Winifred Vogt, champion of civil rights, literacy, children

Winifred Dorothy Sorg Vogt of Bradley House, Brattleboro, VT, died peacefully Saturday afternoon, October 9, 2021, at Brattleboro Memorial Hospital surrounded by family.

Mother, wife, teacher, friend - Winnie was passionate about civil rights, equal rights for women, literacy, children, and charitable works. She was big-hearted and generous beyond measure.
Winnie was born July 14, 1929, in East Orange, NJ, the daughter of Mildred (Hoops) and Harrison Theodore Sorg. She attended Kent Place School for Girls and Wellesley College where she majored in English and was Editor of the school newspaper.

In 1951, she married Roy S. Vogt in Summit, NJ, in her words "the beginning of an adventure, a partnership, a love affair that would last almost 48 years" until Roy's death in 1999.
The Vogts lived several years in Richmond, VA where Winnie taught 7th and 8th grade at St. Catherine's Episcopal School, before moving to Princeton, NJ in 1953. After raising two children, Winnie returned to teaching at Miss Fine's School. She continued teaching at Princeton Day School from 1966-1972, also serving one year administratively on the committee of four running the school pending the hiring of a headmaster.

In 1959, the Vogts purchased a cabin in the woods in Brookfield, VT where the family spent many happy summers. In 1972, the Vogts' love of Vermont brought them to Dummerston, VT. Winnie continued her teaching career at Bellows Falls, Middle School where she taught 7th and 8th grade Language Arts for nineteen years. In 1985 the school yearbook was dedicated to her. Winnie was active in the Windham Northeast Education Association and became President in 1979.
Winnie loved reading aloud and teaching from Huckleberry Finn, Johnny Tremain, and other books, and instilled this passion for reading in her students, many of whom she encouraged to higher education. It was not uncommon, years after Winnie finished her teaching career, for a former student to approach her on the street and thank her for her impact on their life.
Winnie's Christian faith was central to her life, and she and her husband were active members of a church in each community where they lived. She was a Deacon and Sunday School teacher for many years at the Dummerston Congregational Church, and also participated enthusiastically in the annual Dummerston Apple Pie Festival, the strawberry supper, and other church/community events.

In the late 1980s, Winnie was one of the founders of the nonprofit Windham County Reads, a Vermont literacy organization. For many years she worked tirelessly on the board, reading to children at "Books & Breakfast," and promoting the bookmobile. She was active in civic activities at the Dummerston Evening Star Grange and received their Community Service Award in 2004. Winnie volunteered at children's events at Nahlauka (Rudyard Kipling's Vermont home). She was a long- time board member at the Lydia Pratt Taft Library in West Dummerston. She was forever looking after the elderly, visiting the sick and bereaved, organizing receptions for funerals, providing meals and transportation to the seriously ill, and stuffing packages with books and nonperishable foodstuffs for the needy at home and abroad.

Winnie received a Senior Solutions Successful Aging Award in 2012, and was further honored by a VT House concurrent resolution.

Winnie loved to travel and memorable trips included a European tour after graduation from college, a trip to Greece with her daughter, a trip to England and Scotland with Roy, a Roman Etruscan dig in Italy with Earthwatch, travels with Roy to Nova Scotia and Cape Breton, a trip to Spain with a former Bellows Falls colleague, a trip to Costa Rica with her granddaughter, and travel to Turkey with Dummerston friends.

In 2015, Winnie chose to move from Dummerston to Bradley House in Brattleboro, "so I can walk to the library." She spent six happy years at Bradley House where she was grateful for the care and attention of the dedicated staff.

Gifts in Mrs. Vogt's memory may be made to Bradley House, 65 Harris Avenue, Brattleboro, VT 05301 and the Dummerston Congregational Church, 1535 Middle Road, Dummerston, VT 05346.
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