50th REUNION PHOTOS

50th REUNION PHOTOS

The first wave on Friday night

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L to R: Nancy Shepard Kovaleff, Cindy Dietz, Susan Antonidies Carr, Jeni Smith, Jane Wales, Elizabeth Evans Iliesiu, Linda Glazer Toohey

Not pictured: Liz Beal Bowman and Anne Todd Osborn & Fred Osborn

Seventeen 66ers attended their 50th Reunion on Mount Ida Friday May 20 – May 22 and had a wonderful time reconnecting with friends and memories. As many of those memories included classmates who could not attend, you were sorely missed.

We also remembered our classmates that left us too soon: Diane Bedford, Lorna Lincoln, Dagy Neely, Jill Simonds, Jeannie Strong, Pattie Robbie, Ann Wells, Esme Barnes, Peggy Fields, and Libby Huntington.

Thank you to all who took and shared these photos of friends, events and the beautiful campus. And that’s where I’ll start.

When you step on campus you are reminded and awestruck by the beauty both outside and inside these almost 200 year-old buildings (the school was founded in 1821).

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Slocum

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Slocum staircase

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Assembly Hall

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Cynthia D and Elizabeth E

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Miss Clugston’s English class

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Panoramic view of old Library

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Emma Willard

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New Library

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Sage to Hyphen

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Hyphen to Kellas

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Sage Tower

Those brave of heart climbed the Tower….legally!

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Anne T in the Tower

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Barb Greenwood, Elizabeth Evans Iliesciu, Kathy Thompson McCurdy

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Elizabeth Evans Iliesciu

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Panoramic view Sage and Kellas

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Panoramic view of Slocum and Sage

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Field side of Kellas (3rd floor quad 1963 to the right: Tabby S, Jeannie S, Kathy T, Avery W.)

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Thank you Nancy for this beautiful photo

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On our walkabout, we discovered there are no more quads and yes, Tabby and I went into our Sophomore “quad” to discover “someone is sleeping in my bed!”

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Lounges are double in size and many include kitchenettes. In this photo, Nancy S. discovered her quad with Julia Scott-Barrett, Mary Ellen Owre, and Dagy Neely had been turned into a lounge.

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Library, back of chapel, etc

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Kellas Hallway

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Jeni Smith

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Kellas Window

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Downstairs in Kellas, our homeroom is now the bookstore.

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Chapel from Sage

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The gargoyles were to see us back.

Murals

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Here was the program for the weekend:

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The Emma bag

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Those who could make the parade: Jeni S., Cynthia D., Nancy S., Tabby S., Kathy T., Elizabeth E., Kathy S., Liz B., Gwen G., Susan A., Jane W., Anne T.

Click here for an up close and personal look.

From the parade it was on to lunch…click here

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Back: Elizabeth E, Kathy S, Gwen G, Jane W, Anne T, Emma, Cynthia D, Front: Nancy S, Kathy T, Susan A

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Elizabeth E, Fred Osborne (Anne T’s husband), Cynthia D, Liz B

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Interim Head of School with Susan A and Linda G

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Kathy S, Gwen G, Susan A

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Happy girl Suz!

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Jane and Jeni

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We went to greet Heidi Dolan Baldwin.

After lunch we walked the campus, attended a beer tasting, and looked for all rooms.

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Jane W.

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1st floor Sage sitting area

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2nd floor Sage

Click here for video of the stairs in Sage.

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Anne and Suz

Beer Tasting

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Linda and Gwen

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I went off to find what used to be the Cafe and the tunnels. The Cafe area is now the Health and Wellness center but I was able to find the beginning of the tunnels from Hyphen to Sage. In the video, I say I am under Kellas but I am under Sage. Click here.

Small details and memories all over campus

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Drain by the Archway

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Dogwood by Archway

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Cocktails, dinner and our class photo took place Saturday evening at Wellington Lay.

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Kathy T. and Cathy K.

