Saturday, September 8, 2012

Memphis Memories from 1948 by Nancy Windhorst Moeller

Students from the Class of 1948. Click on any image to enlarge.
I happened upon your blog by chance and have spent the most delightful hour revisiting Memphis School, which I attended through 1948.

The comments were all so interesting; my homeroom was Room 303, initially with Miss Ruth Ross. I dragged out my old class pictures, including a few pictures of the chorus, "orchestra", and the lead actors of the Christmas program.  I later went to Wm. Rainey Harper Jr. High, then James Fort Rhodes High School for two years before transferring to Parma High School.  I was in the first graduating class from Parma High School.
Classmates and teacher autographs found on the back of the above photo.

One thread was so interesting to read as it captured so much of the personal lives of some of the teachers I remembered, but hadn't thought of in years.  The writer remembered Mrs. Weist, and Rev. and Mrs. Weist's daughter Carol was in one of my classes.  I remember Mrs. Stillman's distinctive slanted writing.

I remember my first kindergarten teacher's name was Mrs. Wilson, I remember playing school on the first day of vacation with the school books that I was given for helping in the teacher's lounge, and wanting to be a teacher until the first time a boy threw-up in class. . . all these memories are coming fast and furious and I'm sure I'll be awake most of the night remembering more.
The Kindergarten class in Room 101. The writer of this wonderful story, Nancy Windhorst, is standing center, top row, fifth one from the left.
I lived on Brookside Drive, between Ridge Road and West 63rd until my family moved to Parma in 1952.  After my marriage in 1962 we moved to Ann Arbor, Michigan and lived there until 1972 when we moved to Tuscaloosa, Alabama, where I now reside.

Interestingly, and I'll make an involved story short, the mother of a chiropractor who was standing in for mine, told me he thought his mother had gone to Memphis School.  Later in the day I brought back my pictures to see if he could pick her out.  He couldn't, and so he called her (in Mobile, Alabama) and we talked for quite a while.  I found that she was a year ahead of me and had many memories of the same teachers.  I did have her name, but can't remember it now, but I will try to track her down and tell her of the wonderful work you're doing for all us old Memphisites.  

It was so interesting to read other's memories of school.  I'm awed by the information on the teachers that Gilbert Newlands posted.  To know their marital status, what kinds of cars they drove?  I guess I thought the teachers must live there as I never remember seeing them drive any kind of car and just never imagined that a teacher had a family!

As I suspected, since I wrote this I have remembered so many more things from my days at Memphis:

Room 104
When I was at Memphis we did not eat lunch there, but had to walk home or take the bus.  Unfortunately I lived at the end of the line, on Brookside Drive, so I was the last to get home and had to be the first back on the bus.  Made for a rather short lunchtime.  At times when there were more kids taking the bus than usual a 'trailer', sort of an abbreviated camper-looking thing would be attached to the bus and everyone wanted to ride in that. 

Room 201
There was a small store across from the school, where the bus stop was.  I could not tell you to this day what the store sold EXCEPT for the display case in the very front that held all the penny candy.  Frequently it was a race to make your purchases before the bus left. 

Room 203
I had said earlier that my homeroom teacher in room 303 was Miss Ross. She used to wear the loveliest plaid suit. I believe that she must have married her service-man beau and moved, and then was replaced by Miss Covell, as I remember her also.  I loved music and still think of my favorite song we would sing, "My Green Cathedral", every time I drive through a street near to my house that has a lovely canopy of branches over the street.

Room 303

My prized possessions are the six class pictures that I have from Memphis School, including one with 28 signatures on it. Thanks again for this site and all the great memories!