Leo’s Studio: “Smile on the Count of 4…One, Two, Four!”

Preface: This 2007 article comes from the Valley Scoop. It highlights the work of Laurence “Chauncey” Morgan who operated Leo’s Studio for decades. Many Franklin class pictures were taken by this great man or one of his photographers. Leo’s Studio snapped shot after shot, year after year, of smiling kids, many shown on this site. Reprinted with special thanks and permission from Elaine and Craig Swanson.
6th Grade Mrs. Goraber59-60 (Small).jpg
It is hard to imagine that anyone in the Valley’s history could have been more of a common childhood memory than Laurence Morgan. Nearly, everyone who attended grade school between 1938 and 1992 (ages 78 to 21) has got to smile when they think back to picture days when the funny little man from Leo’s Studio came to school… but then causing smiles was always his specialty.
Laurence performance went beyond animated. He was a cross between Roger Rabbit and Jiminy Cricket with a bag full of
tricks. “Watch my ears wiggle,” he’d tell the class to get them looking right where he wanted with a smile on their face.
“Here, let me measure your nose,” he’d say as he drew a string from the camera to the nose of the kid posing for the portrait shot. Actually, the camera was pre-focused to length of the string.
Laurence had the know-how to get a class of seniors who could have cared less about a group shot to all look at him at the exact right moment. These were kids who had experienced his entire repertoire for years and yet they all fell for his seemingly spontaneous call to attention as he pressed the shutter button and got the shot they would all remember and cherish in their yearbook. Laurence truly knew what he was doing, even if they were unaware of it.
The irony of Laurence Morgan is that while thousands viewed him as this goofy school photographer, the privileged people that knew the whole story saw a man they loved, admired, and could only hope to emulate. “I can not imagine a better man to work for,” Bill Robertson told me recently. “He was so great at what he did, I’ve just tried copy his style.” Bill went to work at Leo’s Studio in 1979 as a photographer.
Shaun Hawley who joined Leo’s 6 months before Bill said, “He hired me right out of high school and he taught me how to run an ethical business, really he taught me how to live an ethical life.”
Laurence imbued “ethical” from the day he was born in 1919 at 3.5 pounds in Oregon… to the day he recently died at his Valley home on June 8th 2007. His father had brought the family to the Spokane Valley in 1926 to study for the ministry at Spokane University. While the college lost out to the Great Depression, it remains the namesake to University High School, University City, University Road and University Elementary.
Had Laurence not taken a custodian job at Leo’s Studio when his father passed away in 1936, he would have followed his father’s calling and become a minister. While he faithfully taught Sunday School and served God through the Gideons and other organizations all his life, Laurence’s true calling was to build and guide the Valley’s most amazing studio.
Laurence bought the business in 1951 from Leo Oestreicher who had started out while attending Spokane University. When the men’s dorm burned down Leo purchased the property and built his studio at 920 N. Walnut.
The original studio is now a one-man portrait studio run by Andy MCalpin, who bought the building and the portrait portion of Leo’s business from Laurence in 1994.
“This place heaved with activity when I came to work here in 1991,” Andy said as he gave us a tour of the vast underground basement that stretches far beyond the modest two-story main building. All together there were 57 rooms including numerous darkrooms and offices and workshops.
Each day throughout the shooting season as many as 6 photographers would bring in hundreds of negatives from schools within a vast territory that went from Missoula to Ellensburg in one direction and Oregon to the Canadian border the other. The negatives were developed the same night and soon they were rolling through two full-size, one-hour photo machines.
Meanwhile, on the main floor several employees ran a full service camera shop while others worked in the portrait studio. It took a staff of 65 to get all the work done that the funny little school photographer had going on behind the camera.
Today, the business Laurence built and the high standards he set are carried out at Leo’s Portraits, which Andy operates, and Leo’s Photography is run by Jim and Cathy Nelson at Appleway and Farr in the Valley.
A Humorous Side Story
Back in the forties Jack Cunningham of Cunningham Studios worked as a photographer for Leo Oestreicher along with Laurence Morgan. One day on the way to an outlying school they were run off the road and rolled their car several times.
Jack broke both his arms and Laurence had a broken leg,
but being die hard shutterbugs, they photographed themselves in front of the wrecked car. Leo made it into a postcard and sent it out to the local schools to explain why they would be running behind schedule.

Oral and Written History Collections

As stories, memories, and histories are collected, here is a place where they are posted. These recollections come from various sources including emails, interviews, transcriptions, letters, and notes. They serve to preserve history that may be useful to our students and all generations…past, present, and future. Many are eye witness reports of this learning community.
1941 girls knitting for soldiers013 (Small) (WinCE) (2).jpg
Some of the content may be good and some of it may be mixed… but it’s all part of the Franklin Story. Be sure to check back as there are dozens of histories that are in line to be posted, some involving the very earliest days of Franklin School. We invite Franklin friends and alumni to offer memories of their experiences here. Also, historical notations and questions may be found here for others to answer. Materials are generally organized by the most recent submission date… but not always. If a submitter offers two or more entries over time, they may be found together despite the dates they were submitted. This was done in an attempt to keep the biographer’s thoughts together.
If you’d like to provide information and need some ideas, Click here. Special thanks to the providers of this historical information.

