Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Halloween Party 1953

This photo was taken in the community gym, but I don't recall who sponsored the Halloween party--perhaps the youth canteen. I found seven members of the class of 1957 in this photo--but I don't know who is behind some of the masks. The non-class members I recognize are Danny, Joyce, Larry, Mary Ann, Wilma, Murray, Don, Gerry, Joyce, and Bob from Polo.

Can you find the seven members of the class of 1957 in this photo? Are you behind a mask?

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Where did you live in high school?

Home on Hannah Avenue

My parents owned this home from 1951-1958, then moved to Lincoln Street until 1996 when they moved to the Pinecrest Apartments. However, it was the third house Dad bought in Mt. Morris that year. It was his habit to buy a home for his family sight unseen by my mother. I think she got tired of remodeling old clunkers, and said NO to the nice new home in the Carr Addition on the east side of town because she thought it was too small. So then he bought a new two story on the east end of Lincoln Street, but it was too small also. So he traded that home with DeKonings who lived in the lovely big old house on Hannah Avenue. It also had room for Dad's truck since it had a large barn/garage, a full basement, full attic, 4 bedrooms, and a den/office that doubled as a music room.

This was a great "kid" house. Within two blocks of us lived the Mayos, Bearmans, Stevens, Davies, Dohlens, Zumdahls, Priemers, Sweets, and Knowles, although not all at the same time. It had a tree in the front yard (not in photo) that was perfect for climbing, and I staked my horse in the back acre. Mom had a huge garden (although that wasn't so great for kids because we had to help) and for awhile we even had chickens (loose zoning). For slumber parties, I took over the living room and Dad's office/music room, and my sister Carol had hers (with Rabbit, Ole, Chickie, Mary Lynn and others whose names I've forgotten) in the attic which had a high pitch and windows on 3 sides. I could have the whole CBYF group (probably 20 kids or so) on the front porch. When Tina K. moved to Florida after our junior year, I had all the girls in the class of 57 in the living room for a good-bye party. Different groups used our barn for floats. I can't identify this one (there were 4 children in our family in high school in the 50s), don't think it was a class float, but perhaps an organization. If it wasn't built in our barn, I have no idea why I have the photo. Can you identify it?

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Libby Mayo Woody

Nettie E. 'LIBBY' WOODY - Nettie E. "Libby" Woody, 69, of South Beloit died Saturday, Sept. 9, 2006, in the loving care of her family. She was born to Earl and Ruby (Wilson) Mayo on July 26, 1937, in Atlanta, Ga. Nettie married the love of her life, Earl Woody, on March 12, 1955, in Nazarene Church of Dixon. She worked for many years as a supervisor at McCleary Industries in South Beloit. [from Rockford Register Star]

If you have the full obituary for Libby, please e-mail me and I'll post it here. Libby and I were close friends in elementary school when we lived across the street from each other. Our fathers worked together briefly in the house painting business--one of several that spun off from my dad's entrepreneurial mind. I remember her bright red curly hair and bubbly, vivacious personality--and could she talk with her hands! She left school before graduation, but often returned for our reunions.

Kids are mean about names, aren't they? I have our 8th grade class photo (Mrs. Burstrom) where Libby Mayo is standing next to Betty Labbe. Betty had an older brother named Bob. We used to chant, "If Libby Mayo married Bob Labbe (pronounced Labby), she'd be Mrs. Libby Labbe." We thought we were so funny!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Mt. Morris Boy Scouts

This photo was probably taken in either 1951 or 1952 because they all seem to be pre-adolescent. I count six members of the class of 1957. Two were in the class of 1956 and two class of 1958--if my memory serves--and if often doesn't.

Quiz: Do you remember the name of the scout leader? Where was this photo taken? Who was the den mother when they were in Cub Scouts?

Monday, October 23, 2006

Can you identify class of 1957 members?

I can find 6 members of the class of 1957 in this photo, which I think was taken in March 1956 when we were juniors and Mt. Morris won a sectional (I think that's what it was called). Perhaps you can't tell it from the photo, but people dressed up to go to ball games in those days--not church clothes, but probably better than school wear. Our wardrobes had a lot more variety in the 50s than the 15 kinds of blue jeans and t-shirts kids wear today.

Quiz: I can spot 3 cheerleaders in the photo, one former cheerleader, and one future cheerleader. Can you name them? Also, I see 2 cousins, a father and son, and a brother and sister in this photo--can you name them?

Update: Murray has identified this as the Fulton Holiday Tournament, which probably means it was in Dec. 1955 and not the spring.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Lester Mayes

The last time I saw Les was at a class reunion, but I don't remember which one. Our 20th? I think he was a popular guest at many reunions.

ROCK ISLAND — Services for Lester Mayes, 85, who died Tuesday, Oct. 3, were held at the St. James Lutheran Church, Rock Island, on Friday, Oct. 6. Lester was a former teacher of industrial arts in the Mt. Morris High School from 1953 to 1965.

From the Hodgson Funeral Home site:

Online condolences may be left for the family at www.hodgsonfuneralhome.com Lester was born on September 20, 1921 in Kinderhook, Illinois, the son of Orlando and Freida (Hack) Mayes. He served in the Army Air Corps during World War II, in the 460th Bomber Group, stationed in Italy. He married Marjorie Reed on June 17, 1948 in Cambridge, IL. Lester earned his bachelors at Western Illinois University, and his masters at the University of Illinois. He was an industrial arts teacher in the Mt. Morris, Rock Island, and then the Moline school district, retiring in 1984. Lester was a longtime member of St. James Lutheran Church, Rock Island, where he was active for many years on the church council. He belonged to the Moline Retired Teachers group. He served on the local board for the American Cancer Society and was active in their fundraising. He also worked very extensively with, and served on local and state boards of the Alliance for the Mentally Ill. For a time, he delivered Meals on Wheels. In his free time, he enjoyed woodworking, hunting and fishing, and spending time with his family. Survivors (and spouses) include his wife, Marjorie, Rock Island; daughters, Ruth E. (Mark) Paunicka, Champaign, IL, and Diana L. Mayes, Bettendorf; sons, Paul A. (Ann) Mayes, Muscatine, IA, Marvin Mayes, Peoria, IL, and Larry L. (Michel) Mayes, Davenport; six grandchildren; sister, Rebecca (Marvin) Blair, Parker, CO; and brothers, Paul O. (Nancy) Mayes, Palm Court, FL, Perry D. (Joan) Mayes, Bettendorf, and Ted (Jill) Witham, Bowling Green, OH. His parents, sisters, Irma Willdrick and Nettiebeth Dalton, and brother, Daniel Mayes, preceded him in death. "

Saturday, October 21, 2006

MMHS in our freshman year 1953-1954

Remember when we had to run between two buildings? The part with the gymnasium was built first. Brrr. . .it was a cold hike to classes, wasn't it? When was the rest of the building built?

Friday, October 20, 2006

Our second class reunion

The Mt. Morris High School graduating class of 1957 held its 10 year reunion at the Mt. Morris VFW on July 1, 1967 with 30 of the class members present, along with friends, husbands and wives. Dancing and reminiscing followed the smorgasboard and program. Members had come from as far away as Hawaii (stationed in the Navy), Texas, and California to attend.

Today's quiz: Who is the mystery woman in the back row hidden by Jean's head? How many years before the guys would be trading those skinny ties for fat ones? Our first guest and commenter was a member of what very famous class of MMHS?