, 1940. Typewritten letter to Morris from Pishzak, reminding him about her wanting to take two months’ vacation this summer; suggests Alta and Chad Turner for substitutes.

[020] April 26, 1940. Typewritten letter to Morris from Pishzak, who encloses her work report; asks for a few days off this winter to join friends on a trip; suggests that Alta and Chad Turner stay with Nancy Boggs in her absence. Ask if PMSS would supply transportation for Big Laurel girls to attend a 4-H club style show in Harlan. Mrs. Perkins is anxious for them to attend, and also Maxine Holbrook and Emma Lou Mullins.

[021] April 30, 1940. To Pishzak from [unsigned]. Mrs. Morris asks if Big Laurel could use any of the used clothing that she has.

[022] May 2, 1940. To Pishzak from [unsigned]. Asks if Chloe and Hayes can live at M.S. in June and July; agrees to her taking two days off and that Chad and Alta fill in for her; Mr. [Arthur] Dodd is working on transportation for May 11.
[023] May 6, 1940. Typewritten letter to Morris from Pishzak, who agrees that Chloe and Hayes live at the Settlement in June and July.

[024] November 18, 1940. To Pishzak from [unsigned], asking if she received books from New Jersey.

[026] December 11, 1940.  Typewritten letter to Morris from Pishzak, asking for a week off beginning January 1.
[025] December 11, 1940. To Pishzak from [unsigned], permitting her vacation.

1941 Changes at Medical Settlement

[027] February 5, 1941. “MEMORANDUM OF CONVERSATION WITH MRS. PISHZAK….We talked about the matter of her finding some group to support her there, inasmuch as the School does not propose to spend any more money at the present at Medical Settlement.” Pishzak had approached Miss Emily Storer for support.

[028] February 10, 1941. Typewritten letter to Morris from Pishzak, “…it would be unwise for me to try to carry on the work without support from the outside.” Pishzak has contacted interested people.
[029] February 19, 1941. To Pishzak from [unsigned]. Thanks her for contacting people to support the Settlement. Additional image: N.D. A statement that Pishzak agrees to pay PMSS $2.00 per loom per year for depreciation on 6 PMSS looms at the Settlement, beginning October 8, 1941.

[030] May 30, 1941. MEMORANDUM FOR MRS. PISHZAK. Medical Settlement policies for retaining the personnel, supplying coal and wood, building a coal house, paying for repairs and upkeep. Additional image: N.D. Morris’s handwritten note listing topics for the memo.

[031]CROSS REFERENCE SHEET. NAME: Mrs. Anna W. Pishzak. SEE: Also, Bookkeeper’s file–P”

[032] August 4, 1941. To Pishzak in Chicago from [unsigned], assuring that work at M.S. is “going nicely. … I hope …that some inspiration will come forth about further use of Medical Settlement.”

[033] through [033b] August 25, 1941. Four-page letter to Morris from Pishzak, who is studying weaving and helping her folks move. She has found Miss Marjorie Robinson to help at M.S., who taught schools in New York. Lists several concerns: Canning jars, return of mattresses borrowed from the Settlement when Laurel House burned down, delivery of looms, oiling the floor in the weaving room. Miss Robinson’s baggage, need for a sewing machine, request for maintenance; Pishzak asks for a salary as a weaving teacher. Asks for a list of donors.
[034], [034b] September 1, 1941. Two-page letter to Pishzak from Morris, who replies to her questions and expresses support for her effort to “enlarge the program at Medical Settlement.”

[035] “CROSS REFERENCE SHEET. NAME: Mrs. Anna Pishzak re: 4 mattresses to be replaced, jars, and weaving room floor. SEE: Bookkeeper’s File – letter of September 11, 1941 – under P.”

[036], [036a] September 17, 1941. Two-page letter to Morris from Pishzak, who describes her understanding about starting a weaving project at M.S.; the need for mattresses for guests; about oiling the floor. Mentions that she is paying Nancy and Emily for the summer. Miss Florence Daniels, a former PMSS weaving teacher, has been training Pishzak, and may visit October 3 to help set up looms.
[037] September 22, 1941. To Pishzak from [unsigned, apparently Morris.] Responds to her letter.

[038] September 29, 1941. MEMORANDUM OF CONVERSATION WITH MRS. PISHZAK: Reaffirmed that “the school is not committed in any way to financial support of Medical Settlement…. We agreed that as soon as Mrs. Pishzak begins to teach weaving, the money appropriated by the Colonial Coverlet Guild for the purpose of helping with a weaving program at Pine Mountain would be turned over to Mrs. Pishzak toward the maintenance of this program at Big Laurel.” Other PMSS agreements concern the coal bin, furnishing 3 looms, and printing “circulars to advertise the weaving program.”

[039] Postcard to Morris, address side.
[039a] September 30, 1941. Postcard to Morris from Pishzak, asking to send “the reel for winding warp” along with the looms.