Recollections of Dean Carriveau.
I rummaged around and found a couple of slides related to the choir. My dad only took one slide of an actual performance and unfortunately, it didn’t turn out too well. It was taken at the 1962 All City Christmas concert held at the Spokane Coliseum. The entire main floor of the venue was covered with band, string, chorus groups, and special choirs made up of kids from all of District 81 schools. They used to “pack the house” in those days as there was a huge parent interest and kid involvement in music.
In the group photo: I’m in the second row, fifth from the left. The other student from Franklin, Stanton (Stan) Parish is fourth from the right on the top row. I also included a picture taken at home before this particular concert. What a dork! Stan and I were in the 1963 seventh grade graduating class. You’ll recall that Franklin had two graduations that year. One for eight and one for seventh grades. They shipped us up to the brand new Ferris for eighth grade.
We would go to L.C. to practice after school two days a week.I wish I could remember the choir director’s name but it escapes me. She was a good musician and no nonsense. I was chewing gum one day and she literally slapped it out of my mouth. Maybe that’s why I forgot her name. She kept us busy performing for groups and different events in Spokane.
I also have an audio tape recorded in the sound booth of the Coliseum from the 1961 Christmas All City program. It’s just a portion of the evening and includes the band and orchestra’s rendition of “The Night Before Christmas”. My dad was able to get the master tape as my brother, Alan, narrated the selection. He also played the clarinet in the band and was in the Boys’ Choir prior to me.
Thanks, Brian, your photo really sparked a lot of neat memories for me.
Dean Carriveau
Class of 1963
May 18, 2011
Recollections of Kitty Lou (Kenney) Griffin. This is in connection to the next letter from Bill Guaglione.
Dear Mr. Shute,
Please tell Bill that my email address is kittysmail@aol.com
and that I would be delighted to hear from him!!!
When I was about 6, it was 1942 and Baxter Hospital was serving sick soldiers. Most of them, as I later understood it, had not received battle wounds, but I’m sure some had. My mother thought it would be a good idea if she and I wrapped what she called “baby feeding cans” with crepe paper and I think we tied them with ribbon, and then filled them with flowers from our garden to take to the soldiers at Baxter. We met and talked with several of them. It’s possible I went out to visit them again–but the memory of being there and talking with them remains strong. Afterward, several of them and I wrote to each other for a few years before losing touch. Bill, Stanley, Fred, and John, I think were their names. I have a kind of feeling that Bill’s last name was Gualine, spelled Gaglione or something like that.
Thank you for being a conduit! Bill is probably in his 80s now, and I’m 74!
Kitty Kenney Griffin
Recollections of Bill Guaglione and a request
Dear Dr. Shute,
It was a pleasure speaking with you this morning, April 3, 2010. As we discussed, my father, Bill Guaglione, has been hoping to correspond with Kitty Lou Kenney. Please see www.drshute.com/archives/000067.html, where you will find pictures of Kitty Lou.
Here is the story: Bill Guaglione was injured while in the Army
stationed at Moses Lake Airbase circa 1943. Bill convalesed at Baxter General Army Hospital in Spokane WA for many months. During his stay, Kitty Lou Kenney (approximately 6-7 yrs old), a student of Frankin Elementary visited Bill. When he became ambulatory, her family would take Bill to their house for weekend stays and then bring him back to the hospital. My father had been in correspondence with Kitty Lou, but lost touch many years ago. Kitty Lou even even invited Bill to her wedding. Bill would love to be able to correspond with Kitty Lou, but has not been able to locate her. If there is any way for you to help Bill reach out and locate Kitty Lou, it would be so appreciated.
Here is Bill’s contact information:
Bill Guaglione
c/o Daughter Diane LaPierre’s email address: dlap61@optonline.net
Recollections of Connie Oliver Ahrenberg who graduated from Franklin in 1960.
February 6, 2010
Dear Sir or Madam:
I graduated from Franklin Elementary School fifty years ago. My older sister had graduated three years before, and our younger sister and brother also attended Franklin before my family moved to California in 1966.
One of the things I remember most clearly about Franklin was the emphasis placed on English. By the time I entered high school, I had a comprehensive understanding of the structure-and the beauty-of our language.
After one year of college, I moved to California in 1965, where I met and married my husband in 1966. Over the following forty years, my command of the English language stood me in good stead with employers. I spent the last twenty-three years working in law as a legal assistant, where that attribute was valued by two of the top lawyers in the Phoenix area.
In 2006, my husband and I retired and moved to the mountains in Arizona because of my husband’s health. After working most of my adult life, I was concerned about what I was going to do with my time. I am an avid reader–consuming about fifty books a year–and, like all readers, have always wanted to contribute to our literature. However, as with most aspiring writers, I don’t want to write anything less than the Great American Novel.
I have, in the meantime, written my first children’s book, The Adventures of Henrietta the Hen (a copy of which is enclosed). While entertaining, it also carries a message which I believe is vital to children’s development: It is okay to be different. While our society strives to fit all our children into the proverbial “round hole,” many children just don’t fit. As a result, they spend their lives feeling inadequate.
Henrietta the Hen _edited-1 (WinCE).jpg
I had been corresponding with a niece who is deaf and has cerebral palsy (as a birth accident). She had questioned me about whether she had the right to be alive. Obviously, that revelation hurt and concerned me, and I did all I could to make her feel worthwhile and very important to all of us. I also realized that a lot of people have those same feelings, regardless of how little or how much they feel they are different from others.
Late one night, while standing on our front porch admiring the stars, Henrietta began to tell me her story. Over the next several months, Henrietta’s story expanded to its present, published form. Henrietta is a puny hen whom no one really wants or thinks will amount to anything. But Henrietta proves herself to be compassionate and able to solve problems and, given time, changes the other farm animals’ perception of her and of each other.
Since publishing Henrietta, I have completed a book for teenage girls which I plan to publish from the royalties from Henrietta. The second book, Witch in the Woods, follows a girl through a very difficult five year period. In addition, I have begun an adult novel.
Because of those long-ago teachers at Franklin and the love of English that they engendered in me, I would like to give your present students a copy of my book. I would like them to know that, not only can they embrace their own personality and uniqueness, they can even, sometimes in the years ahead, find their name on a book–or a picture–or a movie script–or an invention–or whatever their imagination takes inspires.
Sincerely, Connie Ahrenberg,
nee Constance Jo Oliver
(Franklin School, its staff and students thank you!)
Recollections of Robert Hoagland, Grandson of Gladys Hoagland-Knight, longtime Franklin Kindergarten teacher.
My Grandma Gladys started teaching around 1928 in the basement of the church at 10th and Perry. She taught only kindergarten. I don’t know when she started at Franklin but it was before I was born in 1937.
Gladys Hoagland-Knight 1958 (WinCE).jpg
She was a neat lady. There was always one request that she gave to parents: Your children must have gloves/mittens with a string through the sleeves. She lined up those kids and checked their glove/mittens and goulashes The goulashes had to be fastened or you did not leave!
I remember some years that she taught. She had a morning class and an afternoon class. I was told one year she had 54 kids in one class that was not a split. During her career she taught in the basement of a church, a Franklin classroom, and then in a converted house that was behind the school. She stated that when they took kindergarten out of the school district, some of the Franklin parents hired her to teach. She was paid by the parents and that the parents purchased the house so she could be at Franklin School.
There are many stories I could tell about my Grandmother, Gladys Hoagland Knight, but I will tell only a couple of them.
In the summer of 1950, my family was staying with Grandma. At the end of the school year, she decided to take a trip to Wisconsin, where she was born and raised. She had some relatives back there, but I don’t know how many. One day each of her three sons got a phone call with a question; “Do I have your permission to get married?” They all asked, “To who.” It was a fourth or fifth cousin she met in Clear Lake, South Dakota. I do not know the details, but they all said “yes.” She and her husband, Elmer Knight, showed up in a fancy black Packard. We had a really neat reception in my uncle’s back yard on 42nd and Latawah. She kept on teaching.
I also remember on Saturday nights before she got married, about 6 pm almost every Saturday, her teacher friend Miss Ogilive, Mrs. Winslow, and I don’t remember the 3rd person, would come to Grandma’s house to eat dinner; then out would come the cards and it was Canasta time until 11 pm. Then it was desert time followed by one more hand of Canasta, then home. This took place for at least 2 to 3 years that I can remember. They started with one deck and ended playing with three decks of cards. I will never forget my grandmother.
Robert Hoagland, Grandson of Gladys Hoagland-Knight
May 2009
Recollections of Donald Miller, Class of 1939
Donald Miller attended Franklin from 1934 to 1939. During this time, he lived at 4003 East 24th Avenue. Both of his parents died at a young age and Donald lived with his grandmother.
Don recalls that in the 1930s there was a crack that was about an inch wide that ran along the west wall of the original building. That crack went from the roof to the basement and the wind whistled through it. In fact, you could see daylight through the gap.
He recalls that the clinkers from the furnace were dumped onto the playground and that it hurt when you fell on them. When it was storming outside, Don’s teachers had the students dance inside to, “Captain Ziggy of the Horse Marines.”
During the time that Don attended Franklin, there were no hot lunches. Kids had to bring lunch from home. They could buy milk at school which came in little glass bottles. Don’s grandma wrapped his lunch in newspaper each day. She made her own bread and there was no fruit. Don has only good memories of Franklin and no bad ones.
In the winter, girls wore snow pants under their skirts and then took the pants off when they arrived at school.
Don got his first job at age 16. This place was Colliers [which later became Napa Auto] and he worked there until his retirement in 1990. In his hobby time, Don enjoys classical dance with his dance partner, Rowena. [see Centennial Party for photograph]
If Don could impart one piece of wisdom on a youngster, he says, “Have respect for your teachers and get all of the schooling you can.”
Donald Miller
June 8, 2009
Class of 1939
Recollections of Kiley Mossey, Class of 2009
Mary Margret McKenna-Warner was born on August 8th, 1925. She went to Franklin Elementary 1st-8th grades with her 8 brothers and sisters. She lived at 3007 E. 17th. Her father built the house for his family and it is still standing today.
She was 9th in a family of 10 children, Ed, Kenneth, George, Merlin, Ray, Nell, Alice, Ruby, Mary and Mac.
McKenna,left Nell,Alice,Rubie,Mary (WinCE).jpg
Left to right: Nell, Alice, Rubie, Mary McKenna
Kenneth died when he was 2. She and her sisters would walk down to the southeast corner of Ray and 17th, where there was a market. The market even had a saw dust floor. For a nickel she could buy a very large candy bar.
When she was little she and her siblings spat cherry pits right off the back porch. The seeds grew into a beautiful cherry tree that they liked to climb and pick cherries from.
When she was 18 she married Ronald J. Warner in 1943. Ronald and Mary had 8 children. There names were, Ron, Lynne, Gloria, Kim, Pat, Tim, Paul, and Steve. Lynne is my Grandmother.
