Thursday, July 13, 2017

Finding Grandfather's High School Graduation

Masthead of The Westerly Sun newspaper courtesy of the Westerly Public Library, 11 July 2017
Cost of the paper on this day was one cent.

Finding Grandfather's High School Graduation:
A One Cent Solution

For many months now, I have been trying to find out where and when my maternal grandfather went to high school. Since, the area in which the family lived encompassed both the states of Rhode Island and Connecticut, I knew it might be a challenge and I was going to need the help of my genealogy friends who live and work in the Westerly (RI) and Pawcatuck (CT) geographic location. In the middle of this investigation, a family historian found my public tree and a mention of her grandfather's name on one of my family photographs! 

The newspaper articles for my grandparent's wedding hinted that my grandfather went to a public high school. His father went to private high schools, one in Rhode Island and one in Connecticut, so I could not be sure that my great grandfather didn't want for his only living son, the same type of experience and that we might never find out.

My grandmother told me that she met her husband in Peters Brothers Ice Cream Shop in Westerly, Rhode Island where she worked after high school. He waited until she was off and walked her home. I didn't think of it at the time but it meant that they both lived in Rhode Island in 1912.
Grandfather Evans was seven years old than his wife. That's a lot of time at the age that they were. Grandmother told me that he had been working for his father for a number of years. They married in 1914, so my grandmother was two years out of high school. She worked, standing on her feet all of that time, "wearing ill fitting shoes".  Her feet always hurt and she lived to be 98 years old. 

Cousin and genealogist, Barbara Fallon, loves a mystery and since she is retired and volunteers in the Westerly Public Library, took on the mystery of my grandfather's high school and found his name in the Pawcatuck High School graduating class of 1905.  The Westerly Sun published the high school graduation article in the Sunday evening edition of June 11, 1905. She took screen shots of the article with her iPad and sent it to me in sections and asked the library to print out and save in .JPG format from the microfilm so I could see all that was mentioned.  I gained a lot of information from this one source and would not have found out any of this if it wasn't for her expert help. (More to follow...)

1 comment:

  1. Hi Midge! I've nominated you for the Blogger Recognition Award: From one highly caffeinated genealogist to another - we've got the POWA!