Oct 5: Delaware 4-H Hall of Fame

September 24, 2012 under Cooperative Extension

The Delaware 4-H Foundation will induct 27 pioneers of 4-H work in Delaware into its inaugural Hall of Fame Class in a ceremony to be held at the Diamond Room at Dover Downs on Friday, October 5, 2012 at 7:00 p.m. This initial class of inductees represents Delawareans who made notable contributions to Delaware 4-H in its first 50 years of existence, from 1914-1964.

In the past 100 years, tens of thousands of Delaware youth have participated in the Delaware 4-H program, many going on to notable careers in business, industry and politics.

The first 4-H work was done in Delaware prior to the passage of the Smith-Lever Act in 1914, but wasn’t formalized until then. Delaware was the first state to have county agents in each county and youth work began almost immediately with staff working in the agriculture department at then Delaware College. The early pioneers included Nellie Snyder of Newport who began the first work with boys and girls in canning and gardening in 1914.

Agnes Medill was the first girl’s club 4-H agent and was responsible for starting 4-H garden and canning clubs throughout the state. She traveled the state in her Model T “Lizzie’ and became renowned for her work. World War I made the production and preservation of food at home a high priority as so much of American agricultural production was shipped overseas for the war effort.

The first organized 4-H club was the Houston Cardinals in 1915 with George Dewey Sapp as its first member. The club still exists and thrives today.

Other notable inductees include former Governor Ruth Ann Minner, former State Senator Thurman Adams and Dr. George Worrilow, former Dean of the College of Agriculture at the University of Delaware. Among the inductees will also be seven Delawareans who have already been inducted into the National 4-H Hall of Fame.

Tickets to the event are available from the Delaware 4-H Foundation at http://ag.udel.edu/extension/4h/awards/halloffame_ticketform.html. Tickets are $30 and include refreshments, entertainment (with a 1920’s flair) and a visual history of the early days of Delaware 4-H.

For more information on the Delaware 4-H Hall of fame contact: Mark J. Manno, State 4-H program Leader (mmanno@udel.edu) at 302-831-2997.

2012 Delaware 4-H Hall of Fame Pioneer Class

  • Thurman Adams
  • Jim Baker
  • Martha Benson
  • Floyd Blessing
  • Ann Clendaniel
  • Ralph Clendaniel
  • Alex Cobb
  • Helen Comstock
  • Dorothy Emerson
  • “Pop” Fields
  • Sam Gwinn
  • John Hastings
  • Cliff Hufnal
  • Pauline Hufnal
  • Mabel Lambden
  • Marion MacDonald
  • Theodore Martin
  • Agnes Medill
  • Ruth Ann Minner
  • M.O. Pence
  • George Dewey Sapp
  • Larry Shaffer
  • Nellie Snyder
  • Joy Sparks
  • Linda Sullivan
  • Isaac Thomas
  • Sylvia Walther
  • William Walther
  • George Worrilow
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