When Franklin Elementary was refurbished, she was asked to come and see it again. She went and was overjoyed to see her old school and friends again. Mary loved to go to school and learn. She also loved to read, knit, and garden. Sadly, my Great Grandmother died of old age on April 3rd 2006.
I think it is really cool that I get to walk the same halls and maybe be in the same classroom that my great-grandma was in so long ago. I know that she would be blessed to know that I am enjoying Franklin Elementary as much as she did.
Kiley Mossey
Class of 2009
May 19, 2009
Recollections of Benita (Blue) Mason, Class of 1950
Below is what I have written of my Franklin School memories. I have scanned my class pictures, but am wondering how well they will come through if I email them to you. I will try one and see what you think. I can name everyone, except for the picture that is of the council and patrol when I was in the fourth grade and did not know all those “big” kids. Let me know what you would like me to do with them.
Three of us “Franklinites” were together in San Francisco this past week. One will be flying in next Thursday evening and she and I plan on meeting up at the Friday events. Would it be worthwhile for me to come by myself on Thursday.
Kindergarten (1941-1942) The teacher was Mrs. Hoagland who lived on the west side of Perry between 10th and 11th. At the time I went to kindergarten, it was not public, but I have no idea what the cost was. The actual signing up for kindergarten was in the little old two-story bungalow that then existed behind Liberty Park Methodist Church. I also remember the first day was held in the first grade room at Franklin, but as near as three of us can remember our class was held in a small area at the far west end of the first floor.
First and second grade (1942-1943 & 1943-1944) – Christie Reierson was our first grade teacher and then the next year moved to teaching the second grade, so our grade had her two years in a row. I particularly remember during the second grade that some of we girls went to school early, actually walking in almost total darkness during the winter because of the wartime daylight savings time being in effect, to knit squares that were sewn together to make afghans for the wounded servicemen being treated at the new and hastily thrown-together Baxter Hospital located just to the north of where the Veterans Hospital is now located. Miss Reierson must have been quite a good teacher and I have always thought we were fortunate to have her for two years as many of us became quite excellent students.
Third grade (1944-1945) – Alice Winslow was our teacher. She lived on the southeast corner of Southeast Boulevard at maybe 12th or possibly 13th. My strongest memory from that school year occurred on a day in April of 1945 when the sixth grade teacher, Miss Rousseau, walked in the room with tears in her eyes and whispered to Miss Winslow. Miss Winslow then announced to us that President Roosevelt had died. The shock of seeing a teacher cry was as great as hearing that the President had died.
Fourth grade (1945-1946) – Beverly Donner was young, beautiful, married and a totally new exciting experience for us. Mrs. Donner was full of enthusiasm and knew how to elicit the very best from us. Sometime along in the spring, her husband Bill, who later became principal of Lewis and Clark High School, came to class and talked to us. He was very handsome in his military clothes. I can still see him sitting perched on a high stool telling us “war stories.”
Fifth grade (1946-1947) – The first semester our teacher was Agnes Blomberg. Miss Blomberg lived on 14th between Helena and Madelia (behind our house and two houses over). Miss Blomberg moved to teach the fourth grade the second semester. Possibly Mrs. Donner was pregnant and leaving teaching. Our teacher the second semester was John Kingsland. It was very different and quite exciting to have a male teacher. My main memory is that I enjoyed studying American history.
Sixth grade (1947-1948) – Our teacher Dorothea Rousseau, although of sturdy figure, was very well-dressed and quite attractive. I was impressed that she had her own car and drove to school, the only female teacher that did that. We studied early world and medieval history. After lunch Miss Rousseau read to us for a while. While I had always been a vociferous reader, it was Miss Rousseau who introduced me to Mary Poppins and Dr. Doolittle.
Seventh grade (1948-1949) – Our teacher was Edith Ogilvie. She was the stereotypical “old maid” school teacher with dowdy clothes, glasses and her hair pulled back in a bun, She had a badly deformed ankle. Our information may not have been correct, but we believed she had broken it as a child and it had never been set. She always struck me as rather a pathetic person, but I liked her well enough. She lived in the old Ridpath apartments (later rebuilt as the Ridpath Hotel) that burned about that time. I remember particularly enjoying learning about Central and South America that year.
Eighth grade (1949-1950) – The memory of our teacher, Laura Sperber, shall always trouble my conscience. While, as a whole, the class consisted of good students eager to learn, we also discovered the opposite sex during that year. There was a group of us gals, best students all, who spent a great deal of time planning the next Saturday night’s house party. Because our class had very few boys, our quite willing “targets” were the boys who had graduated from Franklin the year before. There were times, when our twittering (1940’s/50s “twittering”) got out of hand and Miss Sperber would stand in front of the class in tears, not knowing what to do with us. She gave up teaching after that year and I shall always feel responsible. She lived on 13th between Helena and Pittsburg and I did go visit her occasionally during my high school years and always felt very welcome. Once more, we studied American history – my favorite.
The first principal while I was there was a Mr. Austin and then Walter Wildey became principal. Sometime during my time at Franklin, Mr. Wildey had a heart attack and was off from work for a period of time.
Benita (Blue) Mason
Class of 1950
May 15, 2009
Recollections of Peggy Walker Jordan, Class of 1948
Dear Dr. Shute,
I enjoyed your article in Nostalgia Magazine about Franklin School. It brought back many memories of my years there. My 3 brothers, my sister and I were enrolled there starting in 1934, until my sister graduated in 1958.
I too must have been a member of the cloak closet Kindergarten in 1940-41, altho [sic] I didn’t know it then. I also had Miss Hoagland for my 1st grade teacher.
During those years we all learned to knit and we each knit squares (which I am sure were anything but). Miss Hoagland would then crochet the squares together to make afghans which were our contribution to the war effort. I remember we had our picture in the newspaper and were really excited about our achievement.
During 7th or 8th grade we girls went to Grant School once a week for Home Economics class. The boys had shop classes I think.
All in all I really enjoyed my grade school experiences at Franklin. Thank you again for the article which brought back some of these memories.
Mrs. Peggy Walker Jordan
Class of 1948
May 13, 2009
Recollections of Laurel Hanson (Grandinetti). Class of 1961
My name is Laurel Hanson(Grandinetti). I started first grade in 1953. Mrs. Nicewander was my teacher. I had Miss Danielson for second grade. I graduated in June, 1961. We had the last 8th grade class Franklin ever had. They combined both 8th grades into one classroom in the little white building east of the school where the parking lot is now. Mr. Hamilton agreed to be our teacher if he could get some help. Miss Ogilvie taught us history and Mr. Leinwebber taught Science and the boys P.E. Right after scool was out, they tore the building down.
All three of my kids went to Franklin. My daughter had Mrs. Ritchey for a teacher. She walks by my house on her way home every day. I still live three houses from Franklin. I enjoy watching the kids coming and going to and from school. This is a great neighborhood to grow up in. I just can’t move away.
Laurel Hanson (Grandinetti)
Class of 1961
May 13, 2009
Recollections and information from Kenneth Smith. Son of Ralph Smith and grandson of Jennie Hughes-Smith.
My dad’s father came to the Kellogg/Pine Creek area in the 1880s. He was born in Augusta, Georgia, and was probably other places in between. I know that his mother, my great grandmother was also in Kellogg and ran a boarding house. Given the history of Kellogg and Wallace, I am thinking that this was a place where regular folks made their home and not where folks had visitors who paid for each visit. I have yet to find much about their stay there but hope to talk to some folks in Kellogg when I come out.
My dad’s mother was born in Washington D.C. and somehow came to Moscow, Idaho, in the 1880/1890s. I know that she graduated from Moscow High School in 1895 and from the University of Idaho in 1899. She married and moved to Kellogg the summer after her graduation.
The cousin I am visiting in on my mother’s side.
Kenneth Smith
Son of Ralph Smith and grandson of Jennie Hughes-Smith.
Ralph graduated from Franklin in 1925
May 9, 2009
More recollections and information from Kenneth Smith. Son of Ralph Smith and grandson of Jennie Hughes-Smith.
They lived at E2914 17th Avenue. I have seen the house but don’t remember if it is the one below.
My grandmother was a “housewife.” I don’t believe that she had a paying job. She married my grandfather right after she graduated from the University of Idaho in 1899. He was a miner in the Wallace, Idaho area. They lived in Wardner, a “suburb” of Wallace. I am told that she moved to Spokane because she felt that the Wallace area was not a good place to raise kids.
My dad graduated from Washington State College in 1935 with a degree in Electrical Engineering. This was the middle of the depression and there were no jobs. He ended up getting a job with the Spokane Police Department where he ended up working for 25 years until he retired in 1965. During his last years with the Department, he went to school to get his teaching certificate. When he retired, he got a job as a teacher in Wilson Creek, WA. Unfortunately he died the following Spring from a heart attack.
As for his siblings, he had 2 older brothers (Berthold and Leonard) and an older sister (Amie) all of whom attended Franklin Elementary School. All would go to Lewis and Clark HS. Berthold and Leonard graduated from there. My father went there 1 year and then went to North Central where he graduated. It appears Amie attended, but did not graduate from Lewis and Clark.
Berthold went to the U of Idaho where he died during his first year as a result of what was described as a “turned bowel” whatever that might be. I don’t know where Leonard went to college but he graduated from Gonzaga Law School in 1956 and became a lawyer in Spokane. Amie moved to California sometime. We met Leonard but not Berthold or Amie (who died before we were born).
Kenneth Smith
Ken’s father attended Franklin and graduated in 1925
January 31, 2009
Question posed by Ed Garretson. Perhaps someone knows the answer.
For shots of Pullman and Campus go to the WSU Holland Library site— esp the MASC site (manuscripts, archives and special collections) there you will find many, many photos.
I came to WSU in the Fall of 1970 to join the History Dept as an Early Modern European historian. I just retired from WSU last May. Now I devote my time to the County Historical Society.
April 19, 2009
I read the article in Nostalga magazine on the Franklin school. I am curious about the first, 1889, Franklin and wonder if you know the architect of that structure?
Ed Garretson
WSU, History Dept. retired
Whitman County Historical Society, archivist
March 30, 2009
Thanks for the reply. This site on the Spokane District is most impressive.
The architect I am interested in is Hermann Preusse. He was active in Spokane both before and after the fire, and as one of the few architects in Town there did many buildings right after 1889. In 1892 he opened an office in Pullman with the hope of being the architect for what became WSU. I did a number of buildings in the area, including the 1892 Pullman School and the St. Scholastica Academy in Colton. Soon he left the area– not getting the WSU job. He remained active in Sopkane only until about 1903 when his partner Zittel took over. His name is attached to the Uniontown Catholic church which was planned in 1892, although not built until 1905 and then we do not know if the original plan was followed.
So, that why I was interested. Nice article in the Nostagla.
Ed Garretson
WSU, History Dept. retired
Whitman County Historical Society, archivist
April 7, 2009
Recollections of Wendy Hinckle
Class of 1963