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Jane Wales and Fred Osborne

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Nancy and Gwen

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Linda and Jeni

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Jane Manopoli and Susan Antonides Carr

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Heidi Dolan and Anne Todd Osborne

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Jeni Smith

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Cathy Kernan and Osbornes

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Jeni, Gwen, Nancy

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Barb Greenwood and Suz Antonides Carr taking photos. Send me the photo, Ladies!

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Jeni Smith and Kathy Thompson McCurdy

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Liz Evans Iliesciu and Liz Beal Bowman

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Tabby, Cathy, Kathy, Jane, Liz, Gwen, Linda, Cynthia, Heidi

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Nancy, Kathy, Jane, Suz

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Class photo – 50th Reunion of the Class of 1966

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Individual gifts-jester necklaces

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Linda, Jane

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Dessert – note the Chinese Chews. It was decided this recipe (from the Fair Exchange) did not taste like the school’s so Gwen shared this.

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Barb Greenwood still had her ring

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Checking out yearbooks

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Beautiful staircase at Wellington Lay

After dinner we met in the hospitality suite at the Hilton that EW had set up for us. It was a time for more memories, including Liz Beal’s rendering of the alma mater.…all verses!

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Til we meet again….Farewell to a great weekend. Hoping to see more friends in 2021……

AFTER THE WEEKEND

From Anne Todd Osborne

So glad you came Barb! I feel so glad so many of us pulled it off and want to keep trying to get together on whichever coast(s). Living on a boat w/ Fred and 2 dogs this week. It seems to be working…Love to all, Anne Todd (Osborn)

From Barb Greenwood

A week later, back from Cape Cod where I was visiting a close friend I met only 2 yr after we graduated; and before Memorial Day is officially over, has me still thinking how wonderful it was to see each of you there at our 50th last weekend, and remembering everyone who make up the class of ’66. I also felt refreshed to reconnect, as Suz had said, and feel so grateful to have made the trip. Surprised also to hear so many stories of teenage angst at EW which I think I felt much of my 4 years’ time there. Also thanks again Kathy for keeping us in touch so smoothly. Would love to connect with anyone who plans on visiting Boston anytime. Please get in touch. Happy summer. Love Barb G.

From Jane Manopli

It was a fascinating and joyous weekend, one in which we shared our memories – often quite different from one another’s – renewed and made friendships, and saw how Emma had been transformed, most probably for the better. There’s a line in an old Paul Simon song the goes after changes upon changes, we are more or less the same. Perhaps that is true, but I think we are certainly wiser, stronger and kinder. A bit melancholy to wonder if our paths will cross again, so perhaps we should resolve to make a stronger effort to stay connected.

And in that vein, enormous thanks to Kathy whose perseverance made it all happen. Kudos.

Love to you all. Jane

From Nancy S

Already I miss you all! And miss those who could not join us!

Like Suz, I “feel younger – sort of refreshed”! But I came away feeling I had just got a glimpse of everyone’s lives and wishing to know each and every one of you better! I think I dreamed I was trying to continue a conversation with Gwen.

Yes, let’s stay connected, and I add my thanks to Kathy for the huge effort of corralling us all.

Love, Nancy

From Susan Atonides Carr

Yes, indeed! I was thrilled to be back at EW and to see you all. A mighty group we were.

But I must admit I did not feel too mighty on the way to the airport at 6am. Thanks, Heidi for keeping me up until 3 hours before I needed to be awake- and then for being sure that I was indeed awake to get to the airport.

Kathy- what a great communications organizer you are- thanks for all the energy you put into it.

I am amazed that I actually feel younger- sort of refreshed, for lack of a better word?– after seeing you all. Strong work-

my love and thanks to each- Suz

MEMORIES AND MESSAGES-2016

JUNE 4, 2016

From Surpik

Hi everyone: I am remembering a sweet moment, when Poggey came to visit me in my studio at home with Jeannie Cowden who came to visit her in Houston. Jeannie was so wonderful, she had not changed a bit, she was as vivacious as always, with her thick southern accent. She looked carefully at my surrealist collages, which for years I made by cutting and pasting images taken from hundreds of art postcards, collected since my youth. I told her that my Armenian grandmother had come from Tiblisi, Giorgia to Minneapolis in the early 1920s with very little, escaping the genocide. But, one of her prized possessions was a tin box with postcard/ pictures of her hometown. I was evoking my grandmothers story by making my own postcard collages. Jeannie had a brilliant idea: ” why dont you take these images back to Armenia and have the women there make them into miniature embroidery? I still think of that idea, as completing my work in a very meaningful way. Jeannie and Poggie were both such pure souls. They died just a few months from each other, I believe.. I think of them with tenderness. Did anyone else see Jeannie after EWS?

