Rolfe High School Alumni Web Site: Graphic by Wendy Bennett

What's New 2006
A chronological listing of postings to this site.

What's New
Time Capsules
Essay Section
Rolfe Alumni Reunion 2013
Last Graduation 1990
Where Are They Now
Memorial Board
Memorabilia for Sale
Web Financial Support
Project Credits

Old part of the Rolfe school was razed in 2006.

December 31, 2006

December 10, 2006

  • We have posted a physics paper titled "Overtones, Harmonics, and Fundamentals" by Lawrence Quinsland of the RHS class of 1928. The paper was among the materials that his class left in a time capsule that was opened in July.

December 9, 2006

  • We have returned to the task of posting materials that the class of 1928 had deposited in its time capsule. The item posted today is a term paper titled "Electricity as Power" by Lois Jesse Brinkman (Hodoway).

December 3, 2006

November 30, 2006

November 27, 2006

  • Posted an obituary for Garth Sroufe (RHS 1942), father to RHS graduates: Marc, Diane, and Al.

  • Posted an obituary for Clara Shimon, mother to Ronald, Raymond, Marilyn & Carol Shimon. We will post a more complete obituary when it becomes available.

November 20, 2006

November 16, 2006

October 28, 2006

  • Want to have another all-class reunion in 2010? Nancy Martin (RHS 1951) of the 2005 reunion committee would like to know if there are people who live within driving distance of Rolfe who would like to help plan the 20010 event. It seems, for example, that a couple of people living in the Twin Cities area could work on decorations, and that someone living elsewhere could work on the program. Those kinds of things do happen these days with the aid of telephones and Internet connections. Of course, it is critical to have local people involved with nuts and bolts things such as setting up chairs, etc. So rally forth. If interested in serving, email Nancy.

  • Nancy Martin also wants to know if there is someone from each that that would keep track of his or her classmates addresses. Deane Gunderson keeps tabs on the class of 1935, Ed Weiland on the class of 1945, and Glenn Markley on the class of 1955. If interested in volunteering or offering suggestions, email Nancy.

October 4, 2006

  • Added an obituary for Alvin N. Christensen, RHS School Board member and life long Gilmore City farmer.

September 15, 2006

September 10, 2006

  • A blog-like letter from RHS web site editor, Helen Gunderson. She explains that there is still a ton of material to post from the RHS class of 1928 time capsule and tells why she hasn't yet gotten around to posting it all. The letter meanders from the Rolfe time capsules to harvesting apples at her family homeplace farm in Pocahontas County to progress in moving to her new home in Ames to rural connections and to the value of blogging.

September 10, 2006

Dear RHS alumni, faculty, and other Rolfe loyalists...

A few weeks ago, I made great headway in posting materials from the RHS time capsules. I have finished posting items from the 1917 capsule but have made only a dent in all the files that I digitized from the 1928 capsule. Fortunately, it is a big dent. But rest assured, there is much more to be posted from the latter box. And I will get the job done in the next few months. more

September 2, 2006

August 21, 2006

  • We have added a batch of high school memorabilia that the class of 1928 deposited in its time capsule.

August 16, 2006

  • We have jumped ahead in processing items from the 1928 time capsule and have posted a group photo and program materials from the 50th anniversary reunion of the class of 1928 held in 1978. Those materials include a listing of the graduation and married names of the students. There is also a listing of the birth and death years of seven students and Miss Edna M. Marcum, the class advisor. It was fascinating to learn that the Rolfe native was born in 1886 and died in 1972. That means she was 80 years old when she retired in 1966 from teaching Latin and literature and serving as principal at the Rolfe schools where she had worked since circa1906.

August 15, 2006

  • We are just beginning to post material from the time capsule left by the RHS class of 1928 in one of the pillars near the sidewalk at the south entrance to the three-story school building. You can go first to an introductory page or directly to the page for the 1928 time capsule.

August 11, 2006

  • We have finished posting items from the 1917 time capsule. Today's postings include material from the Rolfe Arrow newspaper on November 16, 1916, and several legal documents related to the bond election for the new school building.

August 10, 2006

  • We have added more items from the 1917 time capsule. Today's postings include material from the Rolfe Arrow newspaper on September 7, 1916: the masthead of the paper with an illustration of the new school, a report on the school bond election, floor plans of the school, an article about families divided by the presidential campaign, and two advertisements.

August 8, 2006

  • We have begun posting material from the time capsules. You can go first to an introductory page or directly to the page for the 1917 time capsule. That's where we started. No material has been posted yet for the 1928 capsule.

August 5, 2006

  • A note from RHS web site editor, Helen Gunderson.

August 5, 2006

Dear RHS alumni, faculty, and other Rolfe loyalists...

I am eager to begin working with the digital files that I made from materials in the time capsules removed from the Rolfe school. However, I am in the midst of moving from an apartment where I have lived for the past 13 years in Gilbert (a small town four miles north of Ames) to a house I bought in an older section of Ames.

