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Alumnus treasures family memories on the Blinn-Brenham Campus

Raeke family’s history at Blinn dates back to 1906

Raeke family’s history at Blinn dates back to 1906

May 25, 2018

When William Raeke recently visited the Blinn College-Brenham Campus for a tour hosted by the Blinn College Alumni and Friends Association, he continued a family tradition dating back to 1906, when his great-uncle Henry Raeke served on the Blinn Board of Trustees.

William recently traveled to Brenham from Wichita Falls with his son, Rob, and brother, Howard. Rob journeyed from Little Rock, Ark., while Howard traveled from Henrietta, Texas. 

Henry Raeke was a member of the Blinn Board of Trustees that was instrumental in constructing the former Blinn College Main Building, now known as Old Main. 

“We have a long family history with Blinn and it was great to come back and visit after all these years,” William said. “We have previous relatives with their names on this campus, and this College means a lot to us.”

William and Howard’s mother, Julie Tolle, was a Blinn alumna in 1920-21 and was a member of the women’s basketball team. William later attended Blinn and was a member of the choir in 1947-48.
“It was rewarding to see that Blinn meant a lot to this family, and it was exciting to show them all the changes that have happened on campus and hear them comment on the progression,” said Kyle Merten, Director of Resource Development and Alumni Relations. “We like to create these experiences for our alumni or those who have a connection with the College, and hope that the generation of students that are coming through now will return years later like this family.”

The Raekes took photos and videos of Old Main, which features a plaque and cornerstone with Henry Raeke’s name on it, along with the other 1906 board members. 

“I have always heard about Blinn and its history, so this was an important trip for us,” said Rob, William’s son. “It really is neat to finally be here and see first-hand what this college meant to my family.”

Any alumni or friends of the College interested in a campus tour can contact Merten at 979-830-4495 or 

“We welcome all alumni and friends to Blinn, including community members who are interested in coming in and learning more about the campus and what we do here,” Merten said. 

The Alumni and Friends Association maintains contact with all former students and friends of the College, encourages support for and participate in the educational, cultural, athletic and social programs of the College, encourages personnel recruitment of students by members, assists the College in achieving planned goals and objectives and provides fellowship among former students and friends. To learn more about the Alumni and Friends Association, visit











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