Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Rhodes 40th Class Reunion!

For those of us that graduated from James Ford Rhodes High School in 1978, please join us for our 40th Reunion. It's scheduled for Saturday, September 8, 2018. It will be held at Forest City Shuffleboard at 4506 Lorain Avenue, Cleveland, 44102.

For more information, email Sue Barto at: jfr1978@yahoo.com

Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

A couple of favorite winter shots of Memphis School. My good friend and former classmate, Karl Tescar, found this neat one of our old school after a snowfall. The Christmas concert photo below in our old auditorium was sent to us by classmate, Nancy Windhorst Moeller a few years back.  Wishing all of you a very Merry Christmas and a safe, healthy and Happy New Year! 

P.S. I think the previous contest was way too hard! We'll come up with a new one in the new year as we had no guesses. Also, we have some Memphis demolition bricks that we can include as prizes.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017


Ladies and gentlemen....Here's our first and second contests. This is for the students that went to Memphis during the 50-60s. I will also have contests coming up that will be for students that attended during the 70s then one more contest for students from the 80s. 
Scroll down to the bottom picture for contest #2. Enter either contest 1 or 2, not both.

Contest #1....Name each of the six teachers in the photos below. These are the photos that Gloria (Gorczyca) Downey was nice enough to submit. If you know the names, please email them to me at: zarykfamily@twc.com
In order to give everyone a chance to see this, we will give everyone until October 15th to respond. Once I get everyone's email with the correct names, I will place your names in a bowl and my wife will pick out two winners.
Tell us the names from L to R for photo #1
Tell us the names from L to R for photo #2
Each of the two winners can pick any two of these fine artifacts from our school. I also have a pencil sharpener not pictured that will also be available. I found the flashlight in the custodians office and it still works! That's another YOYO, a box of super old Sucrets, old pop bottle, some old clay that's still semi-pliable, old chalk and a can of silver decorative spray.

Contest #2.....Interestingly, 4 out of the 7 products pictured above were made in Cleveland. Tell me which of the 4 were made in Cleveland and you will win a prize. Contest rules same as above, Oct 15th deadline but only one name with the correct answer will be pulled for this one. Good Luck!

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Memphis School Items

I have two full boxes of small mementos from our old school. Need to start thinning these artifacts out. I will be posting what I have and if anything sings to you, email me at zarykfamily@twc.com
This old gal was apparently left behind from one of our travelling puppet shows. I found her under the stage in the auditorium. I suspect the puppeteers couldn't use her since some of the strings were detached, so they stowed her away and forgot about her. I didn't realize they used real hair on the older marionettes! Click on any image to enlarge.
If this is someone's YO-YO that was taken away from them by one of our great teachers...I would be happy to return it to you at no charge! By doing quick research, it appears to be from the early 70s.
I'll have more to post. Also, the 'Name-the-teacher" contest is coming soon, thanks to our good friend and fellow classmate, Gloria (Gorczyca) Downey and her recent submission of some great pictures of teachers from the early 60s.

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Gloria (Gorczyca) Downey's Story and Photos

Here's the wonderful story and pictures from Gloria (Gorczyca) Downey that I lost during the recent email changeover I went through. Thankfully, Gloria was able to resend her story and the great photos she took during her last visit at our school in 94. Also, we have some more photos that Gloria shared of some of her teachers back in the 50s that we will use for a 'name-the-teacher' contest. I will be posting them soon! The winner will win a souvenir.... an old pencil sharpener from one of our old classrooms (similar to the pencil sharpener in photo #5 below). 

Here's Gloria's story and great photos....Remember to click on any image to enlarge!

Hi Greg,

My family moved from Cleveland in 1961 to California. I went to Mark Twain through the 4th grade and then on to Memphis and that's where all my memories are. I found Bruce Stoessner's article on the internet a few years ago and have messaged him a few times on Facebook. It turns out that he lived just 4 houses away from mine. He moved there shortly before we left, he was younger so I don't remember him but he actually remembered my brother and I remembered his older sister.

Looked up Memphis School again last night and found your blog. My sister and I went on a road trip in 1994 and had just minutes to spend in Cleveland and had to drive past Mark Twain and Memphis School. It just so happen that school just let out days earlier and the were a few cars parked so we went inside. The people there said that the future of Memphis was undecided and things were being packed up. We asked if we could walk around and take a souvenir, they said sure. I took a metal fallout shelter sign and some flash cards. Now, of course, I wish I had filled the car with stuff. I took a few photos (attached) below. Also there is a picture of Mrs. Wurch's autograph from my old autograph book. I always thought that I wish I could do something with my name like that.