I have moved all of my items that I could easily carry  and cart to the new place with my Honda Civic, taking a trip a day for the past week. And I have done mundane things such as putting things in the kitchen cupboards, hanging new shower curtains, getting new locks, and buying a dehumidifier. But there will be a lull in the moving process, while I have a contractor do some upkeep and repairs, before my furniture, computer, and the remnant of basic items will be delivered to the new home.

Hopefully, I will find time during that lull to develop a strategy for the materials from the time capsules and begin posting some items. The bulk of the materials in the time capsules were paper documents that I have scanned at either 300 or 600 dots per inch resolution, depending on the nature of the item. I also photographed a couple of three-dimensional items. And I transferred an audio cassette tape made by the class of 1928 at its reunion in 1968 to a digital file.

Sometimes, once I start a project, I get so interested in the materials and excited about making them available on-line that I work too intensely for too long of hours. I hope that in this case, I can avoid an intense marathon and pace myself, posting a small batch of items once a week for several weeks until I have satisfied myself that the job is well enough done.

I don't know what kinds of interests that visitors to this site have in the materials. Perhaps some of you don't give a rip about the contents of the capsules. Perhaps some of you want to quickly glance at them via your computer screen, and that will satisfy your curiosity. Perhaps some of you want to study the documents in depth but but only on your computer screen. And maybe some of you would like high resolution files in order to make good prints of some documents or burn a CD of the audio tape.

The last scenario will be the most problematic. It will be enough of a challenge to post low resolution files for viewing or listening via a screen. To make high resolution files available will be trickier. But at some point, a set of CDs with the high resolution files will be given to the PAC schools, the Rolfe library, and the Pocahontas library. If you or someone you know wants high resolution files, drop me a note and tell me of your interests.

I am also open to suggestions for posting the materials. So if you have suggestions or questions for this whole process of making copies of the time capsule materials available, please drop me a note.



July 29, 2006

  • RHS web site editor, Helen Gunderson, was in Rolfe earlier this week and spent many long hours at the community center where she scanned a large percentage of the items from the two time capsules that had been removed from the Rolfe school property earlier this year. One box had been in the cornerstone of the three-story, brick building since it was built in 1917. The other box came from one of the two brick pillars at the south entrance to the school. The class of 1928 had built the pillars and left a box there when the class graduated. In 1948, 1968, and 1978, the class opened the box, added to it, and resealed it. In 1978, that year's graduating class was invited to add materials to the box. It will take awhile to figure out how to format the digital files of the scans, but rest assured, the images will be made available to the public. Some will be posted on this site. The entire batch of files will also be available of CDs that will be given to the Pocahontas Area School District and the public libraries in Rolfe and Pocahontas. Arrangements might also be made so that individuals can request CDs (and perhaps specific files) directly from Helen. However, first things first. She has to get away from her computer after so many hours scrunched over it, scanning the documents. The contents of the boxes are currently at the Rolfe library, but the librarians have not been authorized to let the public view the items. For further information about access to viewing the items or about the future of the items, contact PAC superintendent Joe Kramer.

July 26, 2006

  • A correction: Susan Johnson's retirement reception is today July 26. The reception is at the Rolfe State Bank from 9am to 3pm. The public is welcome to attend.

July 22, 2006

  • The Class of 1986 held its first official reunion during Greater Rolfe Days.

  • Started a series of web pages specific to RHS classes, reunion photos, etc.

July 16, 2006

  • Jerry Farlow (RHS 1955) emailed us a list of links to sites related to writing, pronunciation, and word use. Miss Marcum would be proud of his interest as well as ours in such things. And she would probably be mind-boggled that such resources exist and we could have such easy access to them via the Internet..

July 13, 2006

  • We updated the story about the opening of the time capsules.

  • Susan Johnson of the Rolfe class of 1958 is retiring after working for 44 years at the Rolfe State Bank where she is a vice president and cashier. The bank will hold an open house in her honor from 9 am to 3 pm on July 26. The public is welcome to attend.

July 12, 2006

  • We have posted a blog-like story with photos by Helen Gunderson, editor of this web site, about the Greater Rolfe Days parade and opening of the RHS time capsules after the parade. We have also posted a list of the items in the two time capsules.

July 9, 2006

  • The two time capsules from the Rolfe school building were opened yesterday in a ceremony at the Rolfe community center. We hope to post photos, a list of items, perhaps some commentary, and maybe some audio clips from the event later this week.

  • We have posted a new schedule for Ropa's Restaurant. Thanks to co-owner Pamela Harrold-Link for sending the revised information.

July 6, 2006

  • We have modified the list of Rolfe businesses by adding a link to Jennifer Trenary's Longaberger web site. Thanks, Jennifer, for sending us the information.

July 5, 2006

  • We have created and posted a PDF file with the schedule for the Greater Rolfe Days celebration. Events to be held on Thursday through Sunday (July 6 through the 9th). Don't forget that the two time capsules that were removed from the Rolfe school building will be opened after the parade on Saturday at the Rolfe Community Center.

