Arnold “Pepper” Jackson

Arnold “Pepper” Jackson

Madison- Arnold “Pepper” Jackson, Jr., age 93, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, April 19, 2017, at Coventry Village Memory Care in Madison with his daughter, Leslie, at his side.

He was born November 23, 1923 to the late Dr. Arnold S. and Lora C. (Ziesel) Jackson.

Pepper was a graduate of Madison West High School and the University of Wisconsin, where he was a proud student of the late Professor Aldo Leopold. From an early age, Pepper had a passionate desire for the natural world, and spent much time studying ornithology and helping Professor Leopold establish native flora in the Arboretum in Madison. Later in life, you would find him at the Madison Audubon Goose Pond Sanctuary, or at another Wisconsin prairie project, helping harvest seeds, or planting native prairie plants, or guiding a controlled-burn effort.

At the start of World War II, Pepper was selected and trained with the 10th Mountain Division at Camp Hale. This elite army team perfected ski defense maneuvers in the rugged Colorado Rockies. A love for science also directed Pepper’s early career, becoming a science teacher and later principal at Todd Seminary for Boys in Woodstock, Illinois. Besides teaching, he was given the opportunity to take the boys sailing off the Florida coast and hiking in the Canadian Rockies.

Always an adventurer, he met the late Kathryn Ogden Brumm, who in many ways equaled his passion for the great outdoors. They were married on December 17, 1949 at Grace Episcopal Church in Madison, Wisconsin. Together they would canoe to Hudson Bay in northern Canada, sail the North Channel of Lake Huron, ski in the Rockies and Alps, and explore the wilderness of Mexico. Soon they would have four children in tow, who would also learn the spirit of adventure.

Pepper and Kathryn spent a significant part of their life establishing a family farm just outside Dane, Wisconsin, where Pepper applied many lessons of ecology, especially the early development of minimal-tillage farming practices in the late 1950’s. On the farm, there were also hogs to be raised, and acres of strawberries and asparagus to be cultivated. Providing sanctuary for birds and other wildlife, the farm was a living laboratory for the Jackson kids to learn important lessons of hard work and the wonder of natural sciences. On May 10, 2003, the family farm was preserved for the greater good as the Jackson Waterfowl Production Area was dedicated by the Madison Audubon Society and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Pepper is survived by his children, Arnold “Steve” (Lori) Jackson III, Andrew (Barbie) Jackson, Leslie (Mike) Martin and Alfred (Susan) Jackson, and 8 grandchildren, Patrick, Noah, Leif, Brian, Karli, Emily, Dusty and Sarah, and 3 great grandchildren, Declynn, Bella and Aurora. In addition to his parents and wife, he was preceded in death by 4 sisters, Virginia, Joanne, Eleanor and Marjorie.

A memorial service will be held at 1:00pm on Tuesday, April 25, 2017, at Cress Funeral Home, 3610 Speedway Road, Madison, Wisconsin. A visitation will be held from 12:00pm to the time of the service.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials be directed to the Madison Audubon Society.

The family would like to thank the wonderful caregivers of Sebring, and the staff of Agrace, for their loving care of Pepper.