The cafeteria rule was that all food had to be eaten. I could not
stand the disgusting, slimy canned spinach that they served. I had my own form of sit-in. I refused to eat it and just sat there. I was often the last person left in the cafeteria, so the custodians finally had to dismiss me in order to put the tables away. I don’t know how the other kids managed to gag that stuff down. Maybe they hid it in their napkins, and I wasn’t smart enough to think of that.
Wendy Hinckle
Class of 1963
March 29, 2009
Recollections of Dean Carriveau
Class of 1963

I’m enjoying your wonderful website and its well written and fascinating Franklin history. All of the photos and the names – boy, does it ever bring back fond memories. Doug Clark was one grade behind mine and I remember some of his antics. I get a kick out of his column when he brings them up. Your list of past principals includes Seth Huneywell. His brother Doug was in my class and I knew Seth as a boy several years younger. I didn’t know he had been a principal of Franklin. As some have already mentioned, we stayed with the same kids from year-to-year throughout our time at Franklin.
I remember rulers being applied to the knuckles or the palm of the hand (your choice) by some teachers. If you really got out of hand, Mr Hardin would give you hacks in his office. The trip down the hall to his office and anticipation of what awaited there were far worse than his hacks. Miss Olgivie, my seventh grade teacher, used to whack us on the feet or legs with her cane if they were out in the aisles of the rows of old-fashion desks bolted to the floor. Discipline at Franklin was harsh but tempered with love and an honest interest in our well-being and success as individuals.
You probably have found a number of class photos my dad left at the school. Reda showed me the book they were contained in when I was there during my practicums and student teaching. I believe I shared with you that my brothers and I all attended Franklin, the first first in 1946. At least one Carriveau boy was in continuous attendance; I was the last to leave in 1963.
I well remember the rows of desks and their round holes for ink wells. It was always a temptation to lean forward and “mess” with the student sitting on the seat attached to the front of your desk. Those desks, the hardwood classroom floors, high ceilings and spitting radiators were the norm when I left in June of ’63. We graduated that year as seventh graders. We were going to be the first group of only 800 students to attend the newly completed Ferris High School as eighth graders. Ferris opened with only grades eight through ten in September of ’63.
One of our favorite before and after school activities was a football like game played on the lower playground affectionately called “Killakid”. As I recall, there were no real rules other than you had to pass the ball off to someone else lest you be caught and “dogpiled” by the chasing herd of fellow players. We used to come back from the field wet and covered with mud. Once I was so dirty after a session of this mayhem (wearing white cords), Mr. McCarty sent me to the office and they sent me home to get clean clothes.
I remember we used to practice square dancing in the gym in preparation for the all-city program held each year at the Colliseum. We practiced our moves to Billy Vaughn’s “Wheels” and Laurence Welk’s “Calcutta” played on a booming Necomb portable record player. Wow!
I also fondly remember my first male teacher, Mr. Charles Dysart. He took a tremendous interest in his kids and held an afterschool model airplane club for anyone interested, boys and girls. We built and flew neat little airplanes made from balsa wood. At the end of our school year, he awarded a lucky kid, Karl Olson, a large and beautiful flying model he had built himself.
Here are the first of the photos I’ve scanned. When my father, Walter, passed away in 2007 I distributed my brothers’ scrapbooks to them containing their class photos. I see that you already have a number of them on your site. I have scanned my class beginning in 1955. It’s interesting to note that my Ferris class of ’68 fortieth reunion this past summer yielded a great photo of Franklin kids. Some of us had been together since that first day we arrived, apprehensive and wide-eyed, in Mrs. Knight’s little kindergarten house in September of ’55.
If this format doesn’t work, I can put the photos on a CD for you. Just let me know. I tried to make a scanner device for color slides following some internet advice but am not happy with the results. I’m just going to project and shoot them with a digital camera on your recommendation
Thank you for all of your hard work, Brian. It was truly a pleasure looking at your website and the treasures within.
Dean Carriveau
Class of 1963
March 26, 2009
Recollections of Dean Carriveau
Class of 1963

