Fordtran Family Collection, 1908-circa 1965
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Brief Description: The Fordtran Family Collection contains materials of the Fordtran/Wherley/Barkley family. The items were among the personal effects of Lola Belle (Barkley) and Eugene Fordtran. Material related to Rockford High School is a large part of the collection and includes student published periodicals and newsletters when Fred and Marie Barkley (1908-09) and Dorthy Wherley (1945) attended the school. The collection also contains records related to Lola Belle (Barkley) Fordtran’s attendance at Northern Illinois State Teachers College (NISTC) from 1938-1942. These materials include NISTC publications, catalogues, and programs as well as Lola Belle’s registration forms, room contacts, class assignments, and textbooks. The collection also includes photographs. Two from 1920 capture Wherley family members: Norman, Mary, Bertha, and Ruben Gunther, Sr. The 1940s photo shows Lorayne Wherley with her bowling league group. Also included are writing samples of Frances Conklin French. F.C. French was an alias used by Peggy French, a dear friend of Lola Belle.
Held at:
Northern Illinois University
Founders Memorial Library
Northern Illinois University
DeKalb, IL 60115
Phone: 815-753-1779
Email: rhcua [at]
Record Series Number: RHC/RC/330
Volume: 1.5 Linear Feet
Acquired: 01/30/2013. Additional materials were donated on January 29, 2014; November 24, 2015; and Novemeber 22, 2017.
Access Restrictions: There are no restrictions on access to the collection.
Subject Index
Fordtran Family
Home Economics
Northern Illinois State Teachers College
Northern Illinois University
Rockford High School
Winnebago County (Ill)
Languages of Materials
English [eng]
German [ger]
Rights/Use Restrictions: Property rights to the materials belong to the Regional History Center; literary rights in the collection are dedicated to the public.
Acquisition Notes: Lynette and Judy Wherley  donated the Fordtran family records to the Regional History Center on January 31, 2013.
Related Materials: RC 349 Help-One-Another Circle. For more information please see