" The History of Lordship!

LORDSHIP SCHOOL

Lordship's First School

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In 1916, the first year that there were enough year-round residents in Lordship with children old enough to warrant a school, a group of the pioneers took action to have a proper building erected for the children. At this time there were only 25 families in the district, but there were 13 children involved who were obliged to commute daily to Center School. The parents of these children felt it was too much of a hardship on the youngsters, all between the ages of 7 and 15 to travel morning and night back and forth from school, especially during the winter months when sickness was prevalent. The problem of the erection of a school was taken up with the selectmen at that time and later referred to the School Board. The late Dr. DeRuyter Howland was then chairman of the board and offered the suggestion that the town would furnish transportation for the children to the school in the Center. But this also necessitated their traveling to and from Lordship and spending their lunch hours in the Center, not then as efficiently policed as today. They were subjected to traffic hazards while darting around the streets with only a certain measure of protection and were a constant worry to the parents. When no building was forthcoming from the town, the residents took it upon themselves to make schoolrooms in Lordship. The first school in that district was located in the Casino or the Community House, which was donated by the Wilkenda Land Company. Heat in the building was also donated by the Lordship Trolley Company by the expedient of looping wires in from the service wire to the electric and car heaters installed inside. The room was so large that it was difficult to heat properly, so a partition was erected in the middle of the space with lumber, beaverboard and blackboard donated by the late A.W. Burritt. All the work necessary on the school was done by the residents with all materials donated and at no cost to the town. Finally, however, the school board gave in to the residents and provided one teacher and furnished 25 school desks! These desks and seats were placed in tiers of six and mounted on cleats so that they could be readily moved when the Community House was wanted for other affairs. The first day that the school was officially opened, nine out of the thirteen children attended class with the others straggling in within a day or two. Mrs. Bass of Stratford Avenue, Bridgeport was the first teacher in the school and held that capacity until about 1920 when another school and teacher was furnished by the town. This was a portable building erected further into the residential area and was a real necessity because of the increased population in that section. By this time there were about 40 children attending school and it was necessary to have two rooms and two teachers. The pupils were registered in the first eight grades but were housed in the two rooms with only two instructors.

October 16, 1922 - WANT NEW SCHOOL: Residents of Lordship Manor are starting a move to secure a permanent school building for that section of the town. Charles Franz, president of the Lordship Civic Club, states that the section has outgrown the portable school and should have a permanent building. He pointed out at the meeting of the council Friday night that the lease on the site of the portable school expires in the spring and that no provision has yet been made to renew the lease. "This matter will have to be taken up soon," he said, in speaking of the school situation at Lordship. "It is time that this section of the town secured a good school. Lordship is constantly growing and need for a larger and better building is already felt." Due to the fact that there is but the one portable school building at Lordship, many of the older children have to attend school one of the other buildings near the center of the town. It is necessary for them to make the long trip to school by way of the shore road trolley line, transferring at Stratford and Hollister Avenues, Bridgeport in a Stratford trolley car, to come to Stratford. Fully an hour is consumed by the children in reaching school and another in getting home.

June 23, 1923 - LORDSHIP SCHOOL HOLDS GRADUATION EXERCISES: The closing exercises of the Lordship Public School were held at Firemen's hall tonight. The Magnificent dance number and the one act playlet The First Flag were received with much applause. Iver Larsen was awarded a certificate of honor for his fine attendance record during the school year. Fifty students attended Lordship School this year. The Lordship Fire Company will hold its monthly pinochle and whist at Firemen's Hall tonight.

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August 23, 1923 - MOVE SCHOOL AT LORDSHIP TO PUT IN HEATING PLANT: Furnace Placed Underground Because of Complaints of Cold Floor. HIT ROCK LEDGE Contractors' Work Delayed But Building Will Be Ready for Fall Opening: A rock ledge struck by the contractors engaged in moving the portable Lordship schools from the old site to the site near the fire house has been giving them considerable difficulty and threatened for a time to delay the work of moving the school so that the structure would not be ready for the opening of school, September 4. The difficulty has been overcome however and enough of the rock removed so that the plans for installing the heating system of the school underground can be carried out as originally planned. The foundation of cement block construction has been completed and workmen were engaged today in the actual moving of the building from the old site to the new one. When the structure has been moved it will be painted inside and out after necessary repairs have been made. The changes being made in the Lordship building followed complaints from parents of this section that the building in winter time was extremely cold, particularly the floor. To overcome this difficulty the heating plant is being placed under ground and warm air from the furnace room will be introduced under the floor of the structure in such a way as to keep a comfortable temperature in the rooms during the coldest weather.

