"Anchorage School Daze"

by Mary Jane Dougherty

Denali Elementary

Denali Elementary

There they sat, five lunch bags on the kitchen counter.

Each one had a name written on it. I found mine written in pencil, "Mary", it was written by my mother, Feodoria. The best sack lunch maker in all of Anchorage Alaska.

The day after Labor Day in September back in the late 50's and early 60's was when we went back to school.

Our school was Anchorage Denali Elementary.

We lived on Second and Cordova and Denali Elementary School was on Ninth and Cordova.

Two of my older brothers went to, Central Junior High and my older brother and older sister and I went to Denali.

Lunch sacks in hand we were all ready to go. We said goodbye to our mother and off we went to walk 8 blocks in the early cold morning on our first day back to school.

Along the way we met up with friends and started talking about teachers, recess and what to play after school.

As we walked along the road we came across frosted, frozen mud puddles. We took delight in poking the ice with a stick to hear that familiar "cracking sound." We could see our breath as we talked and walked in the very brisk September air of Anchorage.

When we finally got to Denali Elementary all of us were excited to see who are teacher would be and to warm up inside. We all said our goodbye's and told each other to save us a seat at lunch time so we could have lunch together before going out for recess.

Yum, thinking about the sack lunch that my mother made. Peanut butter on celery, green grapes, tuna fish sandwich and delicious chocolate covered graham crackers. And I had my dime to buy milk.

After a great first day we walked home in the warm afternoon sun. At home I changed my clothes and went out to play with my family and friends.

Anchorage, "school daze", what a lot of fun memories they bring to me.

Do you remember your "school daze" in Anchorage?

Sure would love to hear from you!

Okay it's time to shine that apple for the teacher.

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"Anchorage School Daze"
by: Mary J Dougherty

Ron, your comment below is so interesting to read.
Your trek back and forth to school and Anchorage in 1948. It sure is different now.

The Good Old Daze
by: Ron

In 48 My brother and I had to walk from Bliss street to the Highway Diner about 3 miles through the woods to go to school.

The last 2 blocks Bunn and Lane street I would set my rabbit traps. I set them on the way to school and would pick them on the way home.

Cleaned and stripped, I would sell them to the neighbors for 15 cents. There was a Territorial Policeman that bought most of them.

On Bunn Lane and Bliss street there were 16 families total.

In 1949 the school bus came down Mt View Dr. There was no heat in the bus except for the driver.

I sat close to the front along with the other 6 kids.

Walking to School in Anchorage
by: Michael Dougherty

Denali Elementary school was where I attended to first grade.

I also walked to school from our log home on Fairbanks street.

One time, a classmate convinced me to walk home by cutting through the cemetery.

Of course we were both scared as we walked past all the graves and tomb stones.

And we were sure that at any moment a caretaker was going to chase us away, or worse yet, a hand would come up out of the ground and grab our leg.

After that, I walked to and from school on the sidewalk.

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