Reflections: April, 1945: School in Session

By Evelyn Long - Contributing Columnist

With no public school classes being held this month, I singled out an edition of the Cardngton School newspaper, “The Searchlight”, dated April 23, 1945, seventy-five years ago and want to share the activities of that time.

Perhaps some of the names will be familiar, maybe a friend or relative.

There was so much news that the editor, Doris Mathias, apologized and said the remaining news would be in the May edition of the paper.

The baseball teams’s schedule revealed only six games played, four in March and two in April.

May Day was being planned with five qualifications listed for nomination as May Queen, the first being the candidates must be junior girls.

The queen in 1945 was Betty Jane Fryman. Attendants were Phyllis Koon, Kathryn Nybladh, Julie Reed, Barbara Curts, Maxine Boger, Dorotha Stephens, Mildred Furstenberger, Marjorie George, Doris Mathias, and Geneva Phillips.

There were 30 seventh- and eighth-grade May Pole dancers named. The school’s FFA chapter members won awards in the Parliamentary Procedure contest with Neil Patzer winning the Public Speaking contest.

In the lower grades, pupils in the fifth grade who had the most points in spelling were Joanne Fricke, Eugene Philbrook, Melvin Maceyko and Franklin Himler.

The fifth grade class had sold over $200 in Defense Stamps and Bonds. Sixth graders Carolyn Patterson, Barbara Sparks and Marilyn Hert had perfect attendance up to this point. Perfect attendance had been attained by eighth graders Howard Gattshall, Juanita Miller, Omar Deel and Jack Brown.

A poignant editorial was written in tribute to President Franklin D. Roosevelt who had passed away just 11 days before this paper’s publication.

One of the more interesting stories was the scrap drive conducted by the junior class. Among the items brought to the drive were a cigar, a bottle of Pepto-Bismol, light bulbs, curtain rods, a broken butter dish and a cup less the handle. All of the items netted $37!!!!

Scrap drives were common during World War II which brings me to my final point. Just two weeks after the publication of this paper was VE Day, which was the end of the war in Germany.

I, being a seventh grader, along with my friend, Joan Slack, and all of the students from grade seven up, skipped school that day in celebration. I still remember the elation. We had brought our dimes to school for several years for savings bonds and now this part of the war was over.

Currently we have a different “war,” with the COVID-19 virus but just like World War II, this will also end and we will once again see our schools open with students participating in all activities.

Looking back

April 1940: During the past four years, the Works Progress Administration (WPA) had built 62 miles of roads in Morrow County, most of this total was comprised of county and township roads. The WPA also built seven bridges across the county.

April, 1950: Cardington Elementary students raised $71 for the Easter Seals campaign.

By Evelyn Long

Contributing Columnist

Reach us at [email protected]

Reach us at [email protected]