I have utterly enjoyed the correspondences shared while finding a home for the 1937 Roslyn Elementary grade six class! To bring my readers up to speed, I’ve corresponded with friends and family members of Bruce Chisholm, Donald Grahame, David Casgrain, Bill Nicholson, John Bishop, Edward Walls and Robert Cockfield. Ultimately, the photograph was sent to Mr. John (Jack) Walls who seems to be one of the only living gentlemen from the photograph. He is third from the right in the middle row. I’d like to send my gratitude to Valerie who made this connection for me…and for Francie who has more connections with me than even I can believe and to Jack.
Thanks to Cynthia’s information, the photograph will be donated to the Westmount Historical Association for safe keeping and for all to enjoy. This has been a lovely experience.
I packed the photograph up, after framing it. Included, were the stories and provenance associated with the number of contacts that were made. I then sent it off to Jack.
I am now celebrating a new friendship with Francie, Jack’s daughter, who is making certain that this piece of history is no longer shuffled about and lost in a second hand store, but finds its way to Westmount Historical Association. Thank you, Valerie.
This is just one of those things I picked up at a second hand shop in Belleville, Ontario…just because it was beautiful, so crisp and nostalgic…a bit of a glare on the photo I’ve included.
Upon removing the frame, I found a list of what I believe to be nicknames and first names of a group of male students Grade six, 1937. I love to get these sorts of things back into the hands of descendants if I can, but because the details are not sufficient to do a search, I’m just landing ‘what I do know’ here, in this one place. If you know anyone who is seeking out this archive, I’d love for it to go to a family member.
“Leonard Cohen, author, poet, and musician, was born on September 21, 1934 to a prosperous Jewish family in Westmount. His grandfather, Lyon Cohen, was the owner of the successful men’s clothing manufacturing firm, the Freedman Company, and was perhaps the Jewish community’s foremost leader during the early decades of the twentieth century. Leonard’s father, Nathan Cohen, died when Cohen was just nine years old, leaving him under the care of his Russian-born mother, Masha, as the family became more dependent on the support of his father’s brothers. Cohen attended Roslyn School and then Westmount High School, while also going to Hebrew school and becoming a bar mitzvah at the Shaar Hashomayim synagogue, where his family was actively involved. It was during his adolescence that he turned more and more to writing and learned to play guitar. This more introverted, artistic side of Cohen in some ways contrasted with the student who played sports and was a leader in extracurricular activities.”
Middle Row: Cummings, Nutter, Casgrain, Williams Chodal Walker Moyle Walls Polcock Oliver
Back Row: Nicholson Bishop Burke Miller Griffith Walls Strachan Waller Cockfield Swaine
Grade VI Roslyn School May 1937
To update this story, I spoke to Joanne Penhale this morning.
“I’m a Montreal-based freelance reporter and your blog post featuring the 1937 photo from Roslyn School has piqued the curiousity (sic) of my editor at the Westmount Independent – the community newspaper serving the community Roslyn is in.”
If a story does, in fact, run in a local newspaper, the chances are greater that this photo will fall into the hands of one of the boys in this photograph…or one of their descendants. I took a new set of photographs as a result of this connection. WHOOT!