February 18, 1925 - LORDSHIP CHILDREN TO FORM AUDUBON BIRD STUDY CLUB: An interesting talk as given the children in the Lordship School, Monday, by Miss Frances Hurd, school secretary of the Junior Audubon Society of Connecticut. Miss Hurd brought a stereopticon lantern with her and showed colored views of wild birdlife, explaining their nesting habits. Stuffed birds were also used as illustrations. The object of the talk was to have the school form an Audubon club for wild bird study and to teach and encourage kindness to birds and work for their protection. Organization of such a club was started at once, the children responded enthusiastically to the idea. The pupils of the sixth grade are planning the construction of a medieval cattle, beginning actual construction today to illustrate history in connection with their course in medieval history. Last night the basketball team of the Lordship scout-troop 1, was defeated by the Heroes at the Y.M.C.A. hall on Madison Avenue, Bridgeport, by a few points, losing on fouls.

Lordship Gets a New School

February 14, 1936 - BOARD OF EDUCATION DISCUSSES PLANS FOR NEW LORDSHIP SCHOOL: Plans And Specifications For New Building Considered By School Board At Special Meeting Four Room School Asked By Members: A special meeting of the Board of Education was held in the office of Superintendent E. Ward Ireland Friday night. Town Manager William Shea explained the attitude of the Town Council towards the building of a new four-room building in the Lordship district. Plans and specifications for the building were discussed with the board recommending a four-room building so all pupils now attending other schools and being transported from the Lordship district may be returned to their home school. Lovell said the board has always felt because of the isolation of the district the Lordship children should be housed in one school, but previously funds have not been available for construction of a building. The school will be arranged so that only children attending the high school will have to be transported in the future. It is estimated at least eight weeks will be required before the project with plans and specifications can be approved by the regional and state office of the WPA after which it will be forwarded to Washington, D.C. for approval. When the project has been returned and funds allotted work will be started at once. Superintendent of Public Works estimates it will take almost one year to complete the building because of the short hours which the WPA labor is required to work during the month. If possible men now on the town unemployed list who are skilled as masons, carpenters or stone cutters would also be assigned to the work. The sudden desire to build a school in Lordship came about when Superintendent of Schools Ireland went to the portable school building at the request of the Parent-Teacher Association and found the temperature in the two rooms at 50 degrees. Councilman Peter Ring of the Tenth District brought the matter to the attention of the council Monday night when he presented a chart of temperatures recorded by the teachers during January showing many days when 40 and 42 degree temperatures were recorded. Council members from all districts rose in unanimous support of Rings suggestion that the new building be constructed. Councilman Herman Leveen of the Sixth district pointed out that the school would have been constructed a year ago but for a statement by Ireland at a public hearing when he reported that a new building was not necessary then. It was suggested at the council meeting that the building be increased in size so that all children from Lordship now attending school at Birdseye and the Junior High School could be housed in the one building eliminating the necessity of transportation. Chairman Vernon Morehouse said in addition to the new building, which could not be ready until next fall, he felt that the parents should insist at once that their children be transported for the balance of the winter season to Center School where there are now three vacant rooms. Morehouse said he felt the Putney district should also be considered in the construction of schools and Councilman Albert Coulter said he would discuss the matter at the next meeting of the Ninth District Civic Association. Action by the council in approving the construction of a school at Lordship climaxes a controversy which has existed for more than five years. The Lordship School was originally used as a portable building in the rear of Center School and since being moved to Lordship ten years ago has been the center of discussion between parents of the pupils and town officials. Several weeks ago the PTA began an investigation of the temperature conditions which brought about the action by Ireland last Friday when he transferred the principal, Miss E.C. Mendohlson to Garden School, discharged the janitor, Harry Bateman and hired Mrs. Hellmann as the new teacher-principal and Abe Danberg as janitor.

February 15, 1936 - LORDSHIP SCHOOL PLANS GO TO SHEA: Five Room Structure Approved at Special School Board Meeting: Preliminary plans for a five room building to replace the present two room portable school at Lordship were submitted to Town Manager William Shea today after their approval at a special meeting of the Board of Education in the high school last night. Construction of the schoolhouse would cost the town $45,000 the board found, but as a WPA project the Federal Government will pay labor costs and truck hire and the town will furnish only materials. The building will be of fieldstone taken from the town quarry. In recommending a five room structure the Board of Education pointed out that there are enough children in Lordship attending elementary grades to fill four rooms at present. There are 59 pupils enrolled at the two room portable school and 36 others from Lordship are transported daily to schools in the center of town. Councilmen Peter Ring of the tenth district said the five room school would eliminate $700 or $800 from the budget for transportation of school pupils. Town Manager Shea will check the plans and will have estimates before the next council meeting.

