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Saturday, April 6, 2013

Carneros School - 1 Room

There have been many times while working on my family tree when I think, "Well, that probably about it.  I don't think that I will find any new information.  I've exhausted my family records for now."  Then, I am reminded of my grandfather's favorite thing to say in the face of some needed patience.  He always used to say, "wait awhile".

I really wasn't waiting for or expecting the following photo.  My mom showed up with it a few weeks ago and I almost immediately posted it on my Facebook page.  The back side of the photo indicates "Carneros School - 1 Room - 9 Grades - Abt. 1907 or 08 - Across this road from the social hall and store."  Then the photo has every single person identified.

Carneros School, Napa, CA

So, where did this photo come from and who is in it?  My mom seems to think that her cousin Anne made the copy or print of this and that Aunts Kay and Ellen had made sure that the teacher in the photo had identified all of her students.  

Initially, I thought the "May Flanagan" indicated as the teacher was our Aunt Mary Catherine Flanagan one of my great grandfather's sisters and daughter of Patrick and Kate Flanagan.  When you look closer at the photo, you see a fairly tall woman in the back with dark hair.  Knowing that Aunt Mary taught in San Francisco and that based on other photos she was much shorter and had lighter hair, I can ascertain that the teacher is not Aunt Mary.

I have other photos of Aunt Mary and of the other Mary Flanagan who was rather tall for a woman, and she was a teacher in Napa.  Minnie Flanagan (Mary Elizabeth McLaughlin) was my great grandmother and the teacher in this photo.

The photo may look small on the screen here but I am amazed with the clarity even after I scanned it into my computer.  The back row is left to right:  Russell Murr, Roy Bentley, Albert Raina, Harry Murr, Edgar Geiseke, Stella Brown, Jim Sunnafrank, Madeline Witt, Walter Theilig, Olive Burdick, Louis Kiser, Raymond Raina, May Flanagan (Teacher), Frances Mitchell, Emma Neuenschwander, May Sunnafrank.  The front row from left to right:  Chas. Kiser, Malcolm Brown, Ferdinand Kiser, Henry Zweifel, Lena Oesch, Mathilda Raina, Florence Theilig, Harry Swanson, Volney Murr, Royal Norquist, Simeon Williams, Chris Murr, Fred Raina. 

The details of this photo come through as a result of the identification of every person and the location plus approximate date of the photo.  It is a wonderful discovery that I didn't know my mother had in her things.

It is interesting to note that these children represent the family farmers of the time in the Carneros District in Napa.  My own mother recognizes several of the names.  I even recognize the name "Malcolm Brown" as a man of the same name and is wife are buried at Tulocay Cemetery adjacent to my great great grandparents', Pat and Kate Flanagan, unmarked graves.  

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