Also from Surpik:

Dear Kathy and Julia: Since Julia was interested in researching Mary Ellens whereabouts, this is what I found on google: I remember something about her working at the law firm. In any case, this might explain why she is not seen lately.

Heres one side of the story:

Former TV news reporter Mary-Ellen Conway lost her bid Monday for a sizeable chunk of the estate of the late businessman and philanthropist Henry J.N. Taub, to whom she claimed to be married.

The case was scheduled for trial this week but court personnel said it was settled confidentially instead. Harris County Probate Judge Kathy Stone issued a final judgment and finding of facts based on an agreement between Conway and Taub’s adult children.

The judge ruled Conway would take nothing. Stone found that Conway never married nor cohabitated with Taub, nor was she given a wedding ring.

The case has been resolved in my client’s favor for its nuisance value, the Taub children’s lawyer Don Jacksonsaid in a written statement. The court’s findings of fact make it clear that there was absolutely no validity to Ms. Conway’s claims and cites 19 individual reasons why Mr. Taub and Ms. Conway were never married, formally or informally. The evidence was overwhelming.

Taub died at the age of 85 in 2004 and it was just minutes before the fourth anniversary his death that Conway filed her claim.

This is another side of the story:

Conway, 62, a former medical reporter for KTRK Channel 13 and now a lawyer at Fulbright & Jaworski, was often seen on Taub’s arm at society functions. The pair met in 1985 at a Baylor College of Medicine event. Until this court-approved agreement, Conway claimed they lived together, held themselves out as a married couple and intended to be married. Neither Conway nor the Taub children would comment publicly on the dispute. The Taub children presented the court with 53 affidavits from relatives, employees at the River Oaks house, and a Who’s Who of Houston society, including Lynn Wyatt and Joanne Herring, famed trial lawyer Joe Jamail, members of the Hobby, Blanton, Love and Robertson families and prominent doctors all saying Taub never referred to Conway as his wife. But Conway also had witnesses who heard Taub call her his wife and believed them to be married by common law.

Nancy S. found news of Celia Cooke and her death:

I reached Celia Cook’s husband, Jed Distler, a musician and composer, who told me that she had died of breast cancer about 5 years ago. He was kindly and forthcoming in sharing information about their life together. He said she did not have good memories of boarding school and had not liked authority. (I told him that fit right in with our class’s reputation.) He told me she had gone to NYU and had been a brilliant mathematician. She was determined to deal with her cancer through alternative medicine and by the time she realized it wasn’t working, it was too late. Together they planned his life after her death to the extent that he is now happily married to another musician they both knew.

Jed emailed me Celia’s obituary:

Celia Cooke (January 22nd 1948-March 30th 2011) passed away in 2011 after a long battle with breast cancer. She was a faculty member of the Borough of Manhattan Community College, where she taught mathematics. Along with her husband composer/pianist Jed Distler she founded the not-for-profit contemporary music organization ComposersCollaborative, Inc. in 1987. As CCi’s production manager, Celia produced numerous concerts and festivals, many of which included world premieres.

Samples of her nearly 1000 abstract Polaroid photographs can be found here:

 

http://composerscollab.org/Celia/celia_picts.html

From Chris Smith

Wow! Great to hear from you! I was flooded with wonderful memories as I looked at the pictures and read the notes on the website.

Ive had my differences with Emma in recent years. _..but no bad resentments from the past. The academics at EW were way over my head, and there were plenty of classes I dreaded – but I loved the people and the athletics. Living in dorms, with all my friends, was a very happy way to spend my teen years.

Every single picture from reunion told a story. Wish I had been there to hear your laughter.