February 28, 1936 - LORDSHIP SCHOOL AT STRATFORD POINT: The First District councilman tried to sell the town the idea of buying a site near the lighthouse for the new Lordship school but to no avail. In the first place the site would be more than a mile from the center of population and in the second place the town has no money to spend on sites. The site consists of three acres which would sell at $2,000 an acre but we were informed that the price asked for the three lots would be in the neighborhood of $8,500 the same price that was paid for the Holmes property. The assessed valuation on the land amounts to $350 an acre. People in Lordship do not desire this site but the councilmans friend evidently wants to sell. Where the town could obtain the money for such a venture we dont know. A suggestion has been offered whereby the pupils at Lordship devote an acre of the land to grow vegetables. The proceeds from the sale would be used to balance the school budget. Perhaps in a thousand years enough money would be realized from these sales to pay the town back for the land. Not a bad idea. At least the children would learn a lesson in economy. At the present time we should not consider buying more land but should find a way in which to build a four room school. From all indications it will be some job to build a school for $25,000. As Mr. Lovell stated, a contractor could do the job in two months. It is estimated that with WPA labor it will take at least one year to build the new school. Evidently most of the WPA workers are hunch-backed from leaning on their shovels.

March 20, 1936 - WPA DEADLINE KILLS LORDSHIP SCHOOL PROJECT: All Projects Must Be Completed By June 30, Shea Is Notified Several Projects To Be Discarded: The new Lordship School recently approved by the Board of Education and the town council probably will not be constructed as a WPA project it was learned this week following a communication from the State WPA office. The communication said all projects must be completed by June 30th and that no extensions would be granted over that time. Orders have been received from Washington ordering the state offices to make certain all projects can be completed within that time. Stratford has more projects in writing, some already approved than most communities but due to limited man power, these projects have not been undertaken as yet. The farm-to-market roads have been approved but no fund allocations have been made to date. With the project including some 43 roads in the town, it is doubtful that it could be completed in time even if the allocation was made now. Manager Shea had written to the WPA office requesting information on the type of project and possible finishing dates which might be included in the original application for allotment of funds. Another conference between town and school authorities and leaders in the WPA district is expected to be held soon in an attempt to discover some way in which the school might be built as a relief project. School officials realize that with the WPA labor undertaking stone cutting and other work, it would be impossible to complete the job in the required time. Letting of a contract as a WPA project however, would increase the chance of the job being completed. Under such a project, however, the town would be obliged to contribute 55 percent of the total cost of construction with the Federal government supplying the remainder.

May 17, 1936 - PROPOSED NEW SCHOOL BUILDING FOR LORDSHIP: A four room field stone building with large community hall to be constructed in Lordship replacing a portable school building is use for more that eight years. The WPA project for the building scheduled to cost $39,984 has been sent to the state WPA office. Sketch above was prepared by Ebon Wooley of Stratford for Architect Frederick Beckwith. The first school class was conducted in the Lordship Casino at Pauline Street and Stratford Road, where a store is now located. In about 1920, a two room portable school was erected at the corner of Lordship and Stratford Roads, the building was moved about three years later to Crown Street between Lordship Road and Pauline Street where the new institution now stands. The new school will also serve the district as a community center, according to present indications. In addition to the four classes comprising about 100 children, two evening classes, sewing and gymnastics are conducted every Thursday and Friday, respectively by the Department of Education. Included in the building is a kitchen equipped with a sink, cupboard and oil burner that will allow socials of many natures to be held there. In addition to the four classrooms and the combination stage and room, there are two rooms for manual training or domestic science, an auditorium, a teacher's room and a library.

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October 8, 1936 - BREAK GROUND FOR NEW LORDSHIP SCHOOL: Ground was broken Monday for the construction of the new four room school at Lordship. The building is to be constructed as a WPA project. Shown above at the ceremonies are: left to right, Miss E.J. Kovachik, Mrs. A. Heilmann, Vincent Sullivan, WPA engineer for the Bridgeport district; W. Goddard, Duncan Nairn, H.C. Lovell, School Board president; Peter Ring, Tenth district councilman; F.H. Beckwith, architect; George Coughlin of the Bridgeport WPA offices; Reinhold Persson and John Hamilton.

