Born in Lake Berrien, Michigan in 1899, George Dewey Arend was the son of George and Athalia Arend. And Miriam was born in 1900 to Ota D. Avery and Lulah Avery in Three Rivers Michigan. They would meet during their time at Western Michigan University, which at the time it was known as Western State Normal School. In September of 1922 George and Miriam would marry and relocate permanently to Kalamazoo. Four years later, on June 11, 1925 Miriam would give birth to their one and only son, Dean Arend. The small family would live at 726 North Dartmouth Street, Kalamazoo, Michigan, 49007. George Arend would hold a number of jobs over the course of his life, from working with the Dock Foundry Company out of Three Rivers, Michigan to the Kalamazoo Loose Leaf Binder Company as a factory manager and served as a public accountant during the 1940's he became interested in small business companies. Miriam was a life time member of the Garden Club Council, which was an extension of the Ladies Libraries Association. Both George and Miriam where active members of the community. Aside from her work with the Garden Club, she was also a member of the First Presbyterian Church. George also took part in community organizations; he was a member of the Kalamazoo male Chorus as well as the Free Masons.
Their son Dean, before becoming a professor, would serve in World War Two, taking part in the Pacific theater and participating in the battles on and for the Philippines. As we see throughout the collection that in the years after the war he would spend time traveling across America as well as spending a great amount of time on Beaver Island in Lake Michigan.
The couple would celebrate their 50th Wedding Anniversary, commonly known as the Golden Wedding Anniversary in 1972. But in 1976, after a brief struggle with illness, George Arend passed away Friday afternoon December 3, 1976 at Borgess Hospital, Kalamazoo. He was 77. Miriam would live on for another 19 years but on February 24, 1995 at 95 years old, Miriam Arend passed away.