Collecting Delaware Books

Joanne Passmore

Joanne O. Passmore, age 77, passed away April 29, 2005. Born and raised on a Wisconsin dairy farm, she attended Blackburn College (IL) and the University of Wisconsin, graduating from the latter with a Bachelor of Science degree in agriculture and a master's degree in agricultural journalism. She came to the University of Delaware in 1950 as assistant editor in the Agricultural Extension Service. Through 4-H activities, she met Wills Passmore, with whom she owned and operated a dairy farm in southern New Castle County for 42 years. Joanne was very interested in Delaware agriculture — its past, present and most especially agriculture's future in our increasingly populated state.

She authored several books. Note that her name as author does not appear on the title page in the Grange books, but her authorship is acknowledged in the forward.

She permanently preserved for agriculture the farm where she lived. Her love of agriculture, preservation and history was particularly evident in her involvement with the Delaware Agricultural Museum in Dover, which she helped found. She was a director and volunteer there for many years, and served as president of its board. Active in agricultural and community organizations, Joanne became secretary of the National Grange in 1986, the first woman to hold that office since the organization was founded in 1867. She served on the boards of Wilmington Friends School and the Corbit-Calloway Library, various University of Delaware advisory committees, and as chair of the Governor's Council on Agriculture. She was frequently seen at Delaware book auctions as well.

Joanne is survived by her husband of 51 years, Wills Passmore.

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