"Cross word puzzles—and I’ll bet you’ve never had that one
before." That was the answer given by Mrs. Susie Kennedy Rhodes to a
"stock" question about hobbies in a talk this week.
The Shelbyville News
Saturday May 8, 1948
SUSIE KENNEDY RHODES
By Ave Lewis
Mrs. Rhodes subscribes to and buys all the cross word puzzle books she can
locate and never finds them tiresome or irritating. Maybe because she long ago
passed the stage of pencil chewing and mumbling over a four-letter word
"old Norse work" or something just as simple.
A teacher in Shelbyville schools for some years, Mrs. Rhodes estimates that
at some time or other she has taught about half the people she meets in a casual
walk downtown. And unexpectedly meeting a long-ago pupil and remembering him or
her and being remembered is a high point in any day for her. She likes school
teaching and she likes people.
She was born in the same block where her present home now is located—at 141
West Hendricks street. Her early life was uneventful she says and she attended
the school which was on the site of the present Major school. "It was the
only one in town," Mrs. Rhodes says, "and it just was called ‘the
school’." After graduating from the local high school she taught at the
old Moberly school east of Shelbyville before enrolling at the State Normal at
Terre haute. Coming back home she taught for three years and it was during this
time that she met her future husband, John W. Rhodes, whose death
occurred in January, 1943. Their romance started during a Shelby county fair.
Seems she and a group of friends were making the rounds of the ground when she
heard a mutual friend say "Spruce up John, I want you to meet Miss
That was the first of many fairs the couple attended together.
addition to being a teacher Mr. Rhodes always was interested in horse racing and
for many years drove on the local track. But Mrs. Rhodes’ enthusiasm for his
driving never was too great. She merely went because he liked for her to be
there. They were members of the Wi-Hub Circle for many years and Mrs. Rhodes has
served as president of the organization.
She also is a member of Mary Mott Green chapter of the D.A.R. and Mrs.
Roscoe O’Byrne, the present president-general of the National D.A.R. is
her second cousin.
Following their marriage on August 26, 1893, both Mr. and Mrs. Rhodes taught
at various schools and resided for a while in Morristown where their only son,
William, was born. This was followed with several years’ residence in
Greensburg and they returned to Shelbyville when the son was ready for high
school. "His is the career you should be writing," Mrs. Rhodes says.
Bill was an Annapolis graduate and now is Captain William Rhodes, U.S.
Navy, stationed at Norfolk, Virginia. He and his wife have a son, William
Kennedy Rhodes, Jr. who soon will be Annapolis material and he naturally is
the proverbial "apple" of his grandmother’s eye.
Mrs. Rhodes retired from the teaching profession during the Christmas season
of 1942. But she still keeps her finger in the business by acting as
"reader" for the boys and girls on West Hendricks street. That is, she
aids them with memory work and various other school problems. And along with her
cross word puzzles she maintains her home, teaches a Sunday school class at her
home church, the First Presbyterian, and frequently is called upon to give book
reviews, readings or stories at the social gatherings she attends.
And she probably could be highly entertaining in almost any local group
should she start recalling classroom antics of the people present.
Contributed by Barb Huff