Friday, February 8, 2008

6th Grade Memories

When we were in th 6th grade, taught by Effie Foster, there were two outstanding memories for me.

First, was my most embarrassing moment in grade school. At about that time the school lunch programs were being set up across the country. To make room for a kitchen the first and second grade coat closets were combined into one room.

I am sure there were no standards regarding equipment and at that time few if any refrigerated trucks. In our school kitchen there would have been only room for a regular refrigerator which would not have had enough space to keep the food and individual milk cartons cold.

Anyway, for lunch I had a carton of chocolate milk, a real novelty at that time, during Mrs Fosters reading period I became ill, all over my desk, my clothes and the floor! It was so traumatic for me that to this day I will not drink chocolate milk!

I know some of you wont be able to understand what a big deal that was to me but being a girly girl it was awful!!!

The second item I remember was the reading period after lunch in which Mrs. Foster read the classics to the class. The book we probably all remember the most was "Uncle Toms Cabin'. She would get so emotional while reading it she would cry. It was probably one of the first times for me to have ever heard of slavery.

Since we had few African Americans in Chautauqua Couty I doubt we thought much about their civil rights. However, when I worked at Hankins Drug Store much later, anytime an African American came in they would order at the counter and then take their drinks outside, not because they were told to but this was probably what they did across the country.

There was an African American who lived and worked on the the Jarvis Ranch, I think his name was Oscar. Two or three times a year he would knock on our door and ask to speak to 'Mr. Floyd' then he would step off the porch and wait for dad. He would ask for money which dad would give him. Dad never explained or talked about it and later Tres Kill who also lived on the ranch would reimburse him.

As I type this it makes me sad.

14 comments:

wayne woodruff said...

I, like you, remember the "bad" choclate milk I got at the CV grade school. I did not get sick, just spit out the sour stuff all over my desk.
If I remember correctly, the first black/colored/negro I ever saw was one of the basketball players from Sedan. And he was so good, I wished I hadn't seen him.

Gary White said...

I had forgotten how they shoehorned the kitchen into the grade school building. I must have chosen plain milk that day, because I have no memory of the bad chocolate version.

Gary White said...

As for Effie Foster, you might take a look at my piece on her several months ago. I think it is still up. I definitely remember her crying in the sad parts of Uncle Tom's Cabin.

Naomi said...

Nancy,
I too have fond memories of Effie and the 6th grade. Uncle Tom's Cabin will forever remain in my memories. We were in Canada a few years ago and stopped and saw the place where the "Underground Railroad" surfaced in Canada. I bought a copy of the book and read it again.
I also remember when "Mrs. Foster" gave me extra points for memorizing the entire poem of "The Wreck of the Hesperus." I still remember the first few lines, but the memory is going.
When Effie had her auction, my husband came down for it and bought her school bell to add to my bell collection. It is one of my prized possessions.
She could call me down for things I shouldn't be doing but I always liked her and respected her in spite of her "fiery red hair".

Phil Foust said...

Good memories, Nancy. The grade school had a aroma that I still recall at times when 'something comes close'. Not a bad smell but possibly arising from so many meals cooked in a rather small area.

In regard to your dad giving money; I remember at Dexter we lived close to the railroad tracks and my dad would never refuse a hobo asking for food or even a bit of money. Another time I remember a fellow that had a history of 'hitting the bottle' asking dad for some money. Dad mentioned that he was bit low on funds at the time and the man says, "Hell, Jesse ... here ya go." ... (as he handed him $10.00).

Gary White said...

As for the aroma, I would bet that one component of that smell was the oil-based sweeping compound they always used on those old wooden floors.

DFCox said...

Nancy your memories of Oscar and of Tres Kill are most interesting. Oscar was always a perfect gentleman. Where were you living when Oscar would come to your door? I have a hazy memory of my father doing something much like you describe Floyd doing. I do know that Tres and my father were good friends.

Phil Foust said...

Tres is possibly another good subject for some memories?

wayne woodruff said...

Who was Tres Kill? I remember hearing that name multiple times when growing up in CV, but as far as I know, I never saw the person. I think her name was used in conjunction with Brady Meldrum??

Anonymous said...

Tres Kill was from a large family that lived up around Moline. She was the first certified physical therapist in the state of Kansas and was well known for her work in this field.

She inherited a portion of the Jarvis Ranch west of Cedar Vale upon the death of Marc (or Mark) Jarvis. She received the land on the south side of the highway which split the ranch. The remaining part or north part of the ranch established a sizeable trust for the Jarvis family decendents. This was where Ed and Jenny Snyder lived in the 50's through the 70's.

Tres lived a long life on the ranch but moved to Winfield to a house near me at an old age, dying at nearly 100 within the last ten years or so.

Her sister, Helen Gabriel was director of nurses at Newton Memorial Hospital for a number of years and she lived on the ranch at CV at one time with Tres. Helen's son, Tony, went to CVHS for awhile, maybe even grade school. It seems like Tony may be deceased.

Tres had a close companion who had been a resident at Winfield State Hospital who helped with household work, but I think she passed away before Tres.

Tres probably would be a very interesting subject for a blog article if anyone really knew the whole story of her life.

Does anyone have more knowledge of Tres? If so, please add to my bit. By the same token, if I have written anything that needs correction, please do so.

Diane Archer Bradbury said...

I don't know why, but anonymous received the credit for the last comment, but it was ME! Diane Bradbury.

I wanted to add that the person my dad had given loans to as written about in my dad's article was the same person Nancy was telling about - Oscar. Daddy never spoke about him, but I think my mother was the one who told me the story.

Phil Foust said...

For my entire life I have read quotations and bits of interesting information by 'anonymous' along with the observation of countless grants to schools and other deserving entities. Wonderment of this very wise and productive and generous person has at last been escaped.

'Anonymous' is (in fact) our own Diane Archer Bradbury! This may very well be the single most revealing bit of news in the whole (wide) world this day. *Daba, it is with pride and honor to know ya!

* Diane Archer Bradbury Anonymous

Anonymous said...

It has come to my attention that perhaps the (in fact) portion of the above comment should be omitted. (It seems another of our erstwhile contributors has made similar claim to being 'anonymous'.)

On a positive note; it is with pride and honor that I can inform you that I am *familiar with the previously unknown 'anonymous'. It is either Diane or Naomi. Or both? Or not?

* So to speak.

Phil Foust said...

Pardon me, but unless I am mistaken ... Naomi has never been 'anonymous'.