Saturday, March 21, 2009

Mystery Photo: Faculty Shows

Four teachers dressed as showgirls; Blanche Mueller may be on the right

We’ve never made the best use of our slide collection. It has always been hard to access, and the slides were never completely cross referenced into our subject files. We also worried, from time to time, that we were losing the images. Most of our slides were in potentially-acidic cardboard mounts, and even under ideal conditions older slide film begins to discolor after only a couple of decades.

So recently our archivist, Muriel Olsson, went through all of our slides (1000+!) and selected those worth preserving. I then scanned them and sent the files to a photo finishing company to have prints made. Our photograph curator Beth Smith has now added these to our meticulously-catalogued photograph collection.

We found lots of wonderful pictures while we were squinting through the slide viewer, including the slide of an old photograph of the Protection Engine Company that we used in the March 19th post.

But none were quite as fabulous as the 31 slides showing men and women in fancy dress. Judy Wemer Chamberlain was able to identify some of the teachers and remembered seeing these faculty shows when she was in school. The slides are not dated, but we think they might have been taken in the late ’50s or early ‘60s. We don’t know how many different shows are represented in the collection, or the span of years. We’re looking for identifications, but we’d also like to hear more about these shows. Does anyone know the dates or what the shows were called? What were they like? How many of the faculty participated? We’d love to know!

Val Mattriski in the center of five "cleaning ladies"

Three "beatniks", possibly including Joan Rand or Mary Kristiansen

Could this beat chick possibly be history teacher Jeanie Pingrey?

DiggIt!Add to del.icio.usAdd to Technorati Faves


  1. Great shots. I think that is Jeanie Pingrey. The mouth is a dead giveaway. All those years of walking kept her in great shape. Was Blanche Mueller's maiden name Ingram? That was my first grade teacher's name and she was blond and short. Keep up the great work.
    Bill Ewen

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. yes, I remember that one -- but it's "Jennie" Pingrey --

    3. That "out of character" costume hadn't fazed me at the time, knowing that it was for "a show." But when Miss Pingrey had expressed interest in watching "The Alvin Show?"... thought it was over -- but it had been because Ross Bagdasarian AKA Dave Seville of "The Chipmunks" fame had once been one of her students --

  2. Bill Eggering e-mailed us back on March 27th to say that, in the middle photo, the woman in the Vassar sweatshirt is Marjorie Murphy, his second grade teacher, and next to her is Mae Lynch, his sixth grade teacher. He also thinks that the blonde on the right in the first photograph is Blanche Mueller.

    And Bill, I promise to get hold of Evelyn Drewes and ask her about Blanche's maiden name!

  3. Bill Ewen is right! Evelyn Drewes says that Blanche Mueller's last name was Inghram.

  4. Carol Russo says that the beatnick on the left is Eunice Lloyd. Thanks, Carol!

  5. Would you believe that these are the photographs that get the largest number of hits on our Flickr photostream?

  6. Thanks to Bill Eggering, Robert Buzak, Arden Mack, and Susan Magner, we have complete identifications for the cleaning ladies! From left to right: Marjorie Murphy (2nd Grade), Mae Lynch (6th Grade), Val Mattriski (Commerical), Bea Sledge (Music), and Charlotte Wells (5th Grade).

  7. That sure looks like Mrs. Kristiansen to me!

  8. In the first picture, far right may be Eva Sureau.