October 9, 1936 - WPA AND TOWN OFFICIALS TURN FIRST SHOVEL OF DIRT: Town to Pay $16,000 Toward Construction of Four Classrooms and Community Hall - Work to Require Almost One Year - First Classed Held in 1916: The construction of the new Lordship School was officially started on Monday at 1:00, climaxing a twenty year drive by the residents of that district. Robert Hurley, State WPA administrator, Town Manager William Shea and Councilman Peter Ring of the Tenth District broke ground for the new building, amid songs and shouts of the school children and the group of Lordship residents who gathered around for the memorable occasion. For the past five years the Lordship residents have been requesting the officials of the town council for a school in that section and it wasnt until after the steady insistence of Councilman Peter Ring had begun to show the council members the great need for a school there that permission for erection was finally granted. The school is now considered part of the town WPA project with the government furnishing $23,000 for labor and material on the structure and the town supplying the remaining amounting to $16,000. In the new school a teacher-clinic room, a kitchen and a 41 x 60 foot auditorium are provided. There are four 28 x 22 feet class rooms, two being located on either side of the auditorium. Each classroom is provided with bookcases, wardrobes and a library nook and there is ample storage space and cases for exhibition purposes.

August 20, 1937 - NEW SCHOOL AT LORDSHIP WILL NOT BE READY: Lower Classes Will Have To Use Old School Until New Structure Is Completed: Although the new Lordship School will not be completed in time for the opening of school in the fall, pupils in the sixth, seventh and eight grades at the present Lordship School may occupy the new building it was indicated this week. Pupils in the lower classes will continue to attend classes in the old school until the new construction is finished. Frederick Beckwith, architect, reports that while considerable progress has been made in constructing the new building, it will be impossible to have it ready for the reopening of school in September because of the short work periods which the men are permitted to work under the WPA. In the event the rooms are not completed, the Board of Education will be forced to provide extra transportation funds for the pupils to Birdseye School. When the budget was prepared for the current fiscal year, this item was deleted inasmuch as it was anticipated that the building would be ready for occupancy by September. The old portable building standing to the east of the new structure was not torn down this summer as had been anticipated so that it may still be used to house classes. Teacher appointments have already been made for the full eight grades and it will require reassignment of teachers until the building is completed and ready for occupancy. Architect Beckwith announced that two rooms are practically completed and it is possible that the transportation problem may be solved by permitting the older students to use the two rooms.

September 2, 1937 - FIELDSTONE BUILDING TO REPLACE OLD PORTABLE SCHOOL AT LORDSHIP: Schoolhouse Constructed as WPA Project to be Finished in November: Another antiquated portable school building will be discarded by the Stratford school system in November when the new modern field stone school building is opened in the Lordship district for the first time. Opening the new school will eliminate the necessity of transporting the three higher grades to Birdseye School and will permit the seven grades below high school to attend classes in one building for the first time since a school was established in Lordship. Constructed at a cost in excess of $45,000 the building is one story high of colonial design. The center section measuring more than 30 feet in height on the outside is finished with stucco and wooden columns. Wrought iron grills beneath the windows on each side of the main entrance give the building a trim appearance. The classrooms, four in number are located in the field stone wings, two on each side of the building. As large as the present rooms in which two and three classes are taught the rooms will care for the increased registration anticipated when schools reopen this year. Floors are a special composition with 1-2 in mastic covering throughout the building. The heating system, oil burner is located in the basement of the structure. Lavatories are located on each side of the main floor with work shops for carpentry also located near the classrooms. At the front portion of the auditorium a teachers room and clinic will be on the west side of the building and a kitchen on the east side. The auditorium measures 31 by 41 feet with a 20 foot ceiling making it adequate for indoor athletic contests. The entire building facing Crown Street has a frontage of 95 feet in contrast to the tiny portable located at present just to the east of the new building. The lavatories are equipped with showers for athletic contestants and at the north end of the auditorium a stage has been constructed. During school hours the stage is so built that it may be used for a kindergarten class room. Started in October 1936 it is estimated that one year and one month will be required to complete the structure, a WPA project. The fieldstone used for the class wings was quarried in the town forest by unemployed. Frederick Beckwith of Stratford was the architect, the town purchasing the plans outright to be used as a model for other school construction work.

