One sock up and sensible shoes

Aug 29, 2021 | 0 comments

First Grade, Versailles School, Alameda, CA – May 1942
Sydney – First Row, second from left

Versailles School — First Grade — Alameda Calif — May 1942  it says in Dad’s handwriting on the back.  My first school picture, or at least the first one I remember.  It turned up in an unmarked box with forty years’ worth of disparate images.  I’m eager to sit down and take a look, but for now this one and a few others from the forties have captured my attention.

I wish someone had thought to write the names on the back of this one.  I think I remember that the boy in the back row was Russell and the next to the last girl in that row was Verna Schott, the girl I walked to school with every day.  Maybe the third boy from the left in the second row was Bobby and, even more maybe, the girl at the end of that row was Trudy.  For once, I wasn’t in the middle of the first row — but close enough.  I wonder what my mom thought about my sagging sock…

I remember the school as “Edison School” not Versailles so I looked it up on Google.  I found that Edison School (“Home of the Otters”) was, indeed, Versailles until September 14, 1942, when, after many construction delays due to strikes and the beginning of WWII, Edison School was opened.   It had been funded through the WPA and, according to the website:  From the six classrooms originally planned and built, Edison has grown to its present size of sixteen rooms (portables not included when this article was written) and all other facilities necessary to a modern, first-class school.

Our House at 1320 Versailles Avenue, Alameda — 1941-1947

Good to know.  Mostly though, I wonder who of all those children are still living and what the past 79 years have been for them.  I think I heard from a mutual friend that Verna died some years back — and now our friend, Sharon, has also died.  How I wish that someone could recognize and put me in touch with one or two of these “kids.”  And where was our teacher, anyway?  I think it was Miss Thompson who was also the principal…

That’s the thing about memories…  They are best of all when they can be shared with someone who also remembers.



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