I remember the Franklin historical piece we did as a class project in John Schuler’s sixth grade class. I remember that we found the first Franklin site down by the UP rail yards, surveyed the site using location records, and then took slides of several of us standing where the building’s corners had once been. It was just one segment of that project that I can remember. We had a recorded soundtrack to go with the slide show. I sure wish I could get my hands on that presentation but am afraid Mr. Schuler is long gone. He used to write frequent and vitriolic letters to the editor and those stopped about a dozen years ago.
I know there are more photos, I just need to look for them. Somewhere there are photos of a Blue and Gold dinner in the gym and others of the Franklin Follies.
The last two photos of this batch were taken in my Franklin first grade classroom. The first is from Mrs. Neiswender’s first grade class in 1956-1957 (I sent this to you earlier). Note that there were thirty kids in our class! The second photo was taken in the same classroom 47 years later (then Cathy Tilton’s first grade classroom). I used to spend a lot happy hours in there during the three years I volunteered and completed my practicum hours and student teaching at Franklin. If you look closely you can see the wooden cabinet on the wall in the left background of the picture and the frame from the bulletin board. We didn’t have nearly as much “stuff” on the walls in the early days. Cathy was so helpful and graciously shared her class with me. It was always the high point of my week to read to her kids or help with their lessons. Cathy was also one of the few remaining younger teachers who could play the piano for her charges. Growing up, I thought all primary teachers could play the piano. What did I know.
Joan Yake, Niki Gadau, and Char Ferrante also unselfishly opened their doors to me and were superior role models to emulate (or try to). Char eventually became my master teacher and I use many of her techniques today on a daily basis. What a job she did opening her bag of tricks and dumping them out on the table for me to share. She carefully guided me and then generously handed over the classroom reigns, allowing me to learn from my mistakes and lack of experience. She laughed at me out loud one day when I whined out of frustration that “the kids aren’t minding or listening to me”. That was possibly the best advice anyone had ever given to me. My student teaching in her classroom was the ride of a lifetime and I wouldn’t want to change it one bit.
Franklin is a treasure and it will truly break my heart if anything should ever happen to it. Some of the most rewarding experiences of my lifetime occurred at Franklin, as a student, and later as a nascent teacher pursuing a second career. The faculty and staff nurtured me as a child and again as an adult in order to ensure my success. For that, I will be forever grateful.
Dean Carriveau
Class of 1963
December 12, 2008
Recollections of David H. Beadle
Class of 1942

Dear Dr. Shute,
What a pleasant surprise when looking through my March issue of Nostalgia to find the “History of Franklin Elementary.” My father was a career Army officer which meant that I would be the new kid on the block about every two years at a new school. Just prior to World War II dad was transferred from McChord Field to Spokane and I discovered the friendliest place I had ever lived and a grade school I learned to love.
Enclosed is a picture of my 1942 graduating class. I am the third guy from the left in the first row with the Argyll socks.
David Beadle1942 (WinCE).jpg
On the back of the picture are the signatures of my teachers, fellow classmates and friends. I am also sending you a copy of the Franklin Key, our eighth grade class newspaper. This was given to me several years ago by a fellow classmate, Verna Anttony. She’s the pretty gal standing right behind me. After not seeing each other many years, we happened to meet again at an RV park near Apache Junction, Arizona.
Sitting beside me on my right is Bobby Walker. Our principal, Mr. Henry was also our history teacher. During class one day, Bobby and I were discussing what we would do after school. Unfortunately for us, Mr. Henry heard us and we were ordered to the principal’s office after class. There he administered a couple of whacks to our bottoms with a wooden paddle. It really didn’t hurt very much, but Bobby and I never talked in class again. I know if that were to happen today the teacher would be in a great deal of trouble, but back then no one thought anything about it and our parents would feel we justly deserved the punishment.
Mrs. Sperber was our eighth grade teacher and I thought she was the greatest. Although she would become a little bit perturbed with me being late to class so often. Perhaps this was understandable since I lived only a block away in the two-story white house on the corner of 17th and Cook.
Very truly yours,
David H. Beadle
Class or 1942
March 7, 2009
Recollections of Ed Huneke
Grandson of Judge Huneke in Franklin-Railroad Matter

