Unknown school photo, circa 1900

I'm posting this photo in the hopes that someone can identify it. It is a school photo, probably from around 1900, most likely from Springfield. What is unusual about this photo is that most of the students are identified on the back -- so maybe you will find your ancestor there. If you do, I can send you a large electronic copy which you can have printed out at a photo printer like CVS or Walgreens.

Unfortunately the backing board of the photo is ripped, and the missing piece presumably identified the school and year, however it is labeled as Grade 7. Many of the names are Irish, which should provide a clue as to the school's neighborhood. The names are written in small cursive letters, so I may misspell some of the names.

Here are the student names:

Back Row
Edward Kieley
Livingston Gardiner
Frank Berthiaume
Arnold Whitehome
Ernest Haynes
Edna Lewis
Unknown (initials R.G.)
Helen Murray
Blanche Wood
Catherine Kelleher

Middle Row
Viola LaRiviere
Irene Harmon
Marion Rich
Florence Curtis
Unknown (initials R.T.)
Unknown (initials R.M.)
Unknown (initials L.H.)
Elsie Rich
Grace Smith
Ruth Rivers
Marion Lawton
Unknown (initials M.R.)

Front Row
Elmer Beaudry
Raymond Moore
William Walsh
William Riley
Unknown (initials W.G.)
Edward Chapin
Willard Fowler
Russell Grout

You can click on the photo to make it fill your screen, and click on the expansion button to see it even larger to see more detail.


After I saw your posting in the Masslive Nostalgia forum, I did a search in Ancestry.com, some of these names came up in the 1910 Census or WW1 Draft Registrations... the birth years are not exact, just based on their age from the 1910 Census

Elmer Beaudry, born 1893, living in Quincy St

Edward Kieley, born 1889, Wellington St

Livingston Gardner, born 1891, Hancock St

Ernest Haynes, born 1892, Green St

Edward Chapin, born 1894, State St

I hope this helps.

Barrows school

Thanks, that helps quite a bit. Those streets are pretty close to where the Barrows school was. Someone else in the Nostalgia forum posted that they thought it could be Barrows school too. Barrows had rounded windows as the photo suggests.

I'll keep digging. If Google indexes my list, maybe someone searching for their ancestors will stumble upon it.

Barrows School

Looked at an old Real Photo postcard from 1907. I had and can see that the picture of the children you have was taken at Barrows School. The key is the decoration around the windows in the picture.

Thanks for the ID!

Super! Thanks for the help.

Do you know when Barrows was torn down?

unknown school photo

I attended Sacred Heart School in Springfield, and can tell you that picture looks like it was taken there. They allowed intergrated students there, for one, second, the structure in the background looks like the old entrance near Everett Street. By the way the students were dressed, it seems that the students were made to dress formally. Sacred Heart only became a uniformed parochial school in the early '80's.

i think this is brooking

i think this is brooking school

That is NOT Sacred Heart

That is NOT Sacred Heart School. Especially not the Everett St side entrance. I lived right next door to the convent on Everett. I attended there from 1959 to 1968 and wore a uniform daily for all those years. My sisters continued through HS, and they wore uniforms too. Also, it was labeled "grade seven" The grades were not mingled with boys and girls until the fifies. The boys and girls even had their own entrance.

Stood Corrected!

Dear dtf07,

My sincerest apologies to my mis-information!! I seemed to have struck a nerve. Obviously you are far more knowledgible about Sacred Heart School. I merely looked upon the photo and drew to an hastly and incorrect conclusion. I only wish you could have been a little less stern in your response. Please, once again accept my deepest apologies on this matter. Thank you very much for a lesson well taken about jumping to incorrect conclusions.

Sacred Heart "error"

Dtf07 undoubtedly meant no offense, Art, with his brash response to your post. I think we historian types tend to get overly zealous when it comes to accuracy. You certainly did not come across to me as jumping to incorrect conclusions. You were attempting to help solve a mystery and that's one of the things we try to do in this wonderful website.

Barrows School

I went to Barrows School in the 1930's. Before that, I went to Strickland School, on the corner of Union and Oak. The photo does not look like Barrows School to me. I could be wrong. But the windows do not look like what I recall. Barrows School was more "ornate". The iron fence was there in the 40's and in the 50's. We used to sit on that fence to watch local kids play baseball in Barrows Schoolyard.

