Tuesday, January 31, 2017

PBK key



PBK member Molly Tetrault tells the story of how she found her great-grandfather's PBK key:

"When my great-grandmother passed away a little over a year ago, my mother and her uncle — my great uncle — were talking about my great-grandfather, Willard G. Bromage, who we called Popper.  During the conversation, they realized that both Popper and I had graduated Phi Beta Kappa, eighty years apart. Uncle Sam sent me Popper’s Phi Beta Kappa key along with the newspaper clipping announcing the induction ceremony and his name card from the induction ceremony. His picture is farthest right in the middle row in the newspaper clipping. Uncle Sam also wrote me a beautiful note about the one time he could remember Popper wearing the Key for a public talk. Because of our similar academic interests, my family decided after my great-grandmother passed away that I should have Popper’s diploma and his desk.

"Popper graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University in 1938 with a degree in History and French. He taught history for a year and then joined the army at the outbreak of World War II. After being wounded in Germany, he was a French interpreter for the U.S. Army, and he later worked in insurance after the war. He passed away when I was 16. He encouraged my love of history and politics from a young age — he used to sit me on his knee and tell me stories from the war and sing me “Yankee Doodle Dandy.”