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February 4, 1938 - NEW LORDSHIP SCHOOL TO BE OPEN FEBRUARY 16: Public Invited To Ceremony In New Building At 8:00 P.M.: Formal opening of the new Lordship School, constructed under WPA will be held Wednesday, February 16, at 8 pm with parents of all children attending and the residents of Lordship invited to participate in a special program arranged for the occasion. Dr. Frank Bunnell, chairman of the Board of Education, Manager William Shea and members of the town council will be invited to speak. Councilman Peter Ring of Lordship is a member of the building committee which supervised construction. As a part of the ceremonies the building committee will turn the building over formally to the town council. In turn the council will turn the building over to the Board of Education to be used for educational purposes in the Tenth District. The four room building with its large auditorium, was constructed on the site of the old portable building after Councilman Ring had informed the council that savings might be made in educational funds if all Lordship pupils were instructed in one building instead of one half in the suburban area and the balance at schools in other sections of the town. At Councilman Rings request the council was unanimous in approving a budget for $42,000 for the new building. Frederick Beckwith of Stratford was architect. The committee in charge of the formal opening ceremonies includes: Mrs. Emma Cowles, general chairman; Mrs. Peter Ring, president of the Lordship PTA and chairman of reception; Mrs. John Saul, hospitality; Mrs. Russell Moore, Mrs. Thomas Burns, Mrs. John Bateman, in charge of decorations; Mrs. Charles Wiedman, Mrs. Albert Beucher, Mrs. Florence Schrader, Mrs. Clifford Beeman, music committee; Mrs. Raymond Leonard, publicity. Mrs. John Van Yorx, member of the Board of Education and Mrs. Herbert Wickham will be in charge of the ushers. The ushers, all former pupils in the school will include Dorothy Murkette, Lucy Leonard, Phyllis and Shirley Wickham, June Mayer and Jean Saul. More than one year was required to construct the one story structure of field stone which will house four class rooms, an auditorium with stage, modern sanitary facilities, an oil burning furnace and workshops for students.

February 15, 1938 - LORDSHIP SCHOOL TO BE OPENED AT CEREMONY CONDUCTED BY P.T.A.: Formal Transfer of Building to Board of Education Set for Tomorrow: The new WPA built Lordship School, which has replaced the portable building used for many years will be formally opened at a ceremony to be conducted tomorrow night by the P.T.A. Work on the structure was started in December 1936. In addition to four classrooms, the building includes a combination stage and room, two rooms for manual training or domestic science, an auditorium, a kitchen, a teachers room and a library. Demands of Lordship residents in 1936 for a new portable building will be fully realized tomorrow night when the new Lordship School is formally turned over by the Town Council to the Board of Education at a special opening ceremony at 8 oclock under the auspices of the Parent-Teacher Association of that school. Council Chairman Vernon Morehouse will present the key to the school to Dr. Frank Bunnell, chairman of the Board of Education. The present building, modern in all respects was started as a WPA project in December 1936 and was completed last month, although several minor matters must be taken care of in the next few days. Work was started on the institution when the council heeded the requests of the rapidly increasing Lordship district for a modern school to replace the old portable and authorized the building of a four room school. The rapid development of the district prompted the building committee composed of Councilmen Peter Ring and Carlton Schwable to enlarge the school and a combination stage room was built.

June 26, 1938 - LORDSHIP LIBRARY OPEN: The Lordship Library will be open tomorrow from 3 to 5 p.m. and every Tuesday thereafter during the summer months it has been announced. The library will be closed on July 4.

June 23, 1939 - NO PLAYGROUND FOR LORDSHIP: Residents of Lordship are expressing keen disappointment that attention is not being given to the establishment of a summer playground in that area of the town under the provisions of the program in force in all other parts of Stratford. Playgrounds will open at six different sites on Monday morning under the direction of Thomas Andrews. Lordship mothers carrying their woes to the P.T.A. of the district and the Know Your Neighbor club have decided to appeal through Councilman Peter Ring. There are about 300 children who attend public schools living in Lordship with that number increasing proportionately during the summer when playgrounds are in use. Under the present setup, youngsters of Lordship desiring to take part in playground activities must either go to the Birdseye a distance of nearly two miles. Although the beach front provides recreation for some of the children, many mothers have been reluctant to allow their youngsters to stay at the beach without supervision. All playgrounds have instructors on the premises from opening to closing time. The Lordship school grounds have been promoted as the possible place for a playground project in the community.

