Sunday, November 6, 2011

Boarding School - a tradition? 52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History Week 45

Week 45. High School. Describe your middle and/or high school. Was it a large or small student body? Is the school still in existence today? How has it changed since you went there? Amy Coffin of the We Tree blog ( has yet another successful series on her hands: 52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History 

I went to a small private school for high school. The average class size was about 50 girls and was fairly evenly split between day students and boarders. I was a boarding student as were all the cousins that also attended the school.

It seems to have been a family tradition in my mother's family that boarding schools were the schools of choice. In the 1900 census, my mother's oldest sister appears in Michigan living at St Joseph's Academy in Adrian. Her family lived in Chicago and she was 6 years old. Her uncle was the school's chaplain which may explain why she was there at such a young age. The other girls in the family, along with their cousins, attended the same school until my mother made a break with tradition in 1928. My mother attended a more local version on the same school. At least it was in Illinois! Mom went to the school from 6th grade forward.  By the time my cousins and I went to high school, the school was a 4 year high school only.

Sadly, the school closed in the 1972. In 2005 an all school reunion was held in the Chicago area. I was lucky enough to attend the reunion and in addition to seeing former teachers and classmates even saw some of my mother's classmates. (class of 1935) They not only knew her, they remembered her.

After the reunion, my class had a class party on our own. It is amazing that we seem to pick up where we left off. We may lose touch with each other, but we are still close.