Graham Hartley Woolfall

by Natalie from Laguna Beach

What is a hero, someone might ask. A hero is a person or animal who never gives up and tries very hard; they are good at what they do, and they are willing and heroic. They may be anyone you look up to or admire. A hero makes a difference in the world and that is what makes them so special.

Superman, Wonder Woman, and Batman -- they are all great heroes. They do the right thing and that is what makes them a hero. They are great, but I know a better hero -- my great grandfather, Graham Hartley Woolfall. To you he seems normal, but to me he is much more than normal.

He was born on October 1, 1898, like any other normal person, with no idea of how much of a difference he would make in the world as an architect. He was born to Hartley Woolfall (his dad), who owned the Woolfall Publishing Company on Park Avenue in New York City, and Lila Alliger (his mom), who wrote The Ladies of the White House, which is in The National Library of Congress in Washington, DC. He had three brothers: Herbert, Fredrick (who went by Eric), and Mortimer. He went to the University of Columbia in New York. He did not have enough money to get a degree in college, so he took appropriate classes in architecture. When he got out of school he worked for a private architect in Denver, Colorado. Then he took an exam to see if he would qualify for the chief architect of The United States of America and he passed!

He worked in the Office of the Supervising Architect of the Treasury, and he designed many things all over the world. A few of the things were for Fort Knox and the Federal Triangle. He designed post offices throughout the U.S., including Denver, Colorado and in Anchorage, Alaska. He met the emperor of Ethiopia, Emperor Haile Selassie. He helped him pick a spot for a hospital they were about to design and build.

My great grandfather had two kids with his wife, Winifred. They were named Barbra and Beverly. He ate ice cream every night before he went to bed and once ate 102 small pancakes! Sadly, he died on April 20, 1994. All in all, he had a wonderful life, was a great architect and excellent great grandfather to me.

What a great man! He is my hero because of how good he was at his job! He inspires me to do and be just like him. I admire him because after World War II he designed homes for sick and wounded soldiers. He also designed hospitals in Europe and the Middle East. Because of all these great things he did, he is my hero and always will be!

Page created on 6/30/2007 12:00:00 AM

Last edited 1/5/2017 10:49:44 PM

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