October 19, 1939 - LORDSHIP LIBRARY TEA: A silver tea will be held from 3 to 5 p.m. today at the Lordship Library in commemoration of the seventh anniversary of the organization. Mrs. Howard DuCharme and Mrs. Edmund Butler will pour. Assisting will be Mrs. Charles Callaghan, Miss Alice Leonard, Mrs. Thomas Burns, Mrs. Charles Comlish and Mrs. John Saul. Proceeds will be used to the purchase of new books.

JUNE 9, 1942: LORDSHIP SCHOOL ADDITION ALMOST DONE: The four room addition to the Lordship School which has been under construction for about five months is now 98 percent finished, so far as the building is concerned and contains many new features which will interest the parents of Lordship when they make an inspection. The addition has been a joint project of the War Public Works Division of the Federal Works Agency and the town of Stratford. The total construction cost has been $50,478 and 75 percent of this has been paid by the federal government. The government will also pay 75 percent of the cost of the furnishings and the extensive grading which is being pushed to completion. When this is finished, the Lordship School will have a roomy and modern playground. The job has been done under the supervision of William J. Mulvey, Federal Works Agency engineer and Duncan Nairn, representing the town. The school to which this addition has been built was a town sponsored WPA project and was constructed under the supervision of Mr. Nairn. It is considered one of the three finest schools built under WPA auspices in Connecticut.

July 21, 1944 - LORDSHIP HAS TWO MORE LOTS ADDED TO GROUND FOR A PARK: Some 12,000 Feet Acquired By Town Council: Substantial progress toward enlarging the playground facilities in Lordship was made last week when the Town Council authorized the purchase of two lots from the Lordship Park Association for $600 each. James Staples & Company was the broker. Acquisition of the two lots was another step in a general program which long has been advocated by Councilman Peter Ring Jr. and other residents, with the immediate idea that greater playground facilities can be provided. Tentative discussion also has been heard that in the future the ground may become necessary for additions to the towns buildings in Lordship or some other public purposes. The purchase adds some 12,000 square feet to the community area on which the Lordship School and the Lordship Firehouse are built. The lots lie between those structures; each is 50 feet by about 120 feet. When Town Manager Shea laid before Council last week the offer to sell the lots to the town, Councilman Ring moved its acceptance with a relish which he made no effort to minimize.

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August 22, 1947: LORDSHIP PLAYGROUND ADDITION NOW APPEARS TO BE UNDOUBTED: Joseph Prokop late last week informed Town Manager Flood that Town Councils offer of $900 each for the two lots which he owns and which are desired to add to the Lordship Playground is acceptable to him. Formal action by the town is expected at the next meeting of Council, which is scheduled for September 8. Mr. Prokops letter did not reach the Municipal Building until after the August meeting of Council. Purchase of the Prokop lots will virtually complete the plan to extend the Tenth Districts public playground as Council on Monday of last week accepted offers of owners of three other lots for the same purposed and directed Manager flood to attend to details. Necessary funds for the purchases were appropriated from the contingent fund. The owners who thus will sell to the town are Emily Wolfram, Lot # 546 on the Map of Lordship; Mary Drew, Lot # 547 and Ida Smith Lot # 548. The Prokop lots lie beside them. The price of the Smith lot is $907 and of the other two $900 each. Mr. Prokop had listed considerably higher prices on the public market for his plots. In accepting the towns offer, he told Manager Flood that he was doing so because the property was desired for recreational purposes for the schools. Council at last weeks meeting had directed Manager Flood to institute condemnation proceedings against owners of plots which the town wishes to add to the park system if terms could not be arranged amicably.

