In Memoriam: Norma Greer Ogden, Old Corner House Founder

 Norma Greer Ogden, founder of The Old Corner House, celebrates at Norman Rockwell Museum's 40th anniversary celebration, June 9, 2009. Photo by Sarah Edwards. ©Norman Rockwell Museum. All rights reserved.

Norma Greer Ogden, founder of The Old Corner House, celebrates at Norman Rockwell Museum’s 40th anniversary celebration, June 9, 2009. Photo ©Norman Rockwell Museum.

Norman Rockwell Museum is saddened to learn about the passing of one of its founding mothers, Norma Greer Ogden, who died January 9, 2013, at the age of 92.

In 1967, a historic home on Main Street in Stockbridge was threatened with demolition. Ms. Ogden was one of several concerned citizens, including Norman and Molly Rockwell and Patricia Johnson Deely, who joined forces to save the classic white clapboard building. In the 40th anniversary of the Museum’s Portfolio magazine, former Museum board member Michelle Gillett wrote that “Norma saw the potential in the historic building and worked to turn it into a home for the Stockbridge Historical Society. Norma remembers sitting in front of the house with Molly Rockwell and Pat Deely trying to decide what to name it. Molly recalled that when Mrs. Dwight lived there, the building was called the Old Corner House, and “that’s how it all began.”’

“Norma was a persistent and consistent champion of the idea of displaying her friend Norman’s art work to the public,” notes Norman Rockwell Museum Trustee Emerita Lila Berle. “She never was deterred by obstacles or naysayers and was very present at meetings and gatherings from day one at the Old Corner House until we marched up the road to the Museum’s current location 20 years ago.”

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick presents Norman Rockwell Museum Trustee Emerita Norma Greer Ogden with an honorary certificate during the Museum's 40th anniversary celebration, June 9, 2009. Photo by Sarah Edwards. ©Norman Rockwell Museum. All rights reserved

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick presents Norman Rockwell Museum Trustee Emerita Norma Greer Ogden with an honorary certificate during the Museum’s 40th anniversary celebration. Photo ©Norman Rockwell Museum. All rights reserved

Ogden served on the Board of Trustees for the Old Corner House from 1966 to 1982, and served as its President from 1967 to 1970 and was Trustee Emerita at the time of her death. Her commitment to the community had a lasting impact, and her dedication and gift for relationships built the foundation of Norman Rockwell Museum as it exists today. Ms. Ogden, who recently resided in Athens, GA., was honored by the Museum on the evening of June 9, 2009, in appreciation for her years of service, during a special ceremony to celebrate the Museum’s 40th anniversary.

On learning about Ogden’s recent passing, Norman Rockwell Museum Director/CEO Laurie Norton Moffatt reflects that “Norma’s vision, love of Stockbridge, dedication to historic preservation and personal brand of grass roots civic activism inspired so many of us to believe that working together we could create positive change. She joins a long lineage of strong, civic-minded women in Stockbridge who have made the community and world a better place. She always marveled at the museum that The Old Corner House grew to be. We shall miss her greatly and must carry on her civic leadership.”

Norman Rockwell Museum sends our thoughts and prayers to Ms. Ogden’s family and many friends.

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Above: video clip of Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick honoring Norma Ogden, Jane Fitzpatrick, and Lila Berle; three of Norman Rockwell Museum’s guiding lights; during the Museum’s 40th anniversary celebration on June 9, 2009.
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