It has long been my desire to visit the Old Manchester Museum because my 6th grade class, taught by Miss Helena Booth, and
another 6th grade class taught by Miss Libby Saretski were the first to attend school there, from January to June 1948,
after it had been renovated to accommodate Washington School’s growing population. The photo was taken at the
end of that school year. It must have been a very special occasion, since Mr. Illing was there, but I don’t remember why
only seven of us students were photographed. In all my years of education, that one was my happiest, and that may be true
also for Nancy Weir Gustafson, also in the picture. She is third from the left in
the front row and I am on the far right. My father is in the middle row, next to Miss Lutz. By the way, my paternal grandfather, a
weaver in Portadown, Ireland, came to Manchester to work for Cheney Brothers.
Alayne Murphy Gelletly April 21, 2012
Left to right in photo:
Front Row: Robert Johnson, Jacqueline Pillard, Nancy Weir Gustafson, Carol Johnson, Walter Klar, Sandra Taggart Jenkins, Alayne (Bunny) Murphy Gelletly.
Middle Row: Mr. Fred Murphy (Alayne’s father), art teacher Miss Hazel Lutz, Washington School principal Miss Catherine Shea, 6th grade teacher Miss Helena Booth, 6th grade teacher Miss Libby Saretski.
Back Row: Superintendent of Schools Mr. Arthur Illing, Mrs. ____, Mrs. ____, Mrs. Marge Klar (Walter's mother), Mrs. Betty Weir (Nancy’s mother), Virginia Brown.
In window: Georgetta Dupont.
I think the unnamed women are mothers of the other students in the photo.
Sandra is on crutches because she broke her leg one evening playing softball with the neighborhood kids in an empty lot on the southeast corner of West and Cooper Hill Streets.
Ed. Note: As Ms. Gelletly mentions in her message, the school building the people are standing in front of is what is today the Old Manchester Museum. To see a picture of the Museum, please click here.