Category Archives: Education

David Collins shares vintage photos of Stage Fort Ave homes near Barrett’s Camp #GloucesterMA |searching for artist Byron Brooks Part 3

In response to Searching for artist Byron Brooks (Part 1) and (Part 2), David Collins, a Good Morning Gloucester reader and amateur geneologist, was inspired to act. First he emailed a PDF family tree for artist, Byron Lloyd Brooks, and then shared vivid remembrances and vintage photographs in response to the artist’s timeline in Gloucester, Massachusetts. These are wonderful additions to filling out Brooks story and a peek into Gloucester and Stage Fort Park history. Thanks so much, David!

For a time, Brooks lived in 12 Stage Fort Avenue. Collins’ family lived in 7 Stage Fort Avenue 1940s-1960s. Does anyone know the neighbors Collins mentions or have more photographs of long gone homes and Barrett’s Camp at Stage Fort Park? I’m looking forward to scouting for that boulder.

Part 3 Searching for artist Byron Brooks – David Collins responds:

historic photo courtesy David Collins for artist Bryon Brooks research_shows Stage Fort Park Avenue ca 1940s_his sister with friend_Gloucester MASS

ca. 1950, courtesy photograph to assist with Byron Brooks research from David Collins (his sister with her friend by side entrance 12 Stage Fort Ave, Gloucester, Massachusetts )

“Hello, Catherine, Here is a little more information on the artist Byron L. Brooks, in case you are still interested. I have attached a family tree for him. It does also have some information on his two wives that I know of. I am not a professional genealogist, so don’t take the information as gospel. I grew up at what was then 7 Stage Fort Avenue (no “Park” in the address) in the late 1940s, 50s and early 60s in the house that is now 1 Anchor Lane, I believe. We moved to Connecticut in 1961 the week I turned 16. The house Byron lived in, 12 Stage Fort Avenue, was, back when I lived there, a 2-family house.  Most of the other houses in that part of the neighborhood were, or had been, summer camps. Stage Fort Avenue Y-ed at our house and both parts, one going on to one of the Park’s parking lots and the other going past us to Barrett’s Camps, were named Stage Fort Avenue. The house in front of Byron’s, the address was 10 Stage Fort Avenue back then and is now 7 Stage Fort Avenue, didn’t exist – at least not in the large form it is in now. Sam and Marion (Kerr) Johnson lived there. I think the house burned down in about 1975.

Ralph and Evelyn (DeCoste) Bradstreet lived in the downstairs part of 12 Stage Fort Avenue and several families lived upstairs over the years. Byron must have lived in the neighborhood a while before my family did. I think my folks moved to #7 about 1939 or so. I don’t know when the Bradstreets moved into #12. That said, Byron Brooks was my mother’s 2nd cousin. They share Ephraim Brooks [1818-1905] and Ruth Ward [1816-1892] of Nova Scotia as great-grandparents.

However, I had never heard of Byron until your 2nd GoodMorningGloucester article. I even collect art by people who called Cape Ann home – Charles Movalli was my best friend growing up*. I also have an extensive family tree that I have worked on for many years. Still, I had no idea Byron existed!  Of course, I had his parents in my mother’s part of our tree. I have now added information on him and his many siblings because of your articles. Thank-you! Hope this helps you, in return.” David Brooks 7/1/18

PHOTO COURTESY DAVID COLLINS_ 12 Stage Fort Avenue ca1947_razed_shared for Byron Brooks artist catalogue_Gloucester MA

photo credit: 12 Stage Fort Avenue, Gloucester, MA. ca.1947 photo courtesy David Collins

photo credit below (click to enlarge): 7 Stage Fort Avenue ca.1947-57 (L), and Stage Coach Inn vintage postcard, both images courtesy David Collins

about the photo with the girls on the rock and Stage Fort Avenue homes THEN (now gone):

“This one is of my sister and the girl (and her dog) who lived upstairs at 12 Stage Fort Avenue for several years while we lived on Stage Fort Avenue and then moved to School Street in Manchester. Her father, originally from Rockport, was a 7th cousin of Byron Brooks but I doubt he knew. The girls are sitting on a rock outside the side entrance to downstairs #12, the one the people we called Auntie Evelyn and Uncle Emerson (Ralph Emerson) Bradstreet (both cousins of each of my parents) probably used most often. It led into their kitchen. The doorway at the stairs in front (in the other picture I sent you) led into a hall, with stairs running up to the 2nd floor apartment and also a door at the left into the downstairs apartment.

