Thursday, April 14, 2011

Oral History: Roy Bergengren, Jr.

While recently mucking about on-line, I stumbled upon the transcript of an oral history interview of Roy Bergengren's son, Roy Bergengren, Jr., which had been conducted in 1975. At the time, the younger Bergengren was the recently retired president of a junior college in Florida, and the bulk of the interview focuses on that experience. However, the biographical background information that he lays out in the first few pages provides some intriguing tidbits for credit union historians by offering a quick glimpse at what it was like to be Bergengren's child and outlining his own brief involvement in the organized credit union movement. I've excerpted the passage in which he discusses the latter; if you want to check out the full interview, you can read it on the University of Florida's website.

P: What did you do after [graduating from Dartmouth in 1936].

B: After that, I went to work for my father, who was at that time, head of the Credit Union National Association in Madison Wisconsin. And the National Organization of Credit Unions was just starting, and they had a very small staff, and they needed somebody to edit their little monthly magazine [ed. note: the Credit Union Bridge]. So I started editing a monthly magazine for $15 a week. I kept that for about three years, and I decided that it wasn't the best thing in the world to work for your father, despite my respect and love for him, so I went to work on a newspaper in Madison, Wisconsin... (Page 2)

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