Back row left to right: (not identified), Larry Bechtol, Larry Miller, Robert Flory, Don Snyder, Nancy Hoff (Hofacker), Jeanette Burdge, Carolyn Burris (Petering), Carol Shepard (Ritz), Miss Beatrice Brown- teacher.
Middle row left to right: Donnie Perrin, Sharon Burris (Hittle), Roney Dean Miller, Glen Eley, Allen Rogers, (not identified), Doug Snyder, (not identified), Bonnie Flory (Brown),
Front row left to right: Betsy Clay (Hess), Karen Moyer (Riser), (not identified), Judy Burris (Burns), Carl Eley, John Weisenbarger, Mary Davidson (Foland), Phyllis Eley (Allen), Eugene Flory.
This was the last year that Gordon School was in operation. The coal shed was empty. No girls were running down the sidewalk to the girl’s toilet and no boys were peeing in the trough in the boy’s toilet on the opposite side of the school.
The old oak tree, were generations of kids sat in the shade and ate lunches as simple as little green onions laid like sardines on greasy bread their mothers had used to mop out the skillet after a breakfast of fresh side meat, and eggs straight out of the chicken house.Nobody complained; it was all good eating.
What little coal there was left in the shed, along with a stack of corn cobs and pieces of wood used for kindling was still there, but there was no longer any need to soak a couple of corn cobs in coal oil again. Nobody would ever be starting fires in the old furnace-like stove. School was out for good.
Kids yelled like Indians and ran home to show their report card to smiling parents. They were going to one of the consolidated schools next year and they could choose to go to one of three local schools: Franklin Monroe, Verona or Arcanum. After high school, who knew what their future would be like.
Our bus took us to Arcanum and as we passed the now-empty Gordon School only memories played Fox and Goose. Initials carved in the coal shed: John loves Mary R., will love her as long as the coal shed remains.
We were growing up fast and favorite radio hosts like Edward R. Murrow’s broadcast, “This is London Calling,” and Lowell Thomas, from Darke County were no longer where most people tuned radios. Ruth Lyons 50/50 Club was suddenly a must watch on that box with a screen where you could see her selling the products and services she was famous for.
The nation was finished with World War II and Victory was good. General Motors was making new cars and soldiers who fought on Iwo Jima had jobs and were buying new cars and homes and keeping midwives and hospitals busy birthing babies.
I don’t think any of the kids in the 1947 photograph went off to war because the “War” was over, over there and people didn’t even know a place like Korea existed in 1947.