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Biography of Albert Irven Decker

Albert Irven Decker. In the demands which it makes upon its devotees, educational work is exceedingly exacting. The duty of the educator, ostensibly, is to instill a practical, working knowledge into each of his pupils, but his correlative, although less direct, function of instilling character and worthy precepts through his personal influence is equally important. The duty first named calls for an individual of knowledge and specialized training, while the second demands a conscientious and capable person whose life and mode of living provide a fit criterion and example for the minds of youth. When a man is found in whose character are combined these attributes, the early and formative years of future citizens may be safely placed in his care. Such a man is Albert Irven Decker, superintendent of the city schools of Fredonia, a position which he had held for six years, and an educator who had devoted his entire life to his calling. Albert I. Decker was born at Burnside, Hancock County, Illinois, September 4, 1876, and is a son of J. E. and Eda Ruth (Perkins) Decker. The family is of Holland Dutch origin and originally spelled the name “Dekker,” but upon locating in Pennsylvania, in Colonial times, changed the spelling to its present form. Elisha Decker, the grandfather of Professor Decker, was born in Pennsylvania, became a pioneer of Hancock County, Illinois, and engaged in farming near Burnside, where he died at the age of forty-two years, prior to the birth of his grandson. While he did not live to mature years, he was a man of industry and possessed of good business ability,...

Biography of George L. Atkeson

George L. Atkeson. To those parents who value the intellectual development of their children, it is a matter of vital importance that in the early and formative period of their lives, their instructors in the public schools should be thoroughly qualified for such responsibility in scholarly attainments and in personal character. In securing so widely known and so experienced an educator as George L. Atkeson as superintendent of their city schools, the good people of Altoona, Kansas, displayed exceptional wisdom. Intelligent public opinion here, as at other points, makes more insistent demands, asks for more decided results than in old days, a realization having come that the needs of future generations must not be imperiled by any narrowing of public school education in the present. A wider and deeper service is demanded than ever before, and to this field of effort a welcome is given the able, the understanding, the progressive educational leader, a worthy example of this class being found in George L. Atkeson. He is a native of Missouri, born near Tipton, in Morgan County, September 20, 1866. His parents were Francis M. and Mary A. (Frye) Atkeson. Francis M. Atkeson was born in 1830, near Charleston in Kanawha County, West Virginia, in which section the early ancestors of the family had settled after coming from England. His father, Andrew Atkeson, was also born in what is now West Virginia, and from there, probably in 1832, removed with his family to Morgan County, Missouri. He became a farmer there and operated the first blacksmith shop in Tipton. Practically Francis M. Atkeson spent his entire life near Tipton,...

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