Mt. Rainier and Lenticular Clouds - Dec. 2008 copyright: JMM

October 2, 2012

Mystery Solved....Kind Of

You know it's true what they say that the quest is always more fun then finding what you are looking for.  On the other hand it's nice to have some of life's little mysteries resolved.  This happened recently, kind of.

When I was in kindergarten, we had split sessions.  For the first half of the year, I was on afternoons and the second half of the year, on mornings.  This is my kindergarten class picture.  I know every name by heart, including the kids who moved away after the first year or so together.  My memories of kindergarten itself have faded....just a few fragmented images here and there remain.  Extra points if you can find me.  ;-)

I knew there were kids in my grade who were on the opposite schedule as me, but I never saw their class picture.  I didn't think about it back in school....I mean why would I ever ask anyone to see their class photos?  Flash forward to the present and now that my classmates want to see them, no one can find them anymore.  Most people's parents retained the class photos and after moves and deaths and divorces, many have been lost forever.  I was lucky that my mom kept them and let me have them when I got out of college. 

I was on Facebook and stumbled upon the corresponding photo to mine, completely by accident.  It solved some of my questions on who all else started from K and graduated with me in 1982.  It also surprised me because some of my fragmented memories of K are of the girl 4th from the left in the 4th row in the blue jumper, Beth.  I could have sworn she was in my session, even though her pic wasn't included in my class pic.  All these years I assumed she moved to Sandwich during the year and after the photos were taken.  Instead of a group shot, our K class photos are a compilation of our individual school photos, which were always taken in early September, when students were still transferring in and out.  According to this photo, it's clear our paths never crossed during K, despite my memories.  The other thing is that while some of the kids are easily identifiable to me, some of them are not.  I wonder who they are?  The photo on Facebook wasn't tagged with the names.  And who is the sad looking little girl in the bottom left corner?  Do I know her?  I can't tell.  Could she be a girl that I thought I met in 2nd grade?  The boy on the far right middle row looks familiar....I thought it was my friend Doug but he insists it's not him.

In 2nd grade, the town was experiencing significant growth, so halfway through the year, a bunch of us were removed from our original classrooms and placed into an expansion class.  A temporary classroom had been built in a very noisy hallway right smack in between the elementary and high school parts, and my new teacher (back row far left; our teacher's aide, on the right, was awesome) was unable to retain control of our room and she was also cruel.  Because it was so disruptive to be ripped from my original class and placed into utter chaos with students I didn't really know, I have way more clear memories of January to June 1972, than I do of September to December 1971. As a side note, my parents always pinpointed my plummeting math ability to when I was changed to this class, due to the disruptions.  BTW, that's not my underwear showing, it's the white slip under my dress.  

I've always wondered about the photo from my original class.  I thought that it would help me to recover memories of the first half of that year if I could just see the picture.  Unbelievably, the person who posted the picture of the K class, also posted a picture of my original 2nd grade classroom!!!  Again, I can ID some of the kids, but where is Traci? I clearly remember being in trouble w/ my teacher....something about having done an assignment wrong....and I at my desk, very upset and trying hard not to cry.  She sat in front of me, and I remember her turning around and doing what she could to cheer me up.  Yet she's not in this photo, and she wasn't moved into the expansion class with me either.  She was, however, in my 1st grade class pic....could I be remembering something from 1st grade?  And I remember there was a girl in 2nd grade named Wanda Brannikins and she had almost white blonde hair, and there is no such girl in this picture, but could possibly be the blonde girl 3rd from the left 2nd row.  I remember the boy on the far left 2nd row but I don't remember his name.  And Beth is in this classroom, so are my alleged K memories of her really from 2nd?  I also seem to remember that my first 2nd grade teacher didn't like me; I still have my report cards from back then and she never had anything nice to say about me.  I've always wondered if that's why I got transferred.  

The Class of 82 started in the Fall of 1969 with only 61 students.  When we graduated, it had swelled to around 150.  There are approximately 32 of us, that I can positively identify, that made it all the way through together in the same school (2 of the original 61 studets were held back a year).  My bff since K, Sheila (2nd from left front row, dark hair) moved to Orleans during 3rd grade and was also class of 82, but at Nauset High.  A few of them made it as far junior high before moving or possibly transferring to Upper Cape Regional Technical School.

So many moved away and I wonder what happened to them, if they remember their time in Sandwich at all and if they look at these class photos and remember any of us?


  1. Anonymous8:48 AM

    I'm amazed you remember as much as you do. What a crazy thing to do to young kids, to break up the class like that. That's awful! I love to look back at the old pictures, so much fun!

  2. Amazing all the memories those old school pictures can bring to our minds! Fun stuff! And, are you sure that wasn't your underwear? hahaha

  3. Anonymous11:42 AM

    Well done on remembering so many! I (not very often it has to be said) look at my old school photos, and the more years that go by, the more faces are met with '....I THINK that's so-and-so'

  4. Top photo - you are top row, far right. Yes?

    We didn't get class photos, only individual ones.

  5. The only reason I have any memories of these days is due to these pictures and my trying to write down my elementary school memories sometime in the mid-80s b/c I knew someday I'd forget them. Plus diaries I've kept since 7th grade.

    Val - you correctly ID'd me! :D

  6. I wish I had a memory like yours, I can barely remember my own name let alone the names of kids I went to school with xD.

  7. JoJo you are amazing. I can't believe you remember so much about grade school, and the kids in you classes. I barely remember people I went to high school with.
    Everyday Inspired

  8. I saved all of my class pictures and my report cards too. I too can remember everyone in my class. In kindergarten we had split classes too and I was in the afternoon class. I remember everything about what we did. Like making applesauce and putting our heads on our desks for a nap. One day we even did our handprint in clay for our parents. The teacher had to press on my hand to make a deeper impression. I still have it although it is crumbling, LOL, like me. The one thing I remember so clearly was during prayers...yes, in those days we had a moment of prayer...I started talking to a classmate of mine and the teacher got up and slapped me across the face! I was in shock, to say the least because my parents never hit us. Also, in those days we had to have vaccinations in order to attend school. When I got my BIG vaccination shot, the doctor said to me 'Oh, you're a girl, we'll hide it' and he gave it to me on the underside of my arm and the mark it left was very faint. When I went to school the teacher couldn't find it and I left school that day with a note pinned to my dress for my Mom to verify I had gotten one. My Mom had to circle the mark with a pen! LOL, thanks for bringing up great memories, JoJo!