Photo Friday: A Quiet Force

She was petite and reserved, the constant helpmate of her husband George Booth, but Ellen Scripps Booth (1863-1948) was a powerhouse in her own right. It was Ellen who insisted that a girl’s school be built so that her granddaughters could get a good education. In January 1928, Ellen gifted $200,000 to the Cranbrook Foundation for the building of Kingswood School for Girls. She would later contribute more to ensure the project reached completion.

Known for her modesty, strong religious values, and devotion to her family, Ellen was a steadfast force in the Cranbrook community, and beyond.

~Robbie Terman, archivist

Ellen Scripps Booth, c.1914. Cranbrook Archives

Ellen Scripps Booth, c.1914. Cranbrook Archives

Photo Friday: Maija and Nelly

Maija Grotell and Nelly Beveridge at work on the base of a fountain, 1940.

Maija Grotell and Nelly Beveridge at work on the base of a fountain, 1940. Richard P. Raseman, Historical Photograph Collection, Cranbrook Archives.

Finnish-born ceramicist Maija Grotell served as the head of the Ceramics Department at the Cranbrook Academy of Art from 1938 to 1966.  Here, she works on the base of a fountain with student Nelly Beveridge.  Beveridge played many roles on campus, serving as a companion and nurse to George and Ellen Booth in their later years even as she completed her studies at the Academy.

Welcome to the Kitchen Sink!

A Home Economics classroom from Kingswood School, 1932.  Ironically, there's no kitchen sink in sight.

Home Economics classroom at Kingswood School, 1932. Cranbrook Archives.

Welcome to the Cranbrook Kitchen Sink!  This is our very first post, so please bear with us as we explain what we’re doing here and get all excited.  If we had glitter, we’d be throwing it right now.

The Cranbrook Kitchen Sink is an exciting new undertaking for the Cranbrook Center for Collections and Research.  And what is the Cranbrook Center for Collections and Research, you might ask?  Well, we’re essentially a department of archivists and historians who focus on all things Cranbrook.  We’re charged with interpreting the history of this unique educational community, from its founding in 1908 as a country estate for George and Ellen Booth to its current incarnation as a 319-acre campus that includes a prestigious private school, a science museum, a graduate art academy and an art museum.  Also three historic houses, legendary gardens, architecture with National Historic Landmark status, a world-class art collection, and an archive so in-depth you could get lost in it for days…. you get the idea.  This is a big place with a lot of history, and we’re here to cover it all.

So what will you find at the Cranbrook Kitchen Sink?  Well, everything but the!  We want the Kitchen Sink to be a place where Cranbrook Center and Archives staff can post about their research, report back on cool and interesting documents or stories we’ve uncovered, and get just a sliver of the amazing material that makes up Cranbrook’s 100+ year history out into the wider world.  We’re here to tell you the stories you  haven’t heard about this strange, incredible place called Cranbrook.  So sit back, relax, and enjoy all things Cranbrook!

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