[040] October 16, 1941. To Pishzak from “J.G.”, concerning the arrival of the piano tuner.

[041] December 15, 1941. To Mrs. Morris from Pishzak, asking to borrow items for a Christmas program; invites PMSS staff.
[042] December 20, 1941. To Pishzak from [unsigned, apparently Mr. Morris]. Sending some of the items; cannot attend.


[043] February 2, 1942. To Pishzak from [unsigned], enclosing a $10 check for Miss Annette Van Bezey for M.S. work.

[044] March 23, 1942. To Pishzak from “J.G.”, asking her to meet with Morris about the weaving program.

[045] April 4, 1942. To Pishzak from “J.G.”, asking for information about her two co-workers.
[046] April 17, 1942. Typewritten letter to Miss Janet Grant, PMSS, from Pishzak, enclosing information about her co-workers. Since Pishzak was appointed chairman of the Sugar Rationing Registration for Big Laurel, she asked about transportation to the Harlan meeting of personnel workers. Handwritten notation in the margin by Morris that he responded by postcard on April 20 that Dodd is going.

April 1942 – June 1944 Teaching Weaving Classes at Medical Settlement

[047] April 27, 1942. To Morris from Pishzak, informing him that she has begun to teach weaving; students will be Emily Rose Lewis, possibly Frances Cornett, Miss Robinson, and Miss Birkett.
[048] April 29, 1942. To Pishzak from [unsigned], sending encouraging words about the weaving project.

[049] May 8, 1942. To Pishzak from [unsigned], inviting her to the Dogwood Breakfast on May 10, per Mrs. Morris.

[050] July 2, 1942. To Pishzak from [unsigned], who will be writing the Board “concerning the arrangements for Medical Settlement next year” after talking to Miss [Alice] Cobb first.

[051] July 15, 1942. Typewritten letter to Arthur Dodd from Pishzak, asking for someone at PMSS to stay with Emily Rose Lewis until Pishzak, Miss Robison, and Miss Birkett return from vacation.

[052] Postcard, address side, to “Miss Janet Grant, Pine Mt., Ky.” 
[052a] To Miss Grant from Ada Birkett, thanking her for the invitation; planning a sale and need boxes from PMSS to be sent via the school bus.

[053] N.D. From Dodd: “Memorandum of conference with Mrs. Pishzak” about repairs. Handwritten notation at top of page: “Mr. Webb.”
[054] N.D. Handwritten notes with “Mrs. Pishzak” at the top, concerning Mr. Wilder needed for roof repair; Mr. [Boone] Callahan to finish job started at M.S.; Mr. [William] Hayes to furnish logs; will write the Board about $30 a month for Mrs. Pishzak.

[055] Postcard, address side, to Mr. [William] D. Webb, Director, PMSS.
[055a] December 3, 1942. Postcard to Webb from Pishzak, asking for more fireplace logs.

[056] Postcard, address side, to “Miss J. Grant,” Pine Mt., KY.
[056a] December 11, 1942. To Grant from Pishzak, with questions about M.S. people attending PMSS programs.
[057] December 12, 1942. To Pishzak from [unsigned, apparently Grant], listing PMSS Christmas programs, including Nativity Play, supper-hour programs, Mummers’ Play, Christmas play and party. Describes the play, which “represents lords and ladies eating dinner in formal style and a minuet is danced.”

[058] Postcard, address side, to William D. Webb.
[058a] December 14, 1942. To Webb from Pishzak, asking for immediate delivery of coal.


[059], [059a] N.D. Two-page note to Grant from Birkett, enclosing payment for their dinner at PMSS.
[060] February 6, 1943. To Birkett from [unsigned], returning payment: “All of you from Medical Settlement are always welcome here as our guests.”

[061] February 12, 1943. To Webb from Pishzak, who invited Dr. Emma Tucker and her daughter-in-law to the next Mothers’ Meeting; asked whether the schoolbus could bring and return them.

[062], [062a] January 19, [no year]. To Webb from Pishzak, explaining the “water situation” at M.S.; asked for a new supply of coal.

[063] DUPLICATE OF [061]

[064], [064a] May 7, 1943. Two-page letter to Webb from Pishzak, reporting that [Roland F.] Pinke will be taking three from M.S. to the “Day of Prayer” at a Middlesboro Presbyterian Church.

[065] May 10, 1943. To Pishzak from [unsigned]. “Mr. Bent of Berea Student Industries and Secretary of the Southern Handicraft Guild suggested we send your rug with others to Allanstand… He was much interested in seeing weaving underway here again.” Mentions that “Mr. Hayes has ordered a keg of staples” and offered to send a “pint.” The next movie will be Gunga Din.

[066] July 12, 1943.  To Pishzak from Webb, sending $35 check that was left over from last year’s M.S. repair budget.