Ohhh_the stuff we had to deal with from that administration! My biggest gripe:

Why didnt anyone mention Mr. Dietels derogatory tag – referring to us as the class with promise? I thought he held out little hope for us ever achieving anything. However, he did, sort of, tone down that view when I met him in NY City, years later. He had no apology for his unhelpful characterization, but he was amazed at who we had become. I guess thats worth something.

June 2, 2016

I can’t believe some of what I am reading – I, of course, thought I was the ONLY one who hated the place! I wrote home that we were in jail because the leaded windows reminded me of bars on the windows. I always thought the day students were so lucky because they could go home at night – never thought that they would want to live on campus!

I remember being in Hyphen in my room that was in the corner – a converted broom closet! The good news was that half the time when the Room Mother (Mrs. Allen) looked down the hall she could not see that I was studying or listening to baseball games after lights out! And speaking of the Two-Way, i remember Cindy Carlson telling me I really should try yogurt- it was so good – and I had never had any!

I loved sports and playing sports meant going to games on Saturdays and being able to leave campus!

I think what I objected to the most was that we were always guilty until proven innocent. Yes – we would “break the rules” but even when we didn’t no one cared what our story was. Also, Betsy Miller and I went to Mr. Dietel in the fall of junior year to ask if we could have Ring Dinner the end of junior year so we could wear our rings over the summer – and he basically kicked us out of his office – tradition. I think Ms. Pickard and our Science II teacher – was it Ms. Wykoff – were the meanest.

Well – enough of the bad! Yes I thought I received a good education but was never sure at what cost. I think my self esteem by the time I left was very low and it took me a long time to recover.

As many of you have said – we were very vulnerable during those years -But clearly we have made lifelong friends and that is really what matters.

Bonnie C

June 1, 2016

Remember Mrs. Putnam “teaching” pre-dance etiquette in Sage living room, usually the Friday night before a dance? It remains a horrible vision, etched in my memory, because she would demonstrate what NOT to do! And, of course, there was the stern reminder that ‘PDA’ would not be tolerated under any circumstances. Little did she know…! – Lois

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And now you all know what Harriet and Barb meant – we day girls did miss out on a lot. But, Harriet, I was overjoyed when I got a B minus!! Ruthie

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Well, Bonnie’s post nearly had me in tears, conjuring up another memory, and now Penni’s has me in stitches! (Sorry to be mixing up email threads here.)

Bonnie, I remember how your mother wrote a most tender and eloquent letter to all her children in the aftermath of JFK’s assassination. You read your copy aloud to some of us and somehow it was profoundly comforting. I think it was the day after Thanksgiving, where we sat in silence at dinner; my tears fell onto my plate of turkey and I couldn’t eat.

Penni, “mummu thingies” lol. Yup, we sure had those. The only reason I can conjure up for them is that they were a carry-over from the days when students used real ink pens and the smocks were to prevent the ink from staining the dinners dresses.

Also, Penni, clearly SOME of you had WAY more fun than I did! Nancy S.

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I think Kathy is already on the way to compiling all our stories on our website and now that we need just such a storehouse, it has been sitting there waiting for us to fill it all these years. Thank you Kathy for your foresight and for sticking with the website. It has been a labor of love.

But once again, I have no recollection of the book fiasco. What I do recall is skipping chapel and when we went wearing our study hall Mumu thingies (did we have study hall smocks or is that something I made up?), under our coats instead of getting dressed. And when cutting chapel, we went up above the stage in assembly hall and hung out there and sometimes the music teacher we tortured (setting up a nude male torso specially lit on his piano in his office) would be playing. The memory of our teasing him, that’s what we thought it was then, I learned later was cruel. That memory shames me.