I left Spokane after graduating from law school at Gonzaga, in 1965, but I am connected to it still, anyway. LC ’58, had our 50th last September.
So I just read your article in Nostalgia, to which I have subscribed for three or five years, and I love it. My note/reason for this note to you is that your article noted the jury verdict in my grandfather’s
courtroom, Judge William August Huneke (Judge from 1905 to 1940).
Yes, I remember my grandfather, I think he died when I was about 8 or so, but we would go over to their house on Corbin Park on Sunday afternoons, and I remember him well.
The verdict in Judge Huneke’s courtroom was what we call a “condemnation” case, where the railroad could take property but had to pay for it. Same as our State, and my first job for three years out of lawschool was working for the Attorney General’s office in Olympia, and I had jury trials in 19 counties around the state for the State to pay and take property for our new/then Interstate Highway system. I did that 1965-1968. So those jury verdicts are well-known to me, and again, fun to read about one in my grandfather’s courtroom.
So it also made me wonder, but I am not at all sure this makes sense, that J. Huneke’s two children, my Dad John, born in 1909 and my Aunt Helen, born in 1905, would they have attended Franklin? I think probably not if it was down on Trent and Grant streets, because they lived up at Corbin Park, north side, and attended NC for high school.
But the article was also fun because it mentions the architect who also did Lewis and Clark, a very fine school and very nicely renovated, we all loved the return to it last September. And also, as for architects, one of my mother’s (Connie Hamblen Huneke) relatives was Harold Whitehouse who did St. John’s Cathedral, some of the UW buildings over here, and others, so his style was somewhat like Loren Rand’s.
So, fun pictures, wonderful article. I am going to mail a copy to my
sister who lives in Annapolis.
Keep up the stories, they are fun.
Ed Huneke (Judge Huneke’s Grandson)
Friend of Franklin
March 6, 2009
Recollections of Camille Haskins (Camille Erickson back in the day)
In the 7th grade we went to Lincoln grade school and learned to sew on “treadle” sewing machines. In the 8th grade we had “Home Ec” every Friday at Libby Jr. High and learned to sew on “electric” sewing machines. We made an apron in the 7th grade and an ugly blouse in the 8th grade that no one ever wore again. I have an 8th grade graduation picture and any other class picture from Franklin. I even had to play a piano solo at the Halloween parent program and 8th grade graduation at Franklin.
Camille (Erickson) Haskins
Class of 1963
February 11, 2009
I have written some more comments from the dark recesses of my brain trying to remember what I was like as a child at Franklin many moons ago!
I lived at East 2227 17th Ave.(3 blocks from school and the house is still in the family) I attended Franklin from 1955 – June 1963.
We had an hour for lunch (12-1:00) so we walked home every day.
After P.E. class, we were provided white towels and took group showers in the girls locker room. We kept our white snap shorts/shirts in baskets that were locked and stored in the locker room.
Hot lunch was 25 cents. Milk was 2 to 4 cents a bottle. We could not go outside to play unless we ate everything on our plate.
Home Ec. in the 7th grade was at Lincoln Elem. school (5th and Browne) We made aprons on a treadle sewing machine. In 8th grade we went to Libby Jr. High and made blouses on electric sewing machines.
Mrs. Spear (lst grade teacher) would break a pencil or wooden ruler over the knuckles of a misbehaving boy. The principal Mr. Hardin could administer “hacks” to bad boys using a wooden paddle.
Sixth grade teachers taught all subjects including P.E. and Art.
Eighth grade- We sat in old wooden desks with ink wells. Desk/Seat were all one with black metal trim. Teachers could smoke in the furnace room.
On Friday nights while in the 7th and 8th grades, we had square dancing parties in the gym, supervised by teachers.
My best friend Connie and I would take the bus on Saturday mornings to a book store downtown (John W. Graham Co.) and each buy one Nancy Drew Mystery book to share for a total of $1.04. We would stop at Newberry’s for a piece of cherry pie (85 cents) and catch the bus home spending less than $3.00 for the half-day adventure. The rest of the day would be spent reading the book and then exchanging it with a friend.
My favorite teacher was Marion Morgan (7th grade). She was even-tempered and did not have any “teacher’s pets.” We later taught together at Garry when I was a beginning Speech-Language Pathologist.
Few children rode the bus to school. Most of us walked. There were no special education classrooms at Franklin.
I have a box of old class pictures,pictures of us cheerleaders, report cards, copies of the 8th grade graduation ceremony and a picture of me playing the piano solo. Tell me what you would like to see.
Camille (Erickson) Haskins
Class of 1963
February 25, 2009
Recollections of Dianne Blumhagen LaBissoniere
Franklin Class of 1962

[Brian: Do you remember the streetcar that traveled to the park, or was that gone by the time you were a tot?] No. Only city buses. [Brian: Also, did you attend kindergarten in the house along Mt. Vernon?] Yes, my kindergarten class was in the old house. I remember that there were sugar cubes, probably for the teacher, Mrs. Knight, and her coffee. I had never seen sugar cubes before. I remember snitching one and sucking on it until it was gone. What a treat for a little girl.
My parents were students at Whitworth College and my Dad’s first teaching job was at Grant. I started kindergarten at Whitworth, then in February of the kindergarten year for me, our family bought our home on 17th. That’s when I started school at Franklin.
At the time we grew up, Lincoln Park had a big old club house, which later burned down. We could drive or walk up the windy road to the top of Lincoln Park. In the winter when the pond was frozen over, we used to ice skate in the winter. The girls had their figure skates; boys had their hockey skates. Someone’s parents would usually build us a large bonfire so we could warm up. Of course that lookout was a lover’s lane. Someone spray painted the words “sinners repent” on the road which you could read as you headed back down the road. I never understood what that meant!
Mrs. Graber was our 6th grade teacher and she was big into ping pong.
Ping pong tables lined the lower hallways of the school through the winter months so we could play ping pong when it was too cold to go outside. I was city ping pong champion when I was in the 8th grade. Pogo sticks, hula hoops and roller skating were the “in” things for little girls then. The skates were the kind that we clamped on over our shoes and there was the key to tighten them.
Converse tennis shoes and Keds were the only kind of tennis shoes I can remember.
Back in those days girls had to wear dresses or skirts to school. Even in the winter months. One very severe winter, my father made me wear pants to school and not a skirt. I remember getting in trouble for not wearing a skirt/dress. Can you imagine how cold our little legs must’ve been? I believe that was when I was in the second grade, or maybe the first grade. I remember the classroom that I was in was in the west wing. I remember the heat registers and trying to get warm.
I remember too that I didn’t particularly like math in the second grade. Conveniently I had to go to the bathroom everyday during the math part of our day. Math was always a good subject for me so I don’t know what the deal was.
That cement wall that you used to hit tennis balls against used to be the location where clay was retrieved for class projects. I’ve wondered at what point it was cemented so it must have been before you attended here. The wall was always there from the time I went to first grade in the west wing.
We used to have school carnivals in the gym and the lower hallways.
In PE we had to wear white uniforms that had to be ironed! Ironed!
Everybody took their clothes home on Fridays so they could be washed and ironed then returned on Monday. We had little wire baskets in the locker room where we kept our PE uniforms.
In 7th and 8th grade we used to have dancing in the gym every Friday. Our favorite song was the Salty Dog Rag. We did lots of “round” type dancing.
Everyone’s favorite school lunch was chile and home-made cinnamon rolls and everybody bought lunch that day. I don’t remember “free lunches” or free breakfasts” for any kids in the schools back then. Everybody took care of themselves.
Our school secretary was a lady named Mrs. Allen and she lived in the corner house at the corner of 18th & Mt. Vernon, northeast corner. She was a very sweet lady.
We had no teacher’s aides back then, just our teacher. Fairly large
classrooms too, some years. They taught phonics in first and second grade and how to diagram sentences in the sixth, seventh & eighth! I hated sentence diagramming. Mr. Hamilton was our English teacher. I think of him so often and what all he must’ve taught me without realizing I was learning. I pretty much write for a living now and the many skills all the teachers taught us from 1st grade on have carried me through my business life.
There was a Miss Ogilvie, a 7th grade teacher, who wore a brace on her leg. She wasn’t a fun teacher at all and we found all sorts of ways to get out of her history classes. Usually we found an opaque projector project to work on. Seemed to work for us! Maps. Lots of maps!
Fun to reminisce!! I am such a believer in neighborhood schools for a
number of reasons. We could walk to our friends’ homes after schools. Our parents knew all the other parents. Our friendships have lasted 50 years. Sports and teams were made up of neighborhood kids, lots of pick-up games. Our rivals were the teams from Grant and Lincoln Heights and Adams. We knew these kids from school-year teams and summer-park teams. We walked everywhere or rode our big old bikes. I had to push my bike up every hill. No leg muscles then or now!! I was good as long as I stayed on flat 17th Avenue.
I will send you the music to the Salty Dog Rag. I’ve pulled it off of the internet before! THAT will stir up a lot of memories for many.
I’m tired and going to bed! I’ll come up with some more great Franklin stories!
Dianne Blumhagen LaBissoniere
Franklin Class of 1962
March 7, 2008
Recollections of Dianne Blumhagen LaBissoniere
Franklin Class of 1962

