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Cape Central High Photos

Ken Steinhoff, Cape Girardeau Central High School Class of 1965, was a photographer for The Tiger and The Girardot, and was on the staff of The Capaha Arrow and The Sagamore at Southeast Missouri State University. He worked as a photographer / reporter (among other things) at The Jackson Pioneer and The Southeast Missourian.

Come here to see photos and read stories (mostly true) about coming of age in Southeast Missouri in the 1960s.

Please comment on the articles when you see I have left out a bit of history, forgotten a name or when your memory of a circumstance conflicts with mine. (My mother says her stories have improved now that more and more of the folks who could contradict her have died off.) Your information helps to make this a wonderful archive and may end up in book form.

Librarians Vogelsang and Wilkening

Cape Central High librarians Mildred Vogelsang, left, and Bonnie Wilkening work on a stack of Plato’s The Republic.

In case you’ve forgotten, The Republic is a Socratic dialogue written around 380 BC concerning the definition of justice and the order and character of the just city-state and the just man. I’d like to tell you that I knew that off the top of my head, but that’s why Al Gore invented the Internet. (Click on any photo to make it larger.)

Who will take the pictures?

Both women signed my 1965 Girardot yearbook. I got a “Best Wishes” from Mrs. Wilkening, but Miss Vogelsang penned, “I shall miss you, Kenny. Who will take the pictures?”

The short answer to that question was the young whippersnapper who followed me: Richard Neal, Tom Hopen, Skip Stiver and Steve Trickey, but I thank her for asking.

A Google search for information about Bonnie Wilkening came up pretty dry. There was a Missourian Sept. 29, 1999, feature, a collection of “You’re from Swampeast Missouri if…” contest entries that included a Bonnie Wilkening contribution, “You update your white styrofoam dice hanging on the rear view mirror of your car to fluorescent orange.” I don’t know if it’s the same person.

Miss Vogelsang died in 1997

The Missourian’s Oct. 31, 1997, obit reported that¬†Mildred Wilhemina Vogelsang, 87, a former teacher, librarian and historian, died Wednesday, Oct. 29, 1997, at Cape Girardeau Residential Care Center. She was born Feb. 7, 1910, in Cape Girardeau, daughter of Henry H. and Hermena Christine Geldmacher Vogelsang.

Vogelsang [This is a departure from the obituary style we followed in my day. We would have used Miss Vogelsang.] was a graduate of Southeast Missouri State University, and received a master’s degree in library science from Vanderbilt University in 1946. She was a teacher in Cape Girardeau Public Schools from 1934-43, then was librarian at Central High School until 1972.

In 1953 she served as president of School Librarians of Southeast Missouri District when it was first organized. She worked on the curriculum committee in the State Department of Education to prepare a Guide for School Libraries. She served as the president of the Missouri Library Association in 1967.  Vogelsang served three terms as trustee of Cape Girardeau Public Library, had been librarian with Historical Association of Greater Cape Girardeau, and was an historian of Old Lorimier Cemetery. She was a member of St. Andrew Lutheran Church.

Survivors include a nephew, James Vogelsang of Cape Girardeau; and a niece, Jane Schueltz of Toledo, Ohio.

Other stories about Miss Vogelsang and libraries

The photo above was taken in Central Junior High School (our old Central)


12 comments to Librarians Vogelsang and Wilkening

  • Carole Schaefer

    OMG, Miss Vogelsang was librarian back at the old Pacific St. H.S.! Mrs. Wescot presided over study hall while Miss Voglesang worked away with student help. That library was always in disorder, but well used.

  • Brad Brune

    I didn’t realize James (Squirrel) Vogelsang was Miss Vogelsang’s nephew. Of course there was a “lot” that went over my head back then.

  • Jane Neumeyer

    Lovely, helpful woman.

  • Mary Lou Brown

    I got detention because I couldn’t keep my mouth shut in study hall. That was 9th grade. By 12th grade I was a library assistant. Guess they didn’t hold that talking thing against me.

  • Hank

    I receive the monthly newsletter from the Evangelical United Church of Christ in Cape. As of the March newsletter Bonnie Wilkening was still alive, but was house bound.

  • My Jr High principal’s name was Donald
    Vogelsang. Not a common name. Mr. Vogelsang
    ,as we all called him,was a WW2 POW.Very stern.

    Jim Luckett

    • jack ronner

      Just a shot in the dark: are you the Jim Luckett who lived in Berkeley, California in the mid 70’s? I recollect him being from Terre Haute originally, then moving to Cape G. later in life, but just in case you’re my old friend, get in touch! Failing that, perhaps you might know him or his family? Thanks.

  • Charlie

    I believe Mrs. Wilkening was librarian when I attended Schultz School for 7th grade.

  • Jane Vogelsang Schuetz

    My Aunt Mil was a wonderful person… plus an excellent librarian. I can remember growing up Aunt Mil spent 12 months a year working in the library. She wanted the library at CHS to be one of the best in the state of Missouri, and it was.



  • Sharon Wieser Searls

    A tribute to one of the “good” influences we
    had growing up.Sharon

  • Jim Luckett

    I lived with a fella named Jack in Berkeley. Also had a cat named macker. My e-mail is

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