On a happier note are the memories of sneaking through a broken window into the pool and going skinny dipping in the middle of the night. And fluorescent paint. I painted stars on the ceiling of someone’s room in Hyphen and I think I painted the mask Tabby and I took from the old storeroom we used to raid after lights out (now that phrase brings back a whole gestalt) and hung in our room for two years. What about our old metal beds and getting clean sheets once a week and how many beds did we short sheet over the years?! And I remember going to the Two Way and buying a huge bag of clementines and sitting on the floor with pals around our black metal waste cans and peeling and eating. Ok. Enough. Xo, Penni

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Writing a book…I was thinking about the same thing! Good memories and not so good – people, especially the “kids” today wouldn’t believe it. Did RPI guys really climb up the ivy and party in someone’s room? Being paired up at the dances by height and then having Miss Pickard tap us in the shoulder because we were dancing too close… Wearing stockings that were just shreds of nylon because we had to wear hose to dinner. Trying to ferment cider in our closets and having the bottle explode! The more we talk the more memories flood in. It would be wonderful we could compile all the memories to share among ourselves …but if it did become a book, with just a little artistic license, it could become a best seller _ Kitty

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The “book inquisition” was going to be the subject of my next musing. We were forced to sit in silence until there were confessions. Then the books were found to have fallen behind the backless shelves. There was no apology at all. Wendy

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Hi All,

I am so enjoying reading my own feelings coming thru everyone else’s words.

My mother was a big wig at Emma and a great friend of the Dietels which always made me feel

rather “marginalized” as somehow special when all I wanted was to be just another kid.

How about the “book inquisition” when we were all forced to stay in the homeroom while our rooms were searched

for “stolen” reference books which in fact had all fallen behind the bookshelves?

The senior year harassment was just a continuation of what I always felt was

a totally inept reaction to a budding “flower power” generation.

Id be happy to host an East Coast reunion! Im about 60 minutes north of NYC by train.

Bonnie Hunter Tisi

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A week later, back from Cape Cod where I was visiting a close friend I met only 2 yr after we graduated; and before Memorial Day is officially over, has me still thinking how wonderful it was to see each of you there at our 50th last weekend, and remembering everyone who make up the class of ’66. I also felt refreshed to reconnect, as Suz had said, and feel so greatful to have made the trip. Surprised also to hear so many stories of teenage angst at EW which I think I felt much of my 4 years’ time there. Also thanks again Kathy for keeping us in touch so smoothly. Would love to connect with anyone who plans on visiting Boston anytime. Please get in touch. Happy summer. Love Barb G.

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Hello from another Classmate,

Writing this message was not my plan at the outset, but I just finished cursoring through the wonderful photos (videos too!) from the reunion (thank you, Kathy), and re-reading the memories that have spilled forth via email. Your happy faces and heartfelt words brought inspiration.

I was not particularly happy at EWS. Put an introverted kid from Troy (with marginal self-esteem anyway) into small classrooms with girls from across the US and abroad who seemed much more sophisticated, well-traveled, and assertive than I; add a challenging curriculum; and then demand mandatory in-class participation — and you have a recipe for daily angst. To echo Harriets words, as a day girl, I felt apart from the greater student body and denied the camaraderie that came naturally to those who shared life in the dorms. Even though I lived at home, I wasnt part of the social network of former classmates who went on to public school. Day girl status was a strange netherworld! That said, I’m forever grateful for the education I received at EWS (despite having to suffer through SAM) and there are definitely some memories that bring a smile: Field trips to NYC museums, Twelve Tones practice sessions, the juke box in the caf, Mrs. Jenkins (her sweet, grandmotherly nature even made Latin enjoyable!), Edith Prescott for English, and so on. And I like to think that the rigor faced at EWS helped me deal with the unexpected curve balls that life would throw in the years that followed.

A few years ago I traveled to Troy to attend the funeral of a family friend who happened to be an EWS grad from the 1930s. Trudy Hall was at the funeral home paying her respects. Introducing myself to her, I mentioned that I was a member of the Class of 1966, at which point she raised her eyebrows and remarked: “Oh, THAT class!” (Our rebellious reputation is apparently legendary.) I do remember Mr. Dietels (and in fact most of the administrations) harsh treatment of us, but until reading your many messages, I never knew about Surpik’s incredibly courageous protest; nor did I know about Heidi being placed on social probation in response to her loyal stand. What brave and beautiful tributes in the name of friendship, even at that tender age. You should be so proud. It reminded me of that scene from “Dead Poets Society” in which the character Charlie Dalton is called to the headmasters office to take his punishment (Assume the position!) in the hopes that he will reveal the names of his cohorts in crime. He refuses. Emerging from the office, Charlie –wincing with pain and yet smiling — responds to his anxious buddies (“So what are you going to do, Charlie?!”) saying: “Damn it, Neil. The name’s Nuwanda.

