|Birth: ||Nov. 11, 1891|
|Death: ||Mar. 9, 1966|
Excerpts from The Pierre Gerardy Family in America by Evelyn Potter Park, 1979, p. 46:
Grace Clementine Gerardy was born November 11, 1891, near Fact in Goshen Township in Clay County, Kansas, the eldest child of Edward Gerardy and Lissie Drusilla Gross. When she was one year old they moved from Kansas to the Forest community (North Choctaw Township) in Lincoln County, Oklahoma, near Chandler. She attended grade school at Forest School and attended high school for one year at Chandler. At that time it was not necessary for capable students to have a high school diploma in order to attend college, so she went on to Oklahoma A&M College (now called Oklahoma State University) and later attended Central State College (now called Central State University) at Edmond, Oklahoma. When she was just seventeen years old she commenced teaching at the Forest School and later at East View School northwest of Sparks, Oklahoma, only a few miles from the family home at Forest. Between school terms she continued her college education.
On June 9, 1912, she was married to Henry Ray Potter (called Ray). After a pretty wedding at the home of her parents, she and Ray established their first home on the Potter farm in Kickapoo Valley [which Ray's father owned. A daughter, Evelyn, was born to them there on July 15, 1913, and a son, Harold, on Feb 13, 1915.]
Excerpts from Memories From Evelyn's Life, by Ray's daughter, Evelyn Potter Park, 1993:
Mother said the summer I was a year old she was still nursing me when she became pregnant with Harold. In the heat of the summer she was afraid I'd get "summer complaint" (or diarrhea) which killed so many babies at that time. The doctor assured her I'd be fine if they would just tie the cow up close to the house and she could go milk the cow for enough milk for a feeding. They said it ruined the cow, but that I made it through the summer all right. I guess all that story proves is that I was more valuable to them than the cow!
When Harold was born Mother and Dad were living on the adjoining farm that his father [Henry Albert Potter] later bought, and which he eventually sold to my other grandfather, Edward Gerardy. I remember hearing the story that it was so bitterly cold when Harold was born that they had to hang quilts around Mother's bed to keep the cold wind from her bed. Soon afterward they moved to the big house on the original farm into the two-story house Grandfather had built when he came from Kansas in 1904.
It was great fun to go with mother hunting turkey egg nests along the branch that ran through the farm. And in the fall we would pick up pecans when they fell to the ground. One Christmas the men were clearing timber from along the same branch. Many of the trees had great clumps of mistletoe in them. Mother tied those clumps to the bare limbs of a tree that reached nearly to the ceiling. I still have a mental picture of that tree standing in the southwest corner of the living room — the most beautiful Christmas tree I'd ever seen.
In 1918 they purchased a hotel in Sparks. Though the hotel is a strange place to remember as "home" during my growing-up years, I recall it as a very happy place. My mother and father were still young and there were always young people staying there it seemed — teachers, telegraph operators, oil field workers, etc. There was always lots of singing and music around. I used to wish I was grown-up, too, so I could join in the fun! The hotel was big enough that we usually had big family gatherings there and almost always at Christmas. We had lots of beds and rooms for everyone so they could stay all night. We always had a big garden back of the hotel and grew lots of potatoes.
Excerpts from The Pierre Gerardy Family in America:
Grace managed the hotel, while Ray farmed , owned a taxi service, became an oil lease broker, delivered a rural mail route, and worked for a while in the oil field at Davenport.
In 1926 Ray purchased a wholesale gasoline agency at Chandler and built a successful business which he owned until his death. He also bought 500 acres of land nearby on Deep Fork Creek where he raised fine Hereford cattle. [In 1927 Grace sold the hotel, and the family moved to Chandler.]
[On August 13, 1953, Ray died suddenly of a heart attack. Shortly thereafter, Grace invited her widowed mother, Lissie Gerardy, to live with her, which she did until her death in 1960.]
In 1957 when her eldest two granddaughters were graduating from Chandler High School, Grace transferred her college credits back to that school so she, too, could be a Chandler High School graduate along with her brother, sisters, children & grandchildren.
Grace was always busy in social, civic, church, and political activities. She served as clerk of the school board at Sparks for several years. During World War II she returned to teaching at Chandler and Sparks. She and Ray had friendly out-going personalities which made them many friends, and they were kind and loving toward their family and friends.
Excerpt from The Lincoln County News, June, 1957:
Grandmother of two grads will get delayed diploma
In addition to the regular class the grandmother of the valedictorian and salutatorian will receive her diploma [from Chandler High School]. Mrs. Grace Potter would have graduated with the class of 1909, had she continued with her original class. However, she left school and began teaching. For the next five years she alternated teaching and attending school.
Since her marriage in 1912 to the late H. R. Potter, her life has been devoted to rearing a family, community and church work and five more years of teaching. Last fall she applied for graduation at midterm and won her diploma.
Excerpts from Grace's obituary in The Lincoln County News, March 17, 1966:
Grace C. Potter Buried Saturday
Mrs. Grace Clementine Potter, of Chandler died Wednesday, March 9, in Chandler. Services were held Saturday morning at the Chandler Funeral Home Chapel with Rev. Dean Miller, pastor of the First Methodist Church officiating.
Survivors include one son, Harold H. Potter, and one daughter, Evelyn Park, both of Chandler; one brother, Loren Gerardy of Chandler; two sisters, Mrs. Myrtle Pinkston of Arkansas City, Kansas and Mrs. Christel Brown of Oklahoma City; five grandchildren, Philip Potter of Norman, Margaret Park of Columbus, Ohio, Marilyn Park of Tulsa, Mrs. Ruth Anne Helm and Roger Park, both of Chandler; and three great grandchildren, Sandra, Deborah and Wade Helm of Chandler.
Edward Gerardy (1865 - 1942)
Lissie Drusilla Gross Gerardy (1870 - 1960)
Henry Ray Potter (1892 - 1953)*
Evelyn Grace Potter Park (1913 - 2000)*
Harold Henry Potter (1915 - 1976)*
Grace Clementine Gerardy Potter (1891 - 1966)
Pearlie Christine Gerardy (1897 - 1899)*
Myrtle Lena Gerardy Pinkston (1899 - 1984)*
Golda May Gerardy (1903 - 1911)*
Edward Loren Gerardy (1905 - 1994)*
Lissie Christel Gerardy Brown (1909 - 1999)*
Grace C. Potter
Oak Park Cemetery
Plot: Section 16, Lot 64
Maintained by: Darrell Brown
Originally Created by: Heartland Volunteer
Record added: Feb 09, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 65444955