September 28, 1951: LORDSHIP SCHOOL WOES JUST BEGINNING, BOARD OF ED SAYS: Lordship Schools problems are just beginning.  It is quite evident that the Lordship School is in for numerous difficult situations in the immediate future because of an ever increasing pupil load, parents of the children in Lordship School were told this week in a communication from Roland Yale, chairman of the Board of Education. Mr. Yale indicated in the letter that the Board was not too happy with the regrouping movement it took following a meeting with Lordship parents last Friday. Twenty Grade 7 pupils who were on their way to Birdseye will end up in the auditorium. In future cases however, when the Board of Education makes a decision, it will make its move after five days notice and the decision of the Board of Education will be final. Mr. Yales recommendation follows:  As you know, the Board of Education has decided to regroup all pupils from Grade 4 through 7 at Lordship School, placing the twenty Grade 7 pupils in the auditorium. A light meter test shows that the lighting is adequate. On Sunday morning without the sun shining and without artificial light, the meter read 20. A reading of 15 is considered the minimum requirement, while 30 is considered desirable in a new modern school. The Board of Education is very much concerned about future prospects for Lordship School. Less than one-half of the homes in the Lordship Estates housing development are occupied. Should many additional pupils enter Lordship School in the next three months, it is doubtful if the present plans will suffice to finish this school term. Should the classrooms become too crowded, the Board of Education may deem it advisable to employ additional teachers and place several classed on one-half day sessions. Should such a situation develop, it is quite probable that the grades to go on half day sessions will be grades 7, 6, 5 and 4 in whatever grouping seems most suitable at the time. Next September (1952), it may be considered necessary and advisable to place nearly all grades at Lordship on half day sessions. The contract for the South Junior High School calls for completion by September 1, 1952 in which case all seventh and eighth grade pupils will be transferred to the new school. If the school is not completed by September 1, 1952 the Board of Education may transfer temporarily all seventh and eighth grade pupils to Birdseye School. In any case, because of anticipated crowded conditions at Lordship School, the Board of Education will make a careful study of conditions as they arise, work out what is considered the most feasible solution, give the parents and pupils at least five days advanced notice and the decision of the Board of Education will be final.

June 20, 1957 - STRATFORD HONORS EMMA COWLES, LORDSHIP PRINCIPAL 25 YEARS: Town officials joined with hundreds of townspeople last night at a special ceremony in the Lordship School in Stratford in observance of the 25th anniversary of Mrs. Emma Cowles, 98 Sutton Avenue, Stratford, as principal of the Lordship school. Mrs. Cowles has been a teacher in the Stratford school system for 32 years. During the ceremony Mrs. Hazel Bixby, president of the Lordship PTA and chairman of the reception presented a silver coffee and tea service to Mrs. Cowles as a token of esteem from the pupils of the school and the PTA. A special musical program was presented by the members of the Lordship Fathers Club. Among the members of the official town family and education department extending greetings to Mrs. Cowles were, J. Oliver Carson, assistant superintendent of schools; Miss Eleanor Varney, director of elementary education; Alton M. Torgan, chairman of the Stratford Board of Education; Town Manager Harry B. Flood and the various principals and directors of the special services of the public school system. Open house was observed with hundreds of residents from the Lordship area attending. Mrs. Cowles, in addition to her duties as principal of the Lordship school, is recording secretary of the Principals, Supervisors and Directors club and a member of the Evening service group of the Lordship Community Church.

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Lordship1974school

Lordship school

December 14, 1961: SELECT WINNING ESSAY ON LORDSHIP HISTORY AND LORE: Last month the Lordship Improvement Association conducted an essay contest on a subject pertaining to history, folklore or landmark in Lordship. Those eligible to participate were children of the immediate area in grades 4 through 6 from Great Neck, Lordship or Blessed Sacrament Schools. The prized was a $25 savings bond. The winner announced at the organizations last meeting is Patricia Tristine, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Martin Tristine of First Avenue, a sixth grade student in Blessed Sacrament School, submitted this winning essay:  Lordship is a small peninsula located for out on Long Island Sound. In the late 1800s families began to buy land and settle there, attracted by the sea shore and the cool breezes in summer. It was a lovely place to raise children and little by little the community grew until there was a need to educate the children. The first school was located in the center of Lordship in a building called the Casino. This school was over a grocery store and a firehouse. It had two rooms with three grades in one room and five in the other. The heat came from the grocery store. The second school in Lordship was on the same spot of the present school. It was a wooden building put together in parts. There were two rooms and an entry hall. Under the hall was a small hole to hold the furnace. There was a small room in the back heated by a pot bellied stove which was used as the nurses room. The roof was held on with heavy wires and iron pipes. Although it was not a sturdy building it stood up even during hurricanes. It creaked. Windows rattled and it leaked during storms. The janitor was also the fireman. Classes were called to school with a big hand bell and the children took turns ringing it. Grades one, two and three were in one room and four, five and six in the other. In 1938 a new permanent school was erected in Lordship. This school had four rooms and best of all an auditorium. There were two grades in each room. Now because of the auditorium, many events were held in the school. The two big events of the year were the Christmas Pageant, The Nativity, which the whole school participated and the graduation program. Another program was held on Arbor Day. All of the trees in front of the school were planted by former pupils. In 1942 an addition of four rooms was added and in 1954 another six rooms were added to make it a fourteen room school. With fourteen rooms the pupils were still on half time and there were twenty-two classes. It seemed impossible, but our little community now needed another school and so Great Neck School consisting of six grades was built at the opposite end of Lordship. This may be the end of the story on school in Lordship, but perhaps there will be still another school to come. Many of the Catholic children in the community attend Catholic schools outside of Stratford. They must commute every day to these schools. It is their hope to someday have their own school here in our fine community and maybe this will be so, some day soon and make a long desired dream come true. Lordship has always before and now tried to keep this a fine place to raise and educate their children so that they will grow into reliable, outstanding citizens of whom we can all be proud.

