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Edith Brown Cavanagh '98
Alumnae Messenger, April 1945


The portrait of Edith Brown Cavanagh, Kemper Hall's first granddaughter, is fitly placed in our Hall of Fame on the Seventy-fifth Anniversary. By birth and natural heritage a member of the, Kemper Hall family, her love and loyalty and interest have been steadfast for nearly half a century. The name of Seth Doan, Edith's grandfather, is found among the original trustees of the school. Minnie Doan, her mother, heads the graduate list in the Roll Call. Charles Brown, her father, for years served Kemper Hall with devotion and untiring energy as a member of 'the Board of Trustees, and the 1932 Kodak was dedicated to his memory.

Research into old Kodaks gives us a picture of Edith as an all-round Kemper Hall girl, taking her part in dramatics and athletics, playing in recitals, serving on the Kodak staff from 1895 to 1898, being its assistant, editor in her senior year. She won the prize for English composition, and at graduation was valedictorian of her class in which she ranked second.

Although in the Alumnae Association she may stand out chiefly as the enthusiastic Chairman of the Alumnae Committee in the successful financial campaign of 1936, by the alumnae, themselves and by the school, she, will be, remembered best as a loyal, interested alumna, serving in humble capacities, seeking to give rather than to lead, responding promptly and wholeheartedly to every call throughout the years since graduation.

Edith has also bad a lifelong relationship, to the, Church. Confirmed by Bishop Nicholson, she is a spiritual granddaughter of both of his notable predecessors, for her father was confirmed by Bishop Kemper and her mother by Bishop, Armitage, making doubly strong the tie with Kemper Hall, which numbers these holy men of God among its founders. And not only by birth and heredity is Edith a churchwoman. She is always to be found among its regular and devout worshippers -- the, greatest service any communicant can render to her church.

In civic life, interested and active in all that is best, it is through the Girl Scouts that Edith has made, her best-known contribution. For six years she headed the local organization as Commissioner, and she, is now Chairman of the Kenosha Staff and Office Committee. She is a member of' the Great Lakes Regional Committee and served for three years as its Chairman, and for three years as Chairman of the Regional Camp Committee.. She is the Regional Member of the National Board of' Directors, a member of the National Camp Committee., Corre. sponding Member of the National Personnel Committee, and a member of the National Contributors' Committee. Since 1936 she has been a member of the International Committee.

In addition to her Girl Scout activities, Edith is a member of the Executive Committee of the Kenosha Red Cross and Chairman of the Home Service Bureau, the latter being almost a full-time job.

But all this might be omitted, and still Edith would merit her, place in the Hall of Fame. We, standing today on the threshold of our school life, cannot measure, what it has done for us. Only our future life can tell us that." So she spoke in her valedictory forty-seven years ago, and so she has measured up, to her goodly heritage. A gracious, lovely, outgoing Christian woman, Edith herself is the best testimonial a school can have.

It seems entirely fitting to use the words of Edith's valedictory to complete this pensketch. "It is to the routine of our school (lays that we really say farewell, rather than' to the dear scenes and associations of Kemper Hall--we can never say farewell to these! And whatever in our life work shall prove fine and true, will strike its roots deep down into the hidden wells of their pure and gracious influence."

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