Drive South

October 18, 2006

“We’re always looking for true north,
with our heads in the clouds, just a little off course.

I left the motor running, now if you’re feeling down and out

Come on baby drive south, with the one you love.”

John Hiatt

Thank heavens it’s fall break. Neither of us have been out of this corner of the state since early last spring. Although Willi had a summer break, it didn’t amount to much since we were bound to my new job. So, albeit short and hopefully sweet, we are heading south for a couple of days. The drive through southern Indiana should be magnificent this time of year. And best of all, we will be able to catch a singer songwriter we have grown quite fond of. Sounds pretty good all around to me.

For those of you who played my guessing game in the last post, I am the little girl in banana curls and crooked bangs, right above the word “Gary”. Willi and Ginnie guessed right. Willi had a definite advantage.

I was almost seven in this picture. Some things remain the same…the chubby cheeks, for example. I remember my mom setting my hair in pink sponge rollers to make those curls. We had to be very careful taking them out, or man, did it hurt.

If you are interested, I found a few nuggets this week while sifting through the infamous boxes. If you click on the picture, they should open in a new window, just a little larger.

This was my mom’s yearbook from the year she graduated, 1937. Although she was born and raised in Decatur, Illinois, she ended up in Gary for her last year of high school. I’m not quite sure why, since her family stayed in Decatur. Another mystery!

The entire yearbook is filled with autographs and signatures next to pictures. This seems pretty amazing since she was only there one year. I graduated in 1973 and don’t remember there being very much of that, although I was with the same group of kids for almost nine years. Things change.

William A. Wirt was the Superintendent at that time. I have heard quite a bit about his Work- Study-Play model of education. According to Wikipedia,

“He initiated teacher hiring standards, designed school buildings, lengthened the school day, and organized the schools according to his ideals. Outside of Gary, over 200 cities in forty-one states experimented with the platoon system, and in 1925, the National Association for the Study of the Platoon or Work-Study-Play School Organization formed to publicize the advantages of the platoon system. William Wirt not only received national recognition, but also gained worldwide fame from England to Japan.”

Pretty interesting stuff when you consider how Gary schools are doing today.

Here is an interesting note. If any of you remember Tom Harmon of sports fame both as a player and announcer, he is the first boy pictured above. I remember my mom telling me she went to high school with him. Lo and behold, there he is.

There is my mom in the second row, first picture. She was a pretty girl I think. I miss her a bit tonight. Sharing is nice.

Well, say goodbye to the dog and the kids. Pack up the bags and jump in the car. Come on baby, let’s drive south!

See you in a few…

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10 Responses to “Drive South”

  1. debi Says:

    Thank you for sharing your Mom with us. Yes,she is pretty. I am enjoying learning about your family. Have a wonderful time and we will be waiting for your return.

  2. Cazzie!!! Says:

    Gorgeous!! Love the fact you are sharing this here… I have my year books and intend to keep them and look back at them.
    I have my nursing Graduation books and pics too and I cherish them also..so I hope my kids will be wrapt too later in life.

  3. Freakazojd Says:

    This has got to be one of the coolest posts I’ve read tonight. I always find family histories like that – yearbooks, but even just a simple snapshot, or little story (snapshort?) – so interesting. Thanks for sharing yours!

  4. mjd Says:

    Have a wonderful trip. I hope that the weather is fabulous and that traffic is nonexistent.

    The pictures of the yearbooks are fun. Looking at the pictures of yesteryear provides a wonderful connection to the past. Your mom was a pretty girl. I should have known that the sweet banana curl girl was you. Do you think that there is a maybe just hint of devilment in that smile?

  5. willi Says:

    MJD: Devilment in that smile! You bet.

    Great post. My gears our spinning about why your mom would move to Gary by herself.

  6. Jay Says:

    Really cool post. Lots of interesting stuff.

  7. Swampwitch Says:

    The yearbook pictures are fun. Interesting how many of those pic could have come from any of yearbook of those days.
    The red dress you have on ! I had that VERY same dress and am off to my old photo albums to find it.

  8. Tod Says:

    Thanks for sharing your photo’s. Very interesting! Have a good trip.

  9. Anonymous Says:

    Blast from the past! How cool is that? You Mom sure was beautiful, and well liked to from all of the signatures.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Marnie (blogger still sucks)

  10. graymama Says:

    I still have my pink sponge rollers, and I also still have chubby cheeks, although you were/are much cuter than me.

    I love seeing items from the boxes. Your mom was beautiful inside and out đŸ™‚

    Now what singer did you check out?!


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