My long time friend, Karen Olsen Ruth, sent me the information about the upcoming reunion for Franklin.
I went to Franklin, kindergarten through 8th grade, back in the mid 50s to early 60s. I graduated from high school in 1966 (am currently 59 years old).
Cliff Hardin was our Principal through most of my years at Franklin then Margaret (Peg) Tully was Principal. I’m not sure, but Miss Tully might’ve been Principal while I was in the 7th & 8th Grade. Possibly just the 8th grade. I have all my old grade school photos and will scan them at some point and forward them to you. I didn’t like Peg Tully! She kicked me off cheerleading for one week because I went to a football game and took a bunch of other girls with me. We were supposed to cheer that day and we all had worn uniforms to school. It rained though so they canceled the girls opportunity to cheer but let the boys play their game. All the girls came to my house, took their cheer uniforms off, and borrowed clothes from me. We
went to the game out of uniform, but she did NOT like that we went to the game. I had to surrender my “F” to her.
I have FABULOUS memories of attending school there. I loved the old school. I loved the old neighborhood. I grew up at 2918 E. 17th Avenue.
Speaking of Avenues vs. Streets. 17th is an Avenue and has been an Avenue for as long as I can remember. I noticed in the historical writings that they referenced 17th as Street. Did it change from one thing to the other at some point?
As kids, we used to grab our tennis racquets and hit tennis balls against the long concrete wall that separated the lower playground from the upper playground. A lot of times on weekends, you’d see a lot of kids there hitting balls.
I will forward this to others who I have remained in touch with through the years.
This is great and I look forward to a Franklin reunion. I have a brother that was one year ahead of me in school (LC Class of 1965) and a brother two years behind (Eisenhower Class of 1968). We all went through all years at Franklin.
Back in those days they didn’t shake up the students each year. If you started with Mrs. Spear as your first grade teacher, you knew who your second grade, third grade, fourth grade, etc. teacher was going to be because they moved the kids through all together, all the way through. It was fabulous and I think it’s why we still have such a special connection to friends. There were probably a few boys that would get separated because they were challenging. They were probably ADD but we didn’t know about those things back then…LOL!
This will be fun!
Dianne Blumhagen LaBissoniere
March 6, 2008
Franklin Class of 1962
Recollections of Barbara Hansen
Franklin Class of 1956

I just finished reading your article on Franklin School. I attended Franklin from 1944 through 1953, kindergarten through eighth. My brother, Colin Hansen attended from 1947 through 1956. Every year the Franklin PTA put on the Franklin Follies and held it in the old auditorium. The community eagerly awaited the Follies. The attendance became so high that it was held two nights so no one was turned away. The follies were a wonderful money raiser for the school through the PTA. In your article, you refer to the Rube Goldberg machine shows. My father, Herman Hansen, was that man. Every year, he spent weeks building a new amazing Rube Goldberg machine for the Follies. They always worked beautifully. My mother, Pat Hansen, was one of the dancing mothers in the Hula one year and the cancan the next. They were both very active in PTA as treasurers and co-presidents.
Thank you for the wonderful memories your article brought to mind. I will share it with my mother who is 93. She will love it.
Barbara (Hansen) Sarp
January 3, 2009
Franklin Class of 1956
Recollections of Ray Mosher
Franklin Class of 1958

I don’t think I remember Mrs. Foster. Bob and I took piano lessens
from Mrs. Ernberg (sp?). She lived on Cook Street about a half block
South of Altamont Blvd. I don’t remember the type of heating [in the auditorium], but I would speculate was hot-water radiators.
Oh, the auditorium had a pitched roof. I don’t recall the type of
ceiling. It may have been open, but I’m not sure.
Ray Mosher
April 14, 2008
Franklin Class of 1958
Recollections of Ray Mosher
Franklin Class of 1958

