Henry J. Young Award - Barbara Ann (Wolf) Rudy, June 2011
Reflect on the year 1940: a postage stamp was 3 cents, bakers bread cost 8 cents a loaf, gasoline was 18 cents per gallon, minimum wage was 30 cents per hour, and the average annual salary was $1,900.00, and a new home cost $6,550.00, while a new car was $800.00. Plus, the first McDonald’s stand was opened.
World events of 1940: World War II was gaining momentum; Nazis established a Jewish ghetto in Lodz, Poland; Britain began rationing sugar, meat, and butter; Buckingham Place was bombed with minor damage. Winston Churchill became Britain’s Prime Minister.
In the United States: Franklin Delano Roosevelt was president; in Tennessee the Great Smokey Mountains National Park was dedicated; the first United States turnpike opened in Pennsylvania; and the first social security benefit checks were paid.
Gone with the Wind won 8 academy awards; including best picture of 1939, and Hattie McDaniel won best supporting actress and was the first black performer to receive an Oscar. Walt Disney’s second features length movie, Pinocchio, premiered in New York City. The Tom and Jerry cartoon “Puss gets the Boot” debuted by MGM, and went on to win 7 academy awards. Bugs Bunny made his official debut in the Warner Brothers animated cartoon “A Wild Hare” and everyone became familiar with the line “What’s up Doc?” John Steinbeck received a Pulitzer Prize for “Grapes of Wrath”. Radio was still the popular source of home information and entertainment. The first broadcast of “Truth or Consequences” was heard on CBS. The Big Band Era continued: “In the Mood” by Glenn Miller was a number one hit. Swing also continued as the popular dance style. A new trend would begin; the first televised baseball game on WGN-TV featured the White Sox verses the Cubs in exhibition. The 1940 Olympics were cancelled. Special interest: nylon stockings went on general sale for the first time in the United States. A synthetic rubber tire was unveiled. Willy’s unveiled its general purpose vehicle, the “Jeep”. For the first time in The United States, 75,000 men were called to Armed Forces duty under peace time conscription.
Now, for a few newcomers in 1940: Jack Nicklaus; Tom Brokaw; and Ricky Nelson, and a baby girl born to Louise nee Hendershot and Preston Elsworth Wolf. The Wolf parents named their first child, Barbara Ann. She lived with her family in a second floor apartment at 469 West College Avenue, York, Pennsylvania. City life allowed Barbara to acquire many friends. Walking to school with neighbors and friends made life in the city enjoyable for Barbara. At the age of 13, Barbara’s family moved to the suburbs of Dover Township. More new friends were added while attending Dover High School. Barbara Ann Wolf graduated with some of her closest friends in 1959 from the Dover High School.
On March 5, 1960 Barbara had her name changed and added a new title to her life “MRS.” The next big step in Barbara’s life was becoming a mother which never ends. As years went by, never the same routine as the children grew older. Home, became the “hang out” spot for many school students. Friends and children could count on Barbara for great meals, and snacks, especially after Barbara baked cookies.
July 22, 1977 was the start of a long awaited vacation and special day, Barbara married Charles Eugene Rudy in the state of Wyoming. What a memorable place to get married and then to honeymoon. Barbara at this time was mother to two daughters and four sons. Today, Barbara’s family has grown to include eight grandchildren and four great grandchildren. Barbara has always been active in the lives of her family.
In 1988, Barbara started to research the history of her family. Barbara joined the South Central Pennsylvania Genealogy Society in 1987. A variety of seminars were attended by Barbara to learn more about searching her family history. Travel became a great tool for Barbara to search, meet, and find more family members. Vacation trips to Florida; Barbara was able to visit children, but she made time to use libraries to help increase her base of historical findings. Some other areas visited; were Michigan, Washington DC., New Jersey, and Kentucky. Canada held a great key to unlocking much of that Hendershot family history.
Barbara attended many South Central Pennsylvania Genealogical Society meetings. In 1990, Barbara was named to the nominating committee and has served ever since. Barbara has been a helpful board member, assisting with many special projects, such as opening old orphan court records for better preservation and to be available to the public. As a member of South Central Pennsylvania Genealogical Society, Barbara began as a volunteer for the York County Historical Society in January 1989. The library was located in the mezzanine area in 1989. A new library space was under way and a temporary move with much of the more frequently requested items were moved to the meeting room. Barbara worked with visitors as well as with the move of the historical society’s collection. Next move was to the new library area. Another move occurred after the York County Historical Society became The York County Heritage Trust, then allowing much needed space for the library to expand.
Barbara is a faithful, helpful, loyal volunteer, representing South Central Pennsylvania Genealogical Society. Membership applications to South Central Pennsylvania Genealogical Society and other organization are frequently given to visitors at the library. Being a busy volunteer, Barbara finds time to review new materials and unfamiliar materials as she returns them to their assigned places. As heard many times, if it were not for Barbara we would not be involved with South Central Pennsylvania Genealogical Society or even a volunteer helping in the library.
So, we honor you today for your many contributions to the preservation of history and genealogy.