October 23, 1977 - COUNCIL AWAITS BOE INPUT ON LORDSHIP SCHOOL PLANS: Now that the furor has settled down over the million dollar feasibility study for renovations to Lordship School, the Board of Education will recommend which projects are necessary for consideration by the Town Council. Board member Anthony Caseria, also a member of the school building needs committee said at a meeting between the two bodies Wednesday, that repairs to the boiler system are most important. Board of Education chairman Robert Croatti added that some windows should be fixed, a new all purpose room should be constructed and renovations should be made to the front classrooms, the oldest in the building. Most board members agreed that the work needed is not as extensive as the projects considered in the feasibility study. That study had been a sore point with some board members who felt the school building needs committee had gone over their heads by requesting the study and releasing it to the Council and press before the entire board had seen it. Assistant Superintendent Henry Fagan stressed that the study was just that, a study. But the extent of work required is more than just a financial issue involving Lordship. Councilman Robert Frankel expressed concern over the fate of the recently closed Great Neck School which is now up to the Council to determine. Frankel noted that if extensive renovations are necessary at Lordship, students might need to be temporarily housed in Great Neck, thereby precluding any current plans to rent of sell the school. Among the plans being considered for Great Neck is to lease it to the Lordship Christian Center. So Frankel asked board members to supply the Council with information on possible future needs for Great Neck. Caseria said Lordship renovations should not be extensive enough to require work after a summer vacation. Board member Greg Fairbend added that space in the parochial school might be available for rent if need be. Superintendent John Ohla, citing enrollment projections until 1981 indicated that the old and small classrooms in the front of Lordship would not be needed, making renovations unnecessary. Frankel said he felt renovations to these classrooms should be done soon. Exactly what will be done to Lordship will be determined by the Council, but now it is awaiting recommendations from the Board of Education.

March 29, 1978 - BOARD OF ED PROPOSES LORDSHIP IMPROVEMENTS: Some time in the next few weeks the Stratford Board of Education will decide whether to send the Town Council a plan calling for extensive improvements to the 40 year old Lordship Elementary School. The proposed improvements would cost approximately $700,000 according to Assistant School Superintendent Henry Fagan. He said a state building grant could provide 50 percent of the funds, but the Town would have to pay for the rest, possibly by bonding. But before the plan can be sent to Council, the Boards special committee on the structure of the school system must assess the plan in terms of enrollment projections and possible system structure changes. Then the Boards planning committee will take another look before returning it to the general board for approval before sending it to the Council. Board members seem to agree that the building constructed in 1936, is in serious condition and needs improvements if it is to serve community needs in the future. Lordship School seems more important since Great Neck Elementary School was closed last fall and its pupils sent to Lordship. From a feasibility study detailing possible improvements to Lordship totaling $937,000; the Boards planning committee has recommended around $700,000 in projects. The projects proposed include the removal of the section of the building built in 1936 and replacement with a structure which would included twelve new classrooms and a learning center. The new addition would also have a new all purpose room with a playing area of not less than 60 feet by 90 feet. The room would also have a stage in it. The improvements would include construction of a new kitchen, offices for a nurse and the principal and a general office. The addition would have small teaching stations approximately 10 feet by 12 feet for instruction of small groups of one to five people. The renovations would also include replacement of windows and improvements to the ceiling. Last fall the pre-election board had met the feasibility study with skepticism, questioning whether such extensive renovations were necessary. But the present board seems to favor the improvements, although they do not all seem ready to rush head on into the project. James McMellon wants to make sure the proposed addition could accommodate grades kindergarten through eight in case the present system structure is changed. McMellon also raised the possibility of renovation the current structure. But with the closure of Great Neck and with Lordship expected to house those pupils, the improvements would appear to be necessary.

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