My brother, Bob Mosher, has mentioned your involvement with Franklin
School history and your need for some photos and information.
Attached is a photo of our Uncle Harry – Harry R. Bates, his mother Nellie Bates, and his father Harry Bates. I suspect, but don’t know for sure, that the photo was taken by Harry R’s older sister Eva. There is no date on the photo, nor a location. Harry R was born in August, 1901. The family moved to Spokane in late 1901 or early 1902. They bought a house at N 617 Hamilton Avenue. This would place them in the district for the old Franklin School, I suspect. Harry Bates (father) worked as a conductor on the Northern Pacific Railway.
The photo leads me to believe they were on their way to or from a
picnic, likely near the Spokane River. It looks like the father is
carrying a picnic basket, but again I am speculating. The building in the background has the appearance of a school, and I wonder if it is the old Franklin grade school.
Harry R would have been seven or eight years old in the last year of
Old Franklin School. I can’t judge Harry Rs age in this photo. It
may be just before the school was sold, or just after and the building in the background may be a different school (maybe Webster?). Harry Rs parents were relatively short, so it’s possible Harry R might have been seven or eight in this photo. Harry R grew to be slightly taller than his father.
I have tried to find photos of the old Franklin school to no avail.
Judging from the shadows, I suspect the attached photo was taken
either in the middle morning or late afternoon. My uncle spoke of
attending old Franklin Grade School and that it was torn down to make
way for the Milwaukee Railroad. He described its location as a few
block east of Division and on the North side of Trent Avenue (then
Front Street). After the Franklin property was sold Harry R attended
Webster Grade School.
I looked up Old Franklin in the Polk City Directory for the early
1900s. The 1900 edition showed the address as Front and Sherman. The 1904 and 1905 editions have the address as “Front NE corner Grant.” These editions also had a map that showed the school between Grant (west side of school) and Sherman (east side of school). The map also showed the Spokane City boundary as 29th Avenue, although there was little, or no, development south of 19 Avenue.
When I am in Spokane in late May and early June I will look for photos of Old Franklin. Have you by chance found any?
I attended the “new” Franklin from 1949 through 1957. I have a number
of class photos that I will digitize and send to you in a few weeks.
I can send you digital files, prints, or both. What is your
preference? If prints, what size is most convenient? I can provide
5x7s or 8x10s.
I also perused the history of the school on your website and it is
fascinating. I may have missed it, but I didn’t see a mention of the
auditorium on the East side of the school next to Mr. Vernon. This is now a parking lot. The auditorium was torn down after the West
addition was built with it’s gymnasium, but I’m not sure exactly
when. Prior to this the auditorium on the East end of the building
was the center of activity for the larger events. My recollection is this building existed before I started school in 1949. By its
structure and awkward access from the main school, it must have been
added after the main building was constructed. I think the reference in the history to this auditorium describes it as being on the West
side of the main school building, but it was on the East side. The
auditorium had a stage on the North end complete with curtains that
could be drawn closed. The outside double-doors fronted to 17th Avenue.
I also attended the kindergarten in 1948 that you reference in the
Ray Mosher
Franklin Class of 1958
April 12, 2008
MosherVisit3_edited (WinCE).jpg
Bob and Ray Mosher sitting where Principal Wildley’s and his desk once resided. With smiles, Bob and Ray have the last laugh, pointing to a place in the room. “This is the spot, right here” where kids got paddled by Mr. Wildley.”
Recollections of Robert Mosher
Franklin Class of 1954

I can tell you what I remember and I’m sure Ray will tell you what he remembers.
The auditorium that Ray refers to had a student entrance near what was then the east end of the fourth grade and the cafeteria that was built out of the fourth grade coat rooms. The entrance proceed through the east wall of the main building, through an enclosed ramp into the auditorium. One emerged just off the stage, you made a hard right turn, went down several steps, and you were in the main auditorium. It was heated by some steam radiators along the east wall (and probably along the west wall). Before we had the current gym, some indoor gym activities took place in the auditorium, such as coed dancing and coed volleyball. This was done especially during the winter months when it was not practical to hold PE classes outside. As I recall, tumbling classes were held in the basement of the main building for several years. There must have been some sort of screen over the inside of the auditorium windows, otherwise our volleyball games and other rough stuff would
have broken out all the windows. The stage could be accessed (from the main auditorium) on either side via a short series of steps leading through a door.
The stage was a raised stage and had maroon-colored curtains that could be drawn. There was an old upright piano on the east side of the auditorium up front near the stage. The piano was used to accompany class choral events and talent shows and such. It was a busy place in our day, until the west addition was complete. We sat on wooden benches supplemented with some folding chairs. The Christmas program was held in the auditorium, and each class had a part in the program. There were also talent shows held throughout the year and a PTA show put on for the students. The auditorium really saw a lot of use. It had hardwood floors, I think, and could hold the entire student body in a pinch.
I don’t remember a Mrs. Foster giving piano lessons. Ray and I both took piano lessons from a Mrs. Florence Ehrenberg. She started with me by giving lessons at the school when I was in the second grade, and then we moved on and started taking lessons out of her home on Cook Street. It was a grand old two story home on Cook just south of Altamont Blvd.
I do remember a Miss Davis, a district teacher, who taught voice at Franklin and one or two other grade schools. Classes were held in individual classrooms.
Mr. Ray Harris taught band. We had a combined Franklin/Grant band that practiced in the auditorium. Mr. Harris headed up the grade school band program for the entire city. He worked the south side schools, and a Mr. Joseph Elsom worked the north side schools. On Saturday mornings, all grade school band members from all over the city met and Lewis and Clark high school for an overall practice. There were three different bands, each based on the skills of the individual (1st band for more skilled kids, 2nd band, and 3rd (beginning) band). We had a spring concert each year for the city bands. During the summers, we had a city summer band that gave concerts at various parks from early June through late July. I played the tuba and brother Ray played the trumpet. This band thing was a big deal to us.
The double doors leading out the south end of the auditorium, as I recall, had windows in the upper half. The doors open onto a small porch. There was a large spruce or fir tree just outside this entrance, and I believe it is still there.
Before the west addition was built, the mid-level playground ran all the way south to 17th Avenue. There was a raised area next to the west wall of the school with racks for bicycles. On the upper playground, just north of the auditorium there was a combined basketball court/baseball diamond, a volleyball court, and a wooden structure similar to a racketball structure (but much smaller). The first portables were erected on the upper playground around 1949 or 1950, I think. The old kindergarten building that Ray attended was a private home when I was in kindergarten (1945-1946). One of my classmates, Bo Brian, lived in that house. My kindergarten class was held in converted coat rooms of the first and third grades (at the west end of the main floor).
We all either walked to school or rode our bikes. In the winter or rainy weather, when bikes weren’t practical, we either took the city bus, or parents would take us. There were not school buses to transport us.
I have probably bent your ears enough for the moment. If you have more questions, please ask. I enjoy recalling those early days.
Bob Mosher
April 14, 2008
Franklin Class of 1954
P.S. I have somehow lost my fifth grade class picture (May, 1951). Mr. Kingsland was the teacher. If you hear of someone with that picture, I would sure like to get a copy, CD, or otherwise. Thanks.
Bob Mosher’s Teachers
The following people were teachers and staff at Franklin School for Bob Mosher.
1945-1946 Kindergarten: Ms Gladys Hoagland. A kindly lady, whose grandson, Bob Hoagland, attended this 100th year celebration. He graduated from Grant School in 1951. Kindergarten classes were held in converted cloak rooms at the west end of the first floor in the original building.
1946-1947 First Grade: Miss Gertrude Laurance. Another kindly lady. She taught us, among other things, reading. We learned reading from the infamous Dick and Jane series of books.
1947-1948 Second Grade: Miss Christiann Reierson. She could be quite stern with us. The second grade is where we were introduced to the steel and wooden desks with ink wells and fold up seats. No ink or pens were provided, fortunately.
1948-1949 Third Grade: Mrs. Elsie Coon. This was Mrs. Coon’s first year at Franklin. Mrs. Coon was a good teacher. We had thought that our teacher would be Miss Alice Winslow, but she retired in June of 1948. She was very nice, and her students really liked her.
1949-1950 Fourth Grade: Miss Agnes Blomberg. I got in trouble with her for not getting my arithmetic assignments turned in on time. Not something that I would recommend. Miss Blom