Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Another book purchased at one of the book fairs at Memphis. Please consider sending in your Memphis School photos and story. I would also like to take this time to wish all of my fellow Memphis School alums a very Merry Christmas and a healthy and Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Movie Theaters around Old Brooklyn

Does anyone remember the movie houses in our neighborhood? We once had a field trip from Memphis School 3rd grade to see a matinee movie at the old Lyceum Theater on Fulton Road. I can't remember the film we saw, but I do remember going back to the Lyceum to see a Vincent Price movie called the Wax Museum. Here's an image of the old Lyceum. As most of you know, there is a library there now. Click on any image to enlarge.
That's me in the projection booth of the old Broadview Theater on Pearl Road. It was taken just before it was torn down in the late 80's. I was able to purchase the 3-movie projectors from the old Broadview. I'm checking with the Old Brooklyn Development Corporation to see if they have any images of the Broadview. I can't seem to find any on the web. If you have any images of our old school or our neighborhood, please send them in.

Monday, December 14, 2015

A fun story from Memphis Alum, Ron Szudy

Dear Greg:
This morning I found your blog dedicated to Memphis School. HOW GREAT!  

I graduated (from Memphis to Harper) in January of 1961. That makes me a classmate of Jim Ledyard. What great memories were evoked when I went through your posts. Jim Ledyard had schoolyard marbles perfectly described. Jim do you remember each spring the Duncan yo-yo sales guy would set up across the street from the school and we'd all watch his tricks in amazement? During the winters of 1959 and 1960, we played a great (and rough) game of tackle tag on the snow-covered basketball court. I probably still have some scrapes from that! 

The basement classroom, boiler room and gym also brought back lots of memories. I remember our teachers as very strict but what a great educational foundation they gave us all for later years. We were very lucky to have those teachers in that era. Lots of friends' faces come to mind. Mike Gillotti, Bill Tash etc. Does anyone remember them?  Each fall I still remember the school bazaars. Games, trinkets, good food and lots of fun! Best wishes and God's blessings to all who read this and share some of these memories of a great school that shaped our lives.
                                                                                                Ron Szudy

Monday, November 2, 2015

Do you have a story?

It's been awhile since we received any stories. Please consider sending your story about your time at Memphis School. Email them to me at gregoryz@centurylink.net

It could be as long or short as you wish. Send some pictures too!

I found the solid-brass lock pictured above in the custodians office at Memphis. It was hanging on a nail with the key sticking out. It is surprisingly heavy for a padlock. Has anyone ever been in the basement of our old school? There was also another sub-basement that was another 4 or 5 steps deeper. However, that area was too creepy for even me to walk through. Actually, I would've explored the sub-basement, but at the time there was a foot of water down there. The huge boilers were located in this room.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Rare Photograph of Memphis School before the Third-Floor Addition!

A SUPER rare image of our old school in it's original build with only TWO floors, not three-floors like we all remember. This image was taken sometime before 1919, which is the year the third floor was added.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Favorite Books from Memphis School Days

As you know, I have a selection of old text books from Memphis School, some of which were from my own classes. I also have a few non-text books that I still have including these two seasonal ones. Recently, I even found a handful of the old Scholastic paperback books that I ordered while at Memphis.  
Does anyone remember the Scholastic book fairs that were always held in the first floor corridor?

Sunday, August 23, 2015

The Ghost of Memphis School?

Do you see it?

I know we're still a couple months out from Halloween, but take a closer look at one of the images that Russ Kawentel recently shared with us. Look at the center basement window in the lower left side. There seems to be some type of apparition in the school gym.

During the time I was posting the images below regarding the demolition, I couldn't help but to notice what appears to be a face looking back at Russ during the time he snapped this picture.

Do you remember the eerie experience I had when I visited the school back in October of 2006, eight months before it was torn down? I posted the story back on October 1, 2011. To summarize the event, I entered the school one evening, and during the time I was walking up the stairwell to the third floor, I heard a loud banging noise that sounded like it came from the school gym. Halfway up the stairs, the banging stopped. When I got to the third floor, I saw a silhouette of what looked like someone holding their hands up over their head. I couldn't tell if they were looking at me or out the opposite stairwell windows. Freaked out, I ran down the stairs two and three steps at a time!

Could the above apparition be related to what I saw that one October evening? And you guys thought I was crazy! :o}

Now you really know we need your stories! Please send them in!!

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Demolition of Memphis School

It was back in June, 2007 that our old school came tumbling down. Fellow Memphis Alum, Russ Kawentel, captured the last days of Memphis School. Click on any image to enlarge.

After studying Russ' pictures, they reminded me that there was a huge tunnel like area on top of the third floor. During the time I was hired to photograph the school years before it was demolished, I remember going into a huge area that covered the entire footprint of the school. However, it was a cat-walk, you couldn't stand up and basically had to stoop your way around. It was above the third floor. You can see it in the above image and the next two images.

I actually planned to explore the cat-walks, but chickened out at the last minute. This was when I brought a huge, high candle-powered flashlight with me, but as soon as I got up there, the flashlight I brought turned on, but strangely, didn't light anything up!

I'm pretty sure this is looking into the auditorium.

Please find the time to write your memories down and send them to me at: gregoryz@centurylink.net

We'll post your Memphis School story and it will help offset the sad images above of a great school that was ours, but for a flicker of time.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Russ Kawentel - Class of 1967

Recently, I received some great pictures and great memories of Memphis School from a former neighbor of mine, Russ Kawentel. It was nice reading Russ' reflections. I too, hold the bazaars that Russ mentions below as dear memories. I'm happy Russ reminded me of these special times. Let's now read Russ' recollections of our old school. I will also post more of his Memphis School photo-collection soon. Click on the above image or any images to enlarge.

Thank you, Russ!

I have some great memories of Memphis School as well. I started Kindergarten there in September 1961 (with Miss Eileen Goodnight, of course) and graduated in 1967. I too was in the safety patrol. I manned the Memphis Ave crossing along with Bertha Dudley, the school crossing guard. I also remember the “red-haired librarian” (though I recall it being bright orange). Her name was Mrs. Marquardt.  The photos of the swings brought back memories of the steel sliding board (burning hot in the summer) and the monkey bars (no padding underneath).  

I have attached a photo of my graduating class of 1967. I am in the back row, 2nd from right (click on image to enlarge).  You can see how large the class is.  Because they did away with the A and B classes in 1967, my B class was jumped forward half a year for June graduation. So this photo represents a combination of both the A and B classes.  

I never had Miss Baker, but my older brother and sister have vivid memories of her. She was in charge of the school safety patrol when my brother was a guard, and she demanded army discipline. All the boys in the patrol would keep a sharp lookout for her Checker car coming out of the parking lot, and would snap to attention as she drove by. And she would stand at the top of the staircase at the end of the day, watching as the students marched single file down the stairs and out the door for home. No running, no talking, eyes straight ahead, or else. When my sister's boot came off her foot on the stairs, she was so scared she just kept on going. She said she never breathed easy until she was across the street. 

If you remember Miss Dorn (my 1st grade teacher), she died just a few years ago. Her obituary (with photo) is at http://kdoc.us/in-memory-norma-dorn-lathrop/.

My favorite teacher was Miss Krzepina in 5th grade. Years later, my sister, also an elementary school teacher, spoke with her when she was head of the Cleveland Public School's Math Department. She still remembered me. I hope for the right reasons.

My favorite school memory is of the bazaars they held in the basement gym. Games, contests, and cotton candy. Better than a church fair. I believe they were held as fund raisers for the PTA.

Anyway, great work on the web page. 
Keep it up, Russell Kawentel