J.Henry Wilkinson's Family


    A bit of history...


              J. Henry Wilkinson inherited the land on which Wilkinson Gardens Elementary School stands from his maternal grandfather, J. Nelson.  J. Nelson was adopted by the Nelsons, the original owners of the land, after meeting them on the boat from Germany on which his family was emigrating in the mid 1800’s.  J. Nelson, originally J. Kratha, was from a poor family with many children.  When he met the Nelsons, a childless couple, they established a bond and offered to raise him.  His parents, the Krathas, agreed.  However, he kept in contact with his biological parents and family all his life, as did his children and grandchildren.  The cousins would visit between Georgia and New Jersey at least as late as the 1960’s.


              Henry Wilkinson had two children, Henry and Addie (called Dorothy). Henry became an attorney and a law professor; he had no children of his own.  Dorothy Wilkinson Albright became a teacher and opened the first kindergarten in her town of Thibodaux, Louisiana.  Dorothy and her husband, Gordon Albright, had two children, Dorothy Elizabeth Albright (McClure) and Larry Eugene Albright.  Dorothy, called “Dea,” taught Special Education for more than fifteen years and continues to work in schools after retirement.  Larry Albright has been a professor at several universities including St. Mary’s College in Maryland.  Of J. Henry Wilkinson’s six great-grandchildren, five are teachers.  As you can see, we believe that knowledge is the key to the future and education is a priceless gift to which every child is entitled.


    (Excerpt from Family Letter to WGE School on July 31,2015)