  • On June 29, we received a letter of thanks from Krista Winkleblack for the Rolfe alumni scholarship that she received this spring.

June 27, 2006

  • Jerry Farlow of the class of 1955 has taken pen in hand again and sent us another fun story about life on Main Street in Rolfe in the 1940s. Thanks Jerry.

June 22, 2006

  • Two time capsules from the Rolfe school will be opened following the parade on July 8 during Greater Rolfe Days. One capsule was sealed with the cornerstone of the three-story building constructed in 1917. The other was located in the bottom of one of the pillars placed by the class of 1928 at the south entrance to the school grounds. more

June 14, 2006

  • We have heard of the death of Steve Pedersen of the class of 1963. He was killed in a trucking accident on Monday.

  • We thought you would like to know a little of the lineage of Jacob Brinkman and Krista Winkleblack, who graduated from the Pocahontas Area School District this spring. The two were awarded the first ever Rolfe Alumni Scholarship and received $300 apiece for that honor. update

June 11, 2006

April 16, 2006

  • We have heard of the death of James F. Hauck, age 81, of Des Moines, who died on March 25 at the Des Moines Veterans Hospital. James graduated from RHS in 1942. There is an on-line obituary for him published by Iles Funeral Home. Eventually, we will post the information on this web site.

  • We have also heard of the death of Eva M. Corsair, age 98, of Clarion, who died on April 9, at the USA Health Care Center in Clarion. There was a brief obituary for her in the Fort Dodge Messenger. Eva was a sixth-grade teacher, then a fifth-grade teacher in the Rolfe schools from the mid-1950s to 1972.

April 15, 2006

  • A book recommendation from RHS web site editor, Helen D. Gunderson, (class of 1963): Yesterday, there was an interview with Michael Pollan, author of The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals, on National Public Radio on the Science Friday program of Talk of the Nation. Most of the discussion focused on the corn industry. I believe that the U.S. society in general, but especially people connected to Iowa and Iowa agriculture, should become aware of the issues that Michael presents about our nation's dependency on corn, the effect of corn on nutrition, the true costs of Ethanol, and other topics. more

April 3, 2006

  • Added information (hours, phone number, etc.) about Ropa's Restaurant in Rolfe.

March 17, 2006

  • Added a photo and journal entry by Helen Gunderson, a 1963 RHS graduate and editor of this web site, to the bulletin board page. She recorded the entry on March 15 when she stood at the site of Rolfe's demolished three-story school building and felt a deep and mystical impact from what she saw.

A lot is happening regarding the fate of the gym and the rest of the the school property. We will try to keep you up to date via our message board.

Note on April 16, 2006.

We apologize, but the message board has been malfunctioning. You can read messages that have already been posted, but new messages don't work well due to gremlins in the software. We apologize for any inconvenience.

And we have posted photos taken during the week of January 23, 2006, of the demolition of the three-story section of the Rolfe school that was built in 1917.

We have also posted an archive of articles from the Pocahontas Record-Democrat about the decision to close the Rolfe school.


February 23, 2006

  • Added pictures of Don Cleal to his obituary page.

February 21, 2006

  • Posted an obituary for James J. Taylor, RHS 1940, brother to Wallace, Rosemary, Betty and Marge Taylor Kohl.

February 20, 2006

February 16, 2006

  • We have found it necessary to add some protection to the posting form for our message board. You will still be able to easily access messages submitted by other people, but you will need our generic username and password to post messages. To obtain that information, contact Chris Simonson (RHS 1979) or Helen Gunderson (RHS 1963). We apologize for any inconvenience.

January 28, 2006

  • We have posted two sets of photos of the demolition of the Rolfe school building. One set is by Greg Kaiser (RHS class of 1957) and consists of images that he captured inside the building on the day before demolition began as well as the first attack of a long reach excavator on the southwest part of the building. The other set is by Helen Gunderson (RHS class of 1963), who is the editor of this web site. She was in Rolfe from the afternoon of January 23 through the end of the day on January 26, gathering images.

  • We have added three of this past week's photos of the Rolfe school to our epostcard section and encourage you to visit it and use it to send images and notes to your friends, classmates, family members, and colleagues.

  • We have also established a new message board. Even though we have constructed message boards in the past on this site, they were not used a lot. However, with the current historical happenings of tearing down the Rolfe school building, we thought it would be a good time to encourage on-line correspondence about what is happening and about memories and perspectives.

January 23, 2006

  • The demolition of the three-story portion (built in 1917) of Rolfe Community School began today.

January 20, 2006

January 14, 2006

January 2, 2006

  • We have received word that Don Cleal, a resident of the Rolfe Care Center, died this morning. He was a 1932 graduate of Rolfe High School and a Rolfe area farmer. He was preceded in death by his wife Frances. They are the parents of Joan Cleal Drieth (RHS 1962) of Rolfe and Ann Cleal Bittner (RHS 1966), who owns a gift shop in Pocahontas. We will post Don's obituary when it becomes available.

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