Jeanette R. Rosenbusch

Honored by:Ricardo F. Rosenbusch
Brick location:E:9  map

Jeanette Richardson Rosenbusch was an avid student of the political world in which she lived. During her lifetime she had the opportunity to observe and experience the political firestorms of a far-away land. Her son, Ricardo, wishes to honor her for her courage in leaving home and family and immersing herself in another language and culture.

Jeanette Richardson was born in New Brunswick, New Jersey, on the 23rd of May of 1915. She was the oldest of three children. At the time she was born, her father was working for the New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station. In 1928, when Jeanette was thirteen years old, her mother died of appendicitis. Seeking a safe and comfortable community in which to raise his three children alone, Dr. Charles Howard Richardson accepted the position of Associate Professor of Entomology at Iowa State University and moved his family to Ames. During her high school years, Jeanette assumed the responsibility of helping to care for her sister Adelaide (8 years old at her mother's death), and her brother Howard (2 years old).

After graduating from Ames High School, Jeanette attended the University of Wisconsin at Madison, where she obtained a BA in Letters and Sciences with a major in history. She graduated in 1936 with honors in general scholarship. She studied during the 1936-37 year at ISU as a graduate student in American history.

Jeanette’s father loved nature and taught his children to enjoy it in many outings with the family. One year, when Jeanette joined her family for a climb on Pike's Peak in Colorado, she met her future husband, Carlos Rosenbusch, who also loved the mountains and nature. Carlos, who was from Buenos Aires, Argentina, was then a student at the ISU College of Veterinary Medicine.

Jeanette and Carlos were engaged in 1939 and celebrated the occasion with a party held at the ISU Memorial Union that their family and friends fondly remembered years later. Shortly afterwards, they left for Buenos Aires, Argentina where they were married on the 17th of August of 1939. Jeanette lived in Argentina until her death in October of 1978.

In Buenos Aires, Jeanette integrated into Argentine society, learning to speak Spanish and accustoming herself to the new culture. Her first child, Dora, was born in 1941, followed by Ricardo in 1942, Francisco in 1944, and Enrique in 1946. Her youngest son died at the age of 20.

When her children were just entering their school-age years, Jeanette taught American History at the American Grammar and High School in Buenos Aires for three years. She was a member of the University Women's Club for many years, and of the Central Methodist Church of Buenos Aires, which she attended regularly with her family.

During World War II, Argentina slipped from democracy to military regimes, followed by the populist dictatorship of Peron. The Peronist period was lived by many in fear of disappearances and informants, who could be the domestic employees or even the children's schoolteachers. Yet out of these years came women's suffrage and integration of the rural poor into the national economy. As a historian, Jeanette was fascinated by the unfolding events and encouraged her students and children to make a critical analysis of these political events. Jeanette is remembered by them for her insistence on a broad base of facts on which to develop a historical context, and for her interest in politics as a mold for social changes.

Jeanette is survived by her husband, three of her children, her four grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren. Her son Ricardo and his wife, Marcia, reside in Ames with two of her grandchildren Karina and Adrian.

Submitted on 6/30/95