Good Stuff

Voices from the past

  • Voices from the Civil War -- 7 p.m. Tuesday, Museum on Main event at the Firehouse Arts Center, 4444 Railroad Ave., Pleasanton, will include portrayals of Civil War characters: Yankee spy Elizabeth Van Lew and a Civil War soldier talking about life in soldier camps. Tickets sold at museum, 603 Main St. Cost: $10, $5 seniors, $3 students/teachers with I.D.

    Past Times

    June 1, 1951 Top stories of the Pleasanton Times

    Headline: "State Will Buy Two Bay Bridges"

    Tolls on the San Mateo and Dumbarton bridges are expected to drop from 50 to 35 cents after final purchase by the state is completed, after the California Toll bridge authority last week voted to buy the spans for $8.25 million. Another $1.8 million is expected to be spent in repairs on the structures.

    Federal approval of a bond issued to finance the purchase is the only obstacle to the bridge transfer. Such approval was expected by the state officials to be a mere formality.

    Headline: '"Fading Away' of Dublin Schoolhouse to be Marked by Party for School Graduates"

    An alumni dance, to be held at the Murray Elementary School in Dublin will be almost the last big affair at the 80-year-old schoolhouse.


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    County records show that the Murray Elementary School District -- named for one of Dublin's first settlers, Michael Murray -- was formed Feb. 3, 1862. It is believed that a one-room school was first constructed in 1856, about one mile from its present site. The present school was also a one-room school for years but was expanded a decade ago to a two-room school.

    Mrs. Loretta Spotorno, principal, now teaches the upper four grades, and Mrs. Francis Gallagher teaches the four lower grades, and 88 pupils registered at the school the opening day -- largely the children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren of Amador Valley residents who attended there themselves.

    Those attending the dance will probably take a trip back to Memory Lane and undoubtedly recall the time -- in the 1880s, maybe -- when the nonfraternization policy went into effect and a high board fence separated the boys' and the girls' playgrounds.

    Then there was a Pleasanton editor, Dan J. Foley, who rode his horse out to the school one day to meet the county superintendent of schools and the principal, to better cement relations between the press and the school. But, when the editor mounted his horse to return to Pleasanton, some of the pupils had placed a burr under the saddle. Nothing was cemented anymore.

    The old swimming hole is located a quarter-mile from the school. The boys fashion a dam there and sneak away on hot days to the cool water.

    Groceries: Safeway. Corned picnics, cured pork, short shank, 43 cents a pound; skinless frankfurters, 65 cents a pound; and fancy bananas, two pounds for 29 cents.

    Real Estate: Sunol. Dandy, two-bedroom, modern furnished home on half-acre county estate among the trees. Price: $10,000, easy terms.

    At the Movies: Roxy Theatre, Pleasanton. Ben Johnson and Joanne Dru star in "Wagonmaster." Also playing: "The Magnificent Brute."

    This Week's Trivia Question: On June 11, 1964, Queen Elizabeth ordered a popular British band to attend her birthday party, and they did. Who were they?

    Answer to last week's question: The first commercial computer, UNIVAC 1, went into service for the U.S. Census Bureau.

    Contact Louise Hartman at lhartman@bayarea- newsgroup.com or follow on Twitter at Newsie1195.