[067] July 24, 1943. To Pishzak from “A.W.D.”, asking when the next social event at M.S. “so that Mr. Baker can go down and get hold of the ‘hoodlums.’”
[068] August 1, 1943. To Dodd from Pishzak. Mr. Baker won’t be needed, as no event will be scheduled in her absence.

[069] August 3, 1943. To Webb from Pishzak in Chicago, who had ordered 50 bushels of wheat from the AAA office. Mrs. Columbus Creech will oversee sacking, but the feed room needs to be rat-proofed; asks if Brit Wilder could add stripping.

[070] September 9, 1943. Typewritten letter to Webb from Pishzak, who lists items and repairs that are needed at M.S. 

[071] Postcard from Big Laurel, KY, address side, to Webb.
[071a] December 20, 1943. To Webb from Pishzak, inviting PMSS staff to the M.S. Christmas program.

[072] December 22, 1943. To Webb from Pishzak, reporting that the water pipe in the Community House kitchen has burst. Notation in margin: “Brit made repair. WW.”


[073] March 21, 1944. To Pishzak from Webb, who invites Pishzak to “continue another year at Big Laurel. … [A] committee, which would include Dr. [Clark] Bailey, Henry Creech, Miss [Alice] Cobb, and Mrs. [Birdena] Bishop, was set up to consider future developments at Big Laurel….” Miss Smith drove Mrs. [Dorothy Olcott] Elsmith and Miss [Evelyn K.] Wells, visiting Board members to M.S., but everyone was away at Sunday School. Mentions hearing that Miss Robinson is leaving M.S.

[074] April 28, 1944. Typewritten letter to Webb from Pishzak, reminding him of M.S.’s need for coal and kindling.

[075] May 4, 1944.  Typewritten letter to Webb from Pishzak. Alta Turner (Mrs. Chad T.) is willing to stay at M.S. during Pishzak’s vacation. Chad may be called to the army this month.

[076] May 4, 1944. Typewritten letter to Webb from Pishzak, quoting from Miss Robinson’s letter about returning to Big Laurel. Handwritten postscript: “Miss Robinson does not know that I am leaving. However, there is no reason why she cannot be told the fact now, with the precaution that she does not write about the matter to anyone here.”

[077] May 5, 1944. To Pishzak from Webb, who may find the need for material and repairs useful for the Work Camp people when they arrive on June 23. “May we add a word of appreciation for your service at the Settlement in the past, and regret that you are changing to County teaching…. We wish you the best at Coxton….”

[078] May 6, 1944. To Pishzak from Webb, suggesting Mrs. Turner work at the center with Miss Robinson. Webb wrote to recruit Moody-Bible candidates for Pishzak’s position, at her suggestion.

[079] May 19, 1944. Typewritten letter to Webb from Pishzak. The Turners moved out again due to a leaking roof; but Alta will live at M.S. until another worker arrives.

[080] June 1, 1944. To Webb from Pishzak. “This, most likely, will be my last letter to you in my presentofficial capacity.’” Miss Robinson will arrive June 3 and a neighbor, Mrs. Fields, will bring her in. Describes her housecleaning tasks before leaving. Postscript: “I told Grace Creech (Mrs. Bill Creech) that… she could have [our cow] until needed here again.”

[081] June 25, 1944. To Webb from Pishzak. “School is going along fine…the remaining two weeks will go fast.” She is living in Preacher Smith’s home.

July 1944 – 1961 After Medical Settlement

[082] July 19, 1944. To Mrs. Webb from Pishzak in Chicago, enclosing an inventory for Medical Settlement.

[083] September 20, 1944. To Pishzak in Coxton, KY, from H.R.S. Benjamin, Director, asking about the looms and boxes at M.S.

1945, 1950, 1961

[084] February 12, 1945. To Pishzak in Coxton, KY, from Benjamin, enclosing her receipt for 25 PMSS calendars. Miss [Abbie Winch] Christensen and her girls are working the looms and learning to salvage “because of the great shortage of threads.”

[085] September 18, 1950. To Burton Rogers, PMSS Principal, from Pishzak in Coxton, KY, asking him to send a statement of her PMSS teaching to the Harlan County Board of Education, that should include:

1925-1927, Teacher of Home Economics
1927-1928, Teacher of Primary Grades at Big Laurel (Paid by PMSS)
1931-1932, Practice House, PMSS, Home Economics.

[086] September 20, 1950. To Harlan County Board of Education from Rogers, certifying Mrs. Anna Wulf Pishzak’s teaching service at Pine Mountain.
[087] January 19, 1961. To Pishsak in Baxter, KY, from Burton Rogers, Director, thanking her for her contribution in memory of Mr. Henry Creech. The gift was added to the Henry C. Creech Scholarship Fund. Rogers praises Creech’s PMSS work: “…[H]e was one of the best friends the School has ever had….”

See Also:
ANNA WULF PISHZAK Correspondence I, 1925 – 1938
 ANNA WULF PISHZAK Staff – Biography