The building behind the girls and to the left was, at least at one time, a Barrett camp. I think sometimes people bought them and made them more permanent homes even if they didn’t live in them year-round. The family’s name sounded like Brown-eyes but I don’t remember how it was actually spelled. Oh, I do remember: William and Irene (Douglas) Brauneis. Irene Douglas’ brother (a close friend and fishing buddy of my uncle) and his wife and family and his parents lived in the large house at the top of the hill behind the camps that was not a camp. I think the Brauneis family lived in theirs, maybe even full time eventually, long after we had moved.

The next home which looks altogether different was rented out in the summer, too, but I have no idea who lived in it. In the next camp to that one, not in the picture, a Mrs. Morrison spent the summer and her daughter and family, the Kilroys, would join her for a few weeks. Mrs. Kilroy had grown up in Gloucester. I hung around with daughter Carol and brother Robert the part of the summer when they were in town…Henry and Pauline (Osmond) Garvey and family lived in the Barrett camp that abutted our property on (what was then) Stage Fort Avenue. Great family. They would summer there from Tuckahoe, New York, but both had been brought up in Gloucester. ”- David Collins

*author’s note – more on this connection later

Byron Brooks on line catalogue (updated)

 

#CHOOSEGLOUCESTER VIDEO SERIES: MEET GLOUCESTER HIGH GRADUATE KEVIN NOLAN

For Kevin Nolan, Gloucester High School was a springboard to the world of mechanical and electrical engineering at Virginia Tech University.

Kevin says Gloucester High teacher Kurt Lichtenwald taught him about engineering and physics through hands-on projects and classroom teaching, allowing kids to learn about science in whatever way they learn best.

“I’m grateful for the education I got at Gloucester High School,” Kevin says. “My experience being here has been some of the best few years of my life.”

Watch Kevin’s story:

Fourth in a series of video profiles about why students and their families choose the Gloucester public schools. Read the introductory post about the #ChooseGloucester series here. You can also check out the student video profiles of Lizzie LusterAustin Monell and Delaney Benchoff.

#CHOOSEGLOUCESTER VIDEO SERIES: MEET GLOUCESTER HIGH STUDENT DELANEY BENCHOFF

Ask her about Gloucester High School, and Denise Benchoff will tell you about the teachers who come in during the summer to help her daughter Delaney and other kids get a jumpstart on their classes.

“I see a lot of dedication with the teachers,” says Denise, whose older daughter graduated from Gloucester High and went to the University of Delaware to study mechanical engineering. “I’ve talked with a number of parents whose kids have gone on to great colleges. I am happy I chose the Gloucester schools.”

Watch Delaney’s story:

This is the third in a series of video profiles about why students and their families choose the Gloucester public schools. Read the introductory post about the #ChooseGloucester series here. The first profile of student Lizzie Luster is here and the second profile of Austin Monell is here.

#ChooseGloucester Video Series: Meet Gloucester High Student Austin Monell

Austin Monell loves science. At Gloucester High School, he’s built a hovercraft and electric skateboard as part of a bunch of hands-on engineering classes the school has for students. Gloucester High was named the top program in the state by the Massachusetts Technology Education and Engineering Collaborative.

“Between the teachers and the serious students, they share this passion and they mutually motivate each other,” says Austin’s mom, Alison. “His teachers get as excited as he does about some of the projects he’s working on.”

Watch Austin’s story:

This is the second in a series of video profiles about why students and their families choose the Gloucester public schools. Read the introductory post about the #ChooseGloucester series here and the first profile of student Lizzie Luster here.

#ChooseGloucester video series: Meet Gloucester High student Lizzie Luster

First in a series of video profiles about why students and their families choose the Gloucester public schools. Read the introductory post about the #ChooseGloucester series here.  

Lizzie Luster was diagnosed with a learning disability in elementary school. Her mom, Ann Marie, says school is not easy for her. But through her own hard work and help from teachers at Gloucester High School, Lizzie is now taking honors and Advanced Placement courses in preparation for college.

“Her teachers pushed her to be better, to go beyond what she thought was possible,” says her mom. “They’ve allowed her to see the type of student she can be.”