I graduated in 1959
Thanks for sharing your memories of Memphis,
Gloria ( GORCZYCA) Downey



Love the look of fountain pen ink which was commonly used back then. You can tell Mrs. Wurch was really creative! Click on this image to enlarge.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

New Email Address!

Hello Fellow Memphians! I have a new email address it's:


The above pic is our old elementary school back when it had only two floors, not three like we all remember. This is a super rare image taken sometime before 1919, which is the year the third floor was added. Does anyone remember how cool our school looked at night when all of the classrooms were lit up? I remember going to an open house at night and walking there with my mother from W. 42nd Street. The school looked magnificent!

Please send your memories to me...long or short and some pics. Remember to hit the older posts button at the bottom of each page to see other stories and pics.

Thank you!


Saturday, October 8, 2016

Hilda Brucker - Memphis Class of 1972

Fellow Memphis classmate and freelance writer, Hilda Brucker.

Recently, I received an email from a cherished classmate of ours, Hilda Brucker.

Hilda is now an accomplished freelance writer living in the Atlanta area. She has authored two books and written for many publications including; Audubon, Better Homes and Gardens and The Old Farmers Almanac, to name only a few.

It was wonderful reminiscing with Hilda and I thoroughly enjoyed her incredibly sharp memory. In fact, she reminded me of the pet department in the old Woolworths store on Fulton Parkway, a place where a few of my pets came from. A memory I had long forgotten. Thank you, Hilda, for stopping by and reminiscing with us!

Hi Greg,

I'm quite sure you won't remember me, but I discovered your Memphis blog a little over a year ago. I was actually a second-grade classmate of yours in Miss Shirley Roach's class. I was on the zoo field trip with you, the one you blogged about, and my mom was actually a chaperone on that trip. My family lived at 4607 Memphis Ave back then -- just one block over from the school, with one little side street to cross as I walked to school. (I believe it was W 45th St). There was always a sixth-grader with a yellow safety flag guarding that intersection and helping the little kids cross. 

Were we also in the same first grade class? I had a teacher named Miss Yachyshyn. (Pronounced like YAHK-uh-shun). It's amazing that I can remember how to spell that, but I guess that's why I became a writer. 

After 2nd grade I was diverted into the Enrichment Program, so I wasn't in your classes any more. I had Mrs. Betty Kramarz for 3rd and 4th grade (room 206); Mrs. Schneid for 5th grade (room 208, but I don't remember her first name); and Mrs. Kathleen Hansen for 6th grade (room 308). 

Did you go to Mooney Jr High? I don't remember you there at all. 

In the summer of 1972, after you and I "graduated" from Memphis, my family moved into my grandma's house, where my mom had grown up. That house was also in Old Brooklyn, at 2401 Tampa Ave, which ran between Broadview Rd and State Rd. My little sister then attended 5th and 6th grade at Benjamin Franklin Elementary School.  I sold that house in 2002, when my dad died, and it made me very sad to do so. 

So this is how I found your blog:
In June of 2015 (last summer) I was on a walk in my neighborhood (I live in Atlanta now) when I ran into a man who always waves to me when I pass his yard. I ran into him walking his dog, and it turned out the dog's name was "Memphis." So I laughed and told him I grew up on Memphis Ave and attended Memphis Elementary School and he got a funny look on his face while he was processing that info and finally he said, "You're from Cleveland?" As you can guess, he was too -- small world story. (Looking back, I should have known he was a midwesterner and not a southerner, because he always waved.) So I went home that night and was thinking about Memphis School and googled to find out what had become of it, and that's how I found your blog. I wanted to write you then, but I was getting ready for a trip to Novia Scotia... and besides, writers are famous procrastinators. So I'm finally getting around to being in touch. 

It would be fun to hear back from you. I'm betting you don't remember me, but your name resonated with me right away and I when I read the post about the zoo trip, your face popped right into my head. I remember you always had fascinatingly good hair. 

-Hilda Brucker

Hilda's 2nd, 3rd and 5th grade class pictures. Click on any image to enlarge!
Hilda along with her brother and sister in their Easter outfits outside their home on Memphis Avenue.
Hilda (center) along with her siblings photographed on Memphis Avenue.

A great portrait of Hilda and her sister, taken at Kruse Studios, our former neighborhood photography studio on Memphis Avenue.