Jenny Phillips was born and raised in Kitchener, Ontario. She is a direct descendent of Samuel Bricker, one of three pioneer Mennonite men who bought the Beasley Tract for the German Company from Lancaster Pennsylvania. All her immediate relatives were Mennonite farmers. Jenny attended Shepherd Public School and later Eastwood and Kitchener Collegiates. December 23, 1963 during a blizzard the family of nine moved to London, Ontario. Jenny’s father’s new job was to begin January, 1964. When he went to the office there was a Sherriff’s notice on the door. The firm was out of business. When the school year was complete the family moved to St. Thomas. Jenny dropped out of school and worked as a waitress and as a factory worker. While working at Paul’s Food Bar, Jenny learned about Alma College’s bursary program. She applied and in August of 1965 she enrolled in Alma’s grade twelve class and paid for her room, board, tuition and books working as Head Girl in the Barbara Heck Dining Hall. Jenny graduated Class of ’66.
Bell Telephone offered Jenny a position as a long distance operator. The shifts varied day by day and week by week. After an illness, Jenny accepted work with regular hours as hostess in the Executive Dining Room of Ford Motor, Talbotville. Jenny married Dave Phillips in 1968 in the Alma College Chapel. They have four children and 9 grandkids. The family lived in Dutton. In 1990, Jenny & Dave realized their dream. They opened Village Crier Gallery. Jenny has always doodled but never had much spare time to indulge in the arts. David encouraged and supported her dreams.
They now live in an apartment above the gallery, a studio was added upstairs. David was appointed as Town Crier for the Municipality of Dutton Dunwich (1990) as well as the County of Elgin (2006).
Scope and Content
Collection consists of research files, photographs, and other local history material created, collected and/or maintained by Jenny Phillips. It is comprised of the following series:
-Photographs series, ca. 1900- 2003.
-Publications series, 1928-1930.
-Newspapers series, July 4, 2004- November 14, 2007.