Barrows School photo

Barrows School did not go to the 7th grade. it went only to Grade 6. After that, you went to Junior High School (Buckingham). Junior High Schools were 7, 8 and 9th grade. High Schools were Grades 10, 11, and 12.

so that is not Barrows School. It must be a Junior High School

Water Fountain Belmont and Sumner

Jim Boone

Between 1900 and 1910 a Humane Society distributed waterying fountains to every state in the country. Many of these came from Vinalhaven maine, as did the Holyoke Dam It is recorded that one came to Springfield. I have an old postcard of the intersection of Belmont and Sumner at the X and can just see a similar watering fountain in the middle of the road. I am trying to determine if this is one of them. Does anyone else have other pictures of this intersection?

Also, has anyone ever seen this fountain in storage anywhere in the City

Thanks Jim Boone

Water Fountain Belmont and Sumner

Jim Boone


This is a link to many other fountains of the type we are looking for. Is the sumner Ave one one of these?


I think I have seen images of a double-lion fountain like this in the downtown area. Am I imagining things, or does someone else recall this?

Water Fountain Belmont and Sumner

There is a wonderful fountain at Court Square but I think it was just for people, dont remember if there was a place for dogs to drink down near the ground. there is also a people fountain with dog drinking places at Mason Square put there by the Temperance League in 1899. It is made out of granite too. Thanks for reminding me of this one. Jim Boone

Lion fountain

Yes, I know about the downtown lion fountain that was restored a couple of years ago. I just seem to recall seeing another somewhere, in some old images somewhere, that resembles the fountains on that site.

I saw something else that was kind of interesting. On White St., entering East Longmeadow, there is a largish cubic stone, about 2.5 to 3 feet in height, with the letters "S" on one corner and "L" on the other corner. It is to mark the city boundary. Given that East Longmeadow broke away from Longmeadow in 1894, it must date prior to that. It is overgrown so it isn't that obvious, but it's neat anyway.

Springfield Mass

My great great grandfather, Jonathon McMasters died when he was about 99 in Springfield..he was the oldest living person at that time..his home had been used for the underground railroad! His family had a phsrmacy..Masters and Sons.{they dropped the Mc}..His son married Edna Newland ..anyone know about that family? Their daughter , my grandmother, raised her family in Philadelphia where her husband was from..She graduated from Mt Holyoke in 1900...Her father lived to 98 and she to 88...Jonathon McMaster's wife was Laura Bissell who was descended from the Wolcott and Loomis families..anything to share ? Please email me! Ch

looking for Meades of Spring field

I have Mead(e) ancestors in Springfield back to the early 1800s. If anyone knows about them or their descendants, I'd love to chat. thanks!

Re: Looking for descendants of the Mayflower

Hello! My name is Sue Johnson and I am a teacher at Academy Hill School on Liberty Street. My second graders are studying the Mayflower and the 13 colonies. I was wondering if there are any descendants of people on the Mayflower. I know it is a long shot but you never know. If any of you wonderful people are or know anyone, do you think you would be interested in coming in to talk to the class about the ancestor? Thank you for your help in this matter.


Hi Sue --

What kind of information would you want someone to talk about?

Being descended from someone on the Mayflower isn't that uncommon, it's just that most people don't realize it because they haven't done the genealogy to trace back their family's history. With sites like Ancestry.com, where people collaboratively build family trees, and where a lot of books and vital records have been digitized and are searchable, tracing your history has become a lot easier.

You are probably already aware of this, but here is a site that has a complete passenger list of the Mayflower:


Many of the histories of the passengers are one-dimensional though. I think that is typical of genealogical research, it is possible to get names, dates, and events, but very difficult to find depth on a person. I'm surprised that no one has filled in more depth on this group of people over the years, since they are so widely researched, maybe not much information survives.

Newspapers are probably the next frontier for genealogy. The Springfield Republican archives just came online within the past few months. I was surprised to learn that my grandfather was involved in a car accident in which the jury awarded the person he hit something like $20,000 in damages (in 1922!) from my great-grandmother. That never made it into the family narrative. I also learned that my great-grandfather ran for state representative on the Bull Moose party, which tells me a bit about his politics. I find that depth to be fascinating, because it transforms an ancestor from being just a name into an actual person.

Thank you for the response.

Thank you for the response. I know a lot of people do an in-depth search and was hoping to find someone whose ancestor was on the Mayflower. Any information they know about their ancestor and their life on the Mayflower and in the colony would be fascinating to the children as well as myself. Thanks again for the quick reply!

the 1900 picture

this is from technical school in springfield mass.

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