Monday, February 25, 2013

Following up on Eleanor's education...

a bit late on this follow up because I wasn't feeling well...

     My last blog post ended with my search for St. Aloysius High School in Brooklyn, NY.  My maternal grandmother, Eleanor Davis supposedly attended this high school according to her elementary school record from St. Leonard's and her autograph book.  Where is/was St. Aloysius?  I couldn't find it anywhere.  I checked the internet...  no luck.
     I finally called the diocese and was told that there was a high school in Brooklyn called St. Aloysius.  It had been closed down and the records stored at the diocese.  I would have called the diocese much sooner and I had thought of it but I wanted to find the information on my own.
     The very nice gentleman in the archives department told me that they have school records for St. Aloysius dating from 1931 to 1964 and that this school was located on Stanhope Street.
     I'm looking forward to this record.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Eleanor's Education

     My maternal grandmother Eleanor attended St. Leonard's catholic elementary school in the Bushwick section of Brooklyn, NY in the early 1930's.
     This church/school closed in the 1970's and was eventually demolished in 2001.  The school records were sent to the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn and the sacramental church records were sent to St. Joseph Patron Saint of the Universal Church. (I couldn't find a photo of this church before the boarded/broken windows)


      I finally ordered MaMa's school record which I was happy to receive so quickly.  Well, actually I would have been thrilled to receive any kind of school record no matter how long it took.  This record shows that MaMa started St. Leonard's in November of 1930 and had attended P.S. 145 prior to St. Leonard's.  It does not show how long she was a student at P.S. 145 but the 1925 NY State Census has her living in Poughkeepsie with her parents and attending school there so I'm guessing she wasn't at P.S. 145 since first grade.  I think she was already in Brooklyn by 1927 because that's when her 3 year old sister died at a hospital in Brooklyn.  I think MaMa was living with her grandmother soon after her sister's death but that's just a guess.  I called P.S. 145 to inquire about school records from 1930 and was told that "all the old records were lost in the flood."  So, I'm not able to see the record from P.S. 145 but at least I found out that she attended this school.  The school record from St. Leonard's has St. Aloysius listed as the high school my grandmother was going to attend.  MaMa had written the name St. Aloysius in her autograph book as well.
    It seems I have failed in my school research.  I get a big 'F' for the high school records.  The 1940 U.S. Federal Census shows that my grandmother had four years of high school but that's only as accurate as the person supplying the information.  My grandmother's autograph book and her elementary school record both has St. Aloysius listed as her high school.  Mama lived in the Bushwick section of Brooklyn within walking distance to P.S. 145 and St. Leonard's elementary schools but where was S. Aloysius?  I have checked the internet and cannot find a St. Aloysius high school in Brooklyn.  There is a St. Aloysius in Ridgewood which is the borderline of Brooklyn and Queens.  I called and found out that it is an elementary school.  The woman I spoke to did not know of a St. Aloysius High School in Brooklyn.
     I will not accept failure.  I'll take an early spring break from St. Aloysius then return refreshed and relaxed and ready to resume research.
 P.S. 145 as it looked when MaMa attended

Brooklyn, NY - Public School 145P.S. 145 as it looked when MaMa attended
P.S. 145 currently

* * While looking for pictures on the internet for St. Leonard's and P.S. 145, I stumbled upon a website for catholic schools that had a listing of retired schools.  I saw St. Aloysius Parish High School for Girls on that list; actually under a list for the schools that they would like more information about.  Well, at least I think I found MaMa's school.  I tried calling the diocese but the archives department was unavailable. I'll try again tomorrow or in a few days.