Kudos to all of us. Thank you again for sharing your thoughts so honestly. It really is a reunion on so many levels.

 

Barb (Harrison) Hagler

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Hi to all my EW Classmates

I hadnt planned to write in as Ive always felt in the margins of the Emma Willard experience being a Day Student. As a Day Student, I felt that I didnt belong to the EW community, and I also felt that I didnt belong in my own Troy community with the local kids that I went to elementary school with. I felt that all the Boarders were a strong cohesive group that I wasnt a part of. In my mind I didnt belong in either worlds and I just didnt have any real social life for my four years in high school. Maybe it was my fault, as I know that EW always made efforts to include the Day Students, but still it wasnt the same, at least in my experience.

However, I have come to understand that my parents wanted much more for me than the local school system had to offer, and I know that they were right. I am also surprised to read that many of you felt overly challenged academically as I did. I also wonder why the grading system was so strict?? Was I the only one who got a lot of B minuses ?? However, I also truly believe that the education that we received was amazing and I also appreciate that the campus was so beautiful.

I read with much interest all the messages that many of you wrote. Additionally, I am surprised that many of you were not happy in many ways. From my listed perspective, I had the feeling that everyone was a cohesive group. I want to applaud Surpik for her letter to Mr. Deitel. What a horrible request it was for him to ask us to turn our friends in for smoking and drinking. In general, I think that we were treated without the respect we deserved as thinking young people.

Anyway, Im so happy to read all your messages and to hear about the interesting lives you are leading.

I cant believe that we graduated 50 years ago. Life is going way too fast. But Im having a happy one! I have a wonderful husband, Jay, two wonderful daughters, and three grandchildren and one more on the way. Life is good. -Harriet

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I so enjoyed your musings and your beautiful pictures, of both people and architecture and, Cynthia,I look forward to seeing yours. Thanks to all for sharing! It looks like you were having so much fun. Kathy M, your tunnel video was truly spooky. I do hope asbestos wasnt lagging those overhead pipes but, if it was, I notice they havent been disturbed, which is a good thing!! I have very happy memories of Emma and always recall arriving at school in the morning, having spent almost every night at home on extended phone calls with my boyfriend (who ultimately dumped me some of you may even remember my heartbreak), feeling perennially under-prepared for classes compared to all of you who seemed much more dedicated to your books than I had been. But despite my lack of academic discipline, I, like many of you, feel so grateful for the amazing education that was on offer, especially in the liberal arts sphere, and to the welter of extremely inspiring teachers we had Miss Prescott and Mr Locke topping my personal list, Miss Perkins too, even though I wasnt an artist! It was such a broadening experience and I feel privileged to have been part of it. Oh, I also think in hindsight how very lucky we were to have all the phys ed and beautiful playing fields. I remember loving dance class. Can anyone remember the name of our teacher? This might have been in our freshman year, I cant remember.

If there is a mini reunion, keep me posted. Cape Cod is still on offer. Ruthie

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May 30, 2016

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Thank u Kitty! You said in your email exactly how I would have completed mine if I had not been on a bouncy bus in Iran. Some how it just got sent! I am here immersed in Irans history because of my eduction at EWS. My interest in art and design are from the correlated curriculum I received. Yes. Please let’s get together another time. I will try so hard to be there.

