By Rachel Renaud
Besides my work in editing documents on MBDA, I work for Dr. Snider of the Berry History Department. One of my many tasks for her includes updating the bulletin board outside her office. Each semester there is a new theme that is researched and developed into a board display. This past semester I’ve been researching the names engraved on the classroom and office doors in Evans Hall. Most of these names represent a child who donated to the Berry Schools in honor of their mother, whose name appears on a door. While researching these names, I used the MBDA site to see if I could find any interesting relationship between the donor and the Berry Schools.
While researching Sarah Orr and her daughter Lena McCray, I found a letter from Robert C. Alston. In the letter Mr. Alston giving names of possible donors, one of which is Mrs. McCray. The letter mentions how Mrs. McCray’s husband owns the McCray Refrigeration Company, but further research found that there is so much more to that.
The McCray Refrigeration Company established a new standard of refrigeration, and produced some of the first modern, sanitary refrigerators. It seems like such a trivial matter, but I find it interesting to see how many people Martha Berry interacted with and the unique roles those people played in history. There’s no telling how many other letters in MBDA have gone to people with small, but important parts in history.