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American History
Accredited Records


      If Mr. Correll was father-figure to a thousand students, then certainly, Dr. Wall was the favorite uncle. This was what enabled him to get implemented the things he wanted to do directly at the beginning of his job at Chilocco Indian School in the year of 1956.

      He never intimidated me.  The mature man treated me much like my family  would have. I was willing to do whatever he put in front of me, no matter how little I understood what the work involved.  One by one the larger than legal forms were inserted into the long carriage of a manual typewriter in order to be filled out. This was the beginning of the paper work required to record, list, document all the education each and every one hundered and twenty-one employee on campus had or didn't have. These requirements were necessary to see that the school became a fully accredited high school. It never occurred to me to wonder why someone in plant maintenance would need to have all their certification listed. It was simply on the form and had to be completed. If that person was lacking in one or another schooling then it was his business to necessarily go for classes to get that certificate. In my youthful place it was easy for me to call that person to arrange for a time to bring in the papers when they had them in their hand. Those employees were glad to comply with a secretary who was obviously a kid and only following directions. Their ego was not a bit bruised. Dr. Wall was quick in using me in that way. Probably if the regular secretary had been on duty it wouldn't have gone so smoothly. There might have been all kinds of back tracking and trying to cover over this or that missing paperwork. In a way this was a good preparation for them as well as the school. It wasn't for less than twenty years the school closed but an employee forced out of work by that closing did have his qualifications in hand. I knew none of this. It was my duty to do the typing, fill out the forms and track and back track each and every employee to get everything done.

       Some in the office were like wall-eyed horses as they kept looking askance at the particular project.  At the time I didn't understand this either. Such are the blessings of youth.

     Another project Dr. Wall had was the cleaning out of the file cabinets. This was not so easy. It was a tedious work to sort things in order to send valuable records  to the Ft. Worth National Archives and to discard other things that were, maybe just one,  sheet of paper with one line. No names, dates, or particular understanding involved made the information useless. The former secretary now on leave was skilled, grounded in the meticulous,  regarding government regulations, person. Never would she have attempted such a thing. Paperwork can be sacred to a certain worker.  Because I had nothing like this in my mentality, Dr. Wall used my hands to work through all of it. In fact one of the older secretaries still living on campus was so outraged at the work she made it her business to walk into the office and quietly complain.

      “What is happening to the files?”  She asked

      Remember the former encounter with a sage department head?  I was equally as careful of this woman. She had worked a life time in the office and I wasn't about to cross her.

     “Dr. Wall is sending them to Ft. Worth to the archives.”  It was my turn to look at her like a wall-eyed horse.

      “Are you sure he isn't just throwing them away?”  Her level look made me know I had better make no bones in a straight answer.

      “Oh yes, I'm sure.”  I reached down to the stack of papers to be discarded and pulled a sick little record with nothing but one line stating one of the students had reported to the hospital that morning. No name and no date made it worth nothing. Of course there was a hospital from early on so that wasn't even a vital record. I then pointed to the other pile of paper work all bundled and addressed with the Ft. Worth address.

       The woman, who was now becoming elderly and full of wisdom, seemed to be satisfied. She didn't even request to see Dr. Wall as she turned to leave. I was relieved.

      Years later after the closing when there was paper strewn all over the floor of the main office I pointed this out to the caretaker.  He bundled those up and mailed them to Ft. Worth. One of the things he mailed was a huge, ancient book of records. My grandmother's name was written in it with beautiful cursive. That is in the archives, too.


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