Watch Lizzie’s story:

 

Introducing a New Good Morning Gloucester Video Series: #ChooseGloucester

Choose Gloucester photo wideshot resized

We’ve all heard them. The insults about Gloucester and the people who live here. The lame slights, the outdated stereotypes, the pregnancy pact – seriously we’re still doing that? I remember the soccer game where an 8-year-old boy on our team forgot to take off his watch before playing. The other coach joked about making sure our players took off their guns and knives, too. “This is Gloucester, after all,” he grinned. Another time, a group of parents from the opposing team yelled at us to “Go back to your stinkin’ fish city.”

Of course it seems like it’s always people from other towns that are the most down on Gloucester. The ones who’ve never had a picnic dinner on a blanket at Niles Beach with the kids paddling around on kayaks as the sun sets orange and pink across the Harbor over downtown. Who’ve never walked Main Street at a block party where it takes you an hour to go from Floating Lotus to Toodeloo’s because everyone you know is doing the face painting and giant chess set and “It’s great to see you how are the kids?” Who’ve never gone to a preschool Christmas concert at the Gloucester Fraternity Club where you have to get there 90 minutes early to get a seat because every 3-year-old has four grandparents, three aunts, two cousins and a bunch of neighbors who’ve come to see them mangle “Jingle Bells.”

It seems like it’s always the people who don’t know Gloucester who have the worst impression. I’ve noticed the same thing about the Gloucester public schools, too. As a parent of three kids, I know that our schools, like any school district, can get better. But I also see in our own kids and their friends the little moments of learning and wonder happening in the Gloucester public schools every day. Like the boy at the Math Olympiad ceremony, a Plum Cove Elementary School 5th grader, who did extra math problems all year and worked hard and slowly got better and better and by year’s end ended up scoring in the top 2 percent of all students statewide and there he was, accepting his award at the ceremony last week bashful but smiling as the parents’ applause and cheers rained down. Or our own East Gloucester Elementary School 4th grader, who learned to love music at school this year and at last week’s school-wide concert sang on her own from the stage in front of an auditorium-full of people and it didn’t matter that every note wasn’t perfect because she was brave and fearless and strong and her parents couldn’t have been more proud.

The people who don’t know the Gloucester public schools don’t know about these little moments. How could they? That’s why, over the next four Monday mornings, Good Morning Gloucester will feature a series of videos – one per week – telling the story of a student in the Gloucester public schools in their own words and those of their parents, too. The series was created along with two other Gloucester parents – John Sarrouf and Andrew Luman – in the hopes of sharing stories of why families choose the Gloucester public schools and what they love about their experience.

So stay tuned – the #ChooseGloucester video series debuts here on Good Morning Gloucester next Monday morning, June 18.

(photo of students above – credit to Gloucester Education Foundation).

When a field trip is a field trip! Mass Audubon and O’Maley Middle School

Gloucester public schools have stellar community partners and locales

Mass Audubon Eastern Point Wildlife Sanctuary

 

Two+ centuries of naturalists in Gloucester is quite a legacy. Here’s a partial list from Robbins to Cramer and Smith to Smith–there have been notable champions most every decade.

  • Mason Walton (Hermit of Gloucester)
  • Alpheus Hyatt, principal founder of world famous Marine Biological Laboratory at Woods Hole– from 1880-1886 the school was on Goose Cove and later off Lobster Cove
  • BH VanVleck  (wrote book with David Starr)- instructor at Annisquam seaside laboratory 
  • Samuel Sawyer land conservation
  • Alfred G. Mayor (Hyatt’s son in law) marine zoologist- his studies on marine life led to 1905 book Sea Shore Life
  • Prince Mahidol of Thailand “Sanitary Survey of the City of Gloucester, Massachusetts 1921 by M. Songkla” in city archives- Includes brief history of Gloucester and description of public health activities
  • Roger Babson land conservation and watershed
  • Dr. Ralph Dexter, began his studies on marine life in 1933 (later Kent State) and chimney swifts
  • Ivy LeMon banded monarch butterflies to trace their migration wintering in Mexico
  • Sara Fraser Robbins curator of education ( the title of her classic book The Sea is All About Us was a nod to Gloucester summer resident TS Eliot’ Four Quartets)
  • Betty Smith
  • Dan Greenbaum
  • Sara Evans
  • Philip Weld, Jr
  • Jane Benotti
  • Deborah Cramer
  • Chris Leahy
  • Harriet Webster
  • Martin Ray
  • Kim Smith
  • Ian Kerr

organizations such as Gloucester Civic and Garden Club, Essex County Greenbelt, Mass Audubon, Ocean Alliance, Martime Gloucester, UMASS Marine Station…

easternpoint-iba

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