Olive Rachel Hester, 1892-1979 [RG6260.AM]


RG6260.AM:  Olive Rachel Hester, 1892-1979

Diary: 1915-1919
Norden, Keya Paha County, Nebraska
Size:  One diary


Born at Thurman, Iowa, on April 2, 1892, to James and Emily (Golden) Hester, Olive Hester moved with her family to Coleridge, Nebraska, when she was four months old.  She attended public school in Coleridge through the eleventh grade.  The family moved to Chadron, Nebraska, where she graduated in 1910.  Olive attended Doane College at Crete, Nebraska, from 1910 to 1914, graduating with a bachelor’s degree.  From 1914 to 1916 she homesteaded at Norden, Nebraska, and taught school in a one room schoolhouse.  She then moved and taught school at Cody, Wyoming, from 1916 to 1918.

Olive moved to Carson, Louisiana, in 1918 to join her parents and siblings.  She taught school at Longville, Louisiana, from 1918 to 1919.  In 1919 she moved to Birmingham, Alabama, beginning as a teacher and becoming Director of Social Work for the Tennessee Coal and Iron Company and principal of the mine elementary school.  In 1922 she returned to Louisiana, teaching high school English and Latin at Deridder, Louisiana.  From 1925 to 1929 Olive worked in the YWCA Adult Education program at Houston, Texas.  In 1929 she returned to Lafayette, Louisiana, where she taught high school biology.  Olive received her MA degree from Louisiana State University in 1935.  She continued to teach biology at Lafayette High School until 1947.

From 1947 to 1958 Olive served as a professor of biology, zoology and botany at Southwestern Louisiana Institute.  During this time she also did some postgraduate work at Cornell University and the University of London.  From 1959 to 1964 Olive taught biology at Sacred Heart Academy in Grand Coteau, Louisiana.  After retiring, she returned to Lafayette, Louisiana.  Olive Rachel Hester died in Lafayette, Louisiana, on April 18, 1979.  She was survived by several nieces and nephews.  She is buried in the Protestant Cemetery at Lafayette, Louisiana.


This collection consists of one diary of Olive Rachel Hester.  Entries in the diary date from 1915-1919.  They cover part of the time that she homesteaded and taught school in the Nebraska Sandhills, as well as time teaching in Cody, Wyoming, Longville, Louisiana and Birmingham, Alabama.  Also included are several pages of biographical information.

Note:  See the photo component [RG6260.PH] for a photo album relating to her time in the Nebraska Sandhills.


Diary of Olive Rachel Hester, 1915-1919


Subject headings:

Frontier and pioneer life
Hester, Olive Rachel, 1892-1979


TMM         10-12-2023

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