This collection contains a 1930 yearbook, pictures, a pin, and a letter written by Dorothy's daughter, Betty Tschappat.
Dorothy Martin Vellinga was born in Ogden in 1910 to an impoverished family, which had emigrated from Amsterdam, Holland in 1904. Soon after Dorothy's birth, her father deserted the family. Her mother, Marie Martin, supported her family as well as she could, but left much of the raising of the children to themselves.
Dorothy was very much affected by her poverty and the struggles of her mother and was determined to rise above the cold and hunger and deprivation of her youth. As a result, at a very young age, Dorothy left home and entered domestic service. She remembered working long, hard hours under strict living conditions and controls for, among others, the Dr. and Mrs. Leslie S. Merrill family. The Merrills became Dorothy's family and she loved and respected them, celebrating their successes and mourning their loss of a son in the 1941 Pearl Harbor attack. Dorothy worked, cleaned, cooked, and was au pair while, at the same time, attended and graduated from high school and then Weber College. She graduated with an Associate of Science in 1930. Dorothy wanted, above all, to teach and thereby establish her independence. However, her childhood sweetheart, John Vellinga, who had himself left home to attend high school and college in Chicago, Illinois proposed to Dorothy "for the last time." She accepted his proposal, married, and moved to Chicago, Illinois where John finished his Mechanical Engineering Degree at the Illinois Institute of Technology. After raising two children and many years of struggle, John established his own injection-molding plant, Elgin Molded Plastics, and became a moderately successful businessman. He died August 23, 1987. Dorothy died on November 3, 1999.
Dorothy's oldest sister, Betty, married Ken Mills and lived on the Mills' farm in Ogden. This farm property was sold to Weber in 1947 and became part of the new Harrison campus.
This Collection is indexed under the following controlled access subject terms.
Conditions Governing Access:
The collection is open for research use.
Material was acquired from Betty Tschappat (2000-019).
[Item identification], Dorothy Martin memorabilia, 27-01-001, Weber State University Archives, Ogden, Utah.