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Evelyn Lockhart Hurlburt

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BENNINGTON -- A celebration of the life of Mrs. Evelyn Lockhart Hurlburt is scheduled for Sunday, Dec. 4, at 2 p.m. at the First Baptist Church, 601 Main St.

The Rev. Norma Drosky, pastor of the United Baptist Church of East Poultney, is scheduled to lead the celebration. Interment is scheduled for Dec. 3 in Park Lawn Cemetery.

Mrs. Hurlburt, who died in Rockville, Md., Nov. 19, of complications from pneumonia, was a longtime Bennington resident.

Born Dec. 12, 1915, in Caribou, Maine, she was the eldest child of Harley and Gladys Lockhart. She spent her childhood in Pugwash, Nova Scotia, Canada, before moving back to Caribou with her family in 1926. She worked at the Caribou Public Library in high school and graduated at age 16 from Caribou Public High School as class valedictorian. She spent a year studying library science at the Maine State Library in Augusta before moving to Bennington to join the staff of the Bennington Free Library in 1937.

She married Paul R. Hurlburt of Bennington at the First Baptist Church on Feb. 21, 1941. From 1947 to 1948, she wrote columns for publisher Frank “Ginger” Howe’s “Travel Talk” in the Bennington Evening Banner.

In 1958 she became the first elementary school librarian in Vermont when she accepted a position as school librarian at the Bennington Elementary School. She worked there until her retirement in 1980. During this time she led the book selection committee for the statewide Dorothy Canfield Fisher reading program, which published an annual list of children’s books and gave the children an opportunity to vote for their favorite book. With a state grant, she also published a book titled “Back Tracking,” for which children interviewed Bennington area adults and wrote about their occupations. She was a member of the Delta Kappa Gamma honorary educational sorority.

Mrs. Hurlburt earned her bachelor’s degree in English magna cum laude in 1973 at North Adams State College in Massachusetts.

In 1980 she and her husband, Paul, moved to Pawleys Island, S.C., where he died three years later. Remaining in South Carolina until 2000, Mrs. Hurlburt was president of the Friends of the Waccamaw Library, through which she organized cultural programs and led an annual sale of donated books. She was also a docent for 10 years at Brookgreen Gardens, which displays classical American sculpture on a former rice plantation. She read stories to a Head Start group for many years, served as historian and librarian at Pawleys Island Presbyterian Church, and enjoyed literature with others through the Great Books program. The Sun News of Myrtle Beach, S.C., honored her as one of eight volunteers of the year in January 1989. A square dancer with the Catamount Gadabouts in Vermont, she continued dancing with the Ocean Waves Square Dance Club of Georgetown, S.C., played golf and traveled to Asia, Europe and South America.

For the last five years, Mrs. Hurlburt lived near Washington, D.C., in suburban Maryland.

Mrs. Hurlburt leaves a brother, Charles Lockhart of Hillsboro, Ore., and two sisters, Natalie Beveridge of South Portland, Maine, and Ardes Burnes of Quincy, Mass.; four children, Dr. Harley Hurlburt of Slidell, La., Paul Hurlburt Jr. of Bethesda, Md., Lillian Hurlburt Thompson of Bethesda and Roy Hurlburt of St. Louis; a step-granddaughter, Cristi Cunningham Zaghia of Lausanne, Switzerland; two grandchildren, Ethan Hurlburt of San Francisco and Laura Hurlburt of St. Louis; and nephews, nieces and cousins.

Memorials in her honor may be made to the Caribou Public Library, 30 High St., Caribou, ME 04736; the library at Bennington Elementary School, 128 Park St., Bennington, VT 05201; or the Friends of the Waccamaw Library, P.O. Box 1152, Pawleys Island, SC 29585.
Published in Bennington Banner on Nov. 29, 2005
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