Frank and Carmen Nadolney are celebrating the 80th anniversary of the founding of Cloverleaf this year.
This subdivision community with over 3800 homes, is the result of the vision of Frank’s father and mother, Romanus F. and Frances Nadolney.
The Nadolneys arrived in the North Shore of Houston in 1935. Originally R. F. was from Michigan, and Frances was raised in Sweetwater, Texas. They had met at her employer’s, Western Union, and married in 1929. After an illustrious but short career with the Notre Dame football team, and the Green Bay Packers, R. F. had gone to California, New Mexico and elsewhere to develop housing subdivisions.
As a football player, R. F. was known as “Peaches” by his teammates, which included playing for the famous Knute Rockne at Notre Dame, and Green Bay in 1922, and four seasons with the Milwaukee Badgers of the early NFL. His football teammates included George Gipp, and Curly Lambeau. As a result, Nadolney was later enshrined in the U. P. College Football Hall of Fame.
Nadolney started Cloverleaf Farms by buying about 1000 acres from the Hornberger interests. As time passed, Nadolney sold lots in the subdivision from Manor Street on the east, working westward until they finally built out Freeport Street and Evanston Street, and lots were built out with modest homes for the workers in the shipyards, refineries and defense industries near the port, it became necessary for the school district to build a school for all the new children. So in 1942 the Nadolneys donated 6.5 acres of land to the Galena Park school district, for a new elementary school named Cloverleaf Elementary. It opened with 256 children, and now has almost 1000 with successive additions.
Although R. F. or Romanus Frank “Peaches” Nadolney died in 1963, his wife Frances continued their benevolence after his death, and in 1975 donated the land on which the North Shore Little League built their playing field. It is named R. F. Nadolney Field. Today their son Frank continues this generosity to the community they founded, by supporting the North Shore Little League for the last 52 years, and the North Shore Rotary Club and their youth projects.
Galena Park ISD received a federal grant of $50,000, announced by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, from the defense public works fund for construction of the school. The the district under the direction of superintendent Dr. Walter Hinds voted to issue $15,000 in matching bonds for the school construction. The school was built with six classrooms, on Goose Creek Road at Clover Leaf Farms, according to old newspaper clippings.
In December 2003 the Galena Park school district named a library Frances I. Nadolney Library in her honor. Present at the dedication ceremony were superintendent Dr. Shirley Neeley, and the school board headed by Jeff Miller, and the principal of the Cloverleaf Elementary Ofelia Garza. Mrs. Nadolney had died in 2002, at the age of 96. R. F. Nadolney died in 1963.