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Title Esther Pederson Collection
Call Number MSS 12
Extent 1 box
Dates of Creation 1917-1972
Creator Pederson, Esther
Scope & Content The collection primarily documents the Moorhead State Teachers College in 1918-1919, when Esther was a student there. This is done through programs, and various books that are included in the collection. There are also genealogical materials for the Pederson family included in the collection that was thought to be compiled in 1978.
Admin/Biographical History Esther was one of a family of 11. Her mother died when she was 13.

Her father was a Lutheran pastor. Esther appears to have had a happy life in a large family, although she has no doubt carried a heavy work load at home with younger brother and sisters.

Esther graduated from Benson High School, Benson Minnesota. She did not continue her education until her sister, Ruth, was ready to attend Moorhead State Teacher's College, Moorhead, Minnesota. Education was very important in this family and at least two of her brothers attended St. Olaf College and played in a small band. Her college days were obviously happy days.

In 1980 she received a letter of invitation to a reunion at Halstead, MN. It appears she may have taught there before going to Casper, Wyoming.

We do know that sometime between graduation from Moorhead Normal School in 1919 and 1923, she accepted a teaching position in Casper, Wyoming. From the 1922 Alumni Record of Moorhead State Teacher's College, it appears she was also at Hancock. Of interest, in one of her diaries, she tells of arriving in Casper on the train with a number of other teachers. Her sister, Ruth, who also graduated at the same time as Esther, appears also to have taught in Casper at one time; however, in 1931 she was teaching in Jackson, Wyoming, some distance from Casper. From the materials we have on her, she continued to teach there into the late 1940's or 1950's.

Esther became immediately involved in school activities, the City's Treble Clef Chorus, and church choir activities.

Wherever she lived, she and the friends she made were active in church, and it was a focal point in her life. She met her future husband in Casper and in August, 1925, she married Walter H. Schmidt. They had no family, but loved the youngsters. Walter Schmidt was employed by the Wyoming Automotive Supply Company as an accountant and later a manager.

She and Walter lived in Casper, Wyoming, and Sheridan Wyoming. They both loved Wyoming and enjoyed the outdoors and their cabin near Sheridan (Story) where they spent many weekends with family and friends. In the late 1940's they moved to Greely, Colorado, where Walter continued in the automotive supply business. They resided in Greely until they both passed away; however, during the last 12 years of their lives, they wintered in Mesa Arizona.

They were privileged to travel around the United States in later years and made many trips to Minnesota to see Esther's family and to attend family reunions held from time to time. One of the last was the celebrating of 100 years in America.
People Pederson, Esther
Subjects Moorhead State Teacher's College
Access Conditions There are no access restrictions on the materials, and the collection is open to all members of the public in accordance with state law.
Copyrights The researcher assumes full responsibility for conforming to the laws of libel, privacy, and copyright of the state of Minnesota which may be involved in the use of this collection.
Language of Material English
Archival History Donated by Billy Jean Schmidt, 1987
Containers Alumni Record: Moorhead State Teacher's College, 1889-1927
Biographical Information on Esther Pederson, 1987
Commencement Activities, 1918-1919
Halstad Alumni Association, 1980
Home Economics Bulletin, 1917
Images [1918] - 1972
Membership Cards, 1917, undated
Minnesota State Normal School Catalog, 1917-1918
News Clippings, 1930, undated
Pederson Family History, ca. 1970
Praceptor, 1919
Programs, 1918-1919
School Documents, 1919
Senior Prom, 1918-1919
“The Bulletin,” 1917
Women's League Program, 1917
World War 1 Activities of School, 1918-1919