Remember I live half the year in Mexico City. Come and visit. Maggie and Melanie have already come. Big hug to everyone. Diana

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May 29, 2016

Oh Surpik, how touched I am by your email. What courage you showed writing to Bill Dietel (I just corrected myself from Mr. Dietel–the habits formed when young die hard). I only vaguely remember the smoking brouhaha. I do not remember his letter nor his apology although it all sounds so right. Wasn’t it his first year as headmaster? And he was in his midthirties. What did he know about girls then? His own were very young still. Though for those disciplined it was more than a brouhaha. In fact, several times when I have talked for former classmates, they have had to remind me they were expelled! Was I really so wrapped up in myself and my awkwardness and my depression? today, as we rowed a wooden boat from Aquatic Park to the Ferry Building to shop the farmers market and back, a friend asked me whether I still dealt with depression. Do you know I said no!!!!!!!!!! There are benefits to aging. I am so grateful that Surpik and so many of our class became leaders, speaking truth to power. Your, and our job, is clearly not over. Lots of love and hugs all around. Penni

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Oh! Kitty, this just gave me an image of myself and a group of us on a weekend outing into town. I think we were going to shop. I always hated my clothes, was envious of how everyone else seemed to find things that fit and looked cool. Which brings me to an image of myself in Tabby’s and my room junior year, pulling on a pink girdle!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Now doesn’t that tell you something about how far we have come. Although the emergence of that shaping underwear did make me sad. Will we never trust our bodies to be what they are?!Love, Penni

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May 28, 2016

You may already have read these comments about how we felt about our years at EW in the emails that have been circulating, but the thread is interesting and it caused a lot of responses.

Kitty Weatherbee reported someone told our class, “…we were the most rebellious class they had ever seen ( kudos to us!)” and Lois, said it well: “I have fond memories of our class…as individuals and as a united group.” I’m proud to 50 years later read those statements.

It’s all been for the good. For me, I know my parents wanted the best education for me, academically and globally. It was at Emma I met people from far-away states (that til then were just wooden pieces of a jigsaw puzzle I once had), other ethnicities, races, religions and talents (Oh, that girl from Venezuela who could sit down and play any tune you hummed!). And they were so right to do so. I can’t believe how insulated and “ignorant” I was at 15 in New York City. And in our years at EW, even with all the growing pains, we were strong “individuals and a united group.”

The 50th reunion was a terrific reconnection and I am actually thinking it would be wonderful (and just might blow the gargolyes off the buildings) if we showed up in five years as the class with the most participants to ever attend a reunion….yes, that rebellious class of ’66. Think about it and better yet, get it on your long-term calendar.

Hope you find these memories interesting:

Dear EWS friends and fellow love getting travelers,

As I have been following all your responses to our 50th Reunion , I now know that I wish I were coming..to hear your stories and share mine. Unfortunately, I am at this moment in Esfahan.Iran traveling with a small group.. This trip was organized quite a long time ago and the dates could not be changed.

I never was overly enthusiastic about my years at Emma Willard.Coming as a Freshman was hard for me. Heck, I had just wanted to stay home ,go to football games, ride around in convertibles, and be one of the “girls”. Instead, I wore a pink uniform and brown oxfords. Diana McBrier

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Hi Diana- I think many of us felt the same way you did. I know that I just didn’t understand why I was being sent away to school_ I was perfectly happy in New York with my friends and my life. That Emma I was never a particularly good student and seemed more intend on doing things I was told not to do. The reunion this year really was a great get together and you’ll just have to make a future one. It was just great reconnecting with all our wonderful classmates as adults. Hope your trip was a successful one. We all have such interesting things that we’ve done with our lives. Kathy Thompson McCurdy

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I had no idea that some many people felt the same way about EWS as I did – I thought everyone else loved it there! I too felt like I was missing so much fun at home, like Diana. I can still remember when some one ( that old counselor or maybe the headmaster?) stood up in front of our class and told us we were the most rebellious class they had ever seen ( kudos to us!) and that we were there for an academic education and not to socialize. However, I have to admit that the education we got was amazing and without it I probably wouldn’t have the appreciation for art and music that I have today. I hope we all do stay in touch and can get together at a later date.

Here is another confession : when I first arrived at EWS, since I was from from Ohio, I felt like a real hayseed compared to all you sophisticated Eastern girls. I think we were much more sensitive and vulnerable than we let on. Kitty Weatherbee Wildman

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True confessions after all these years:

EW was a time of emotional turmoil for me. Even though it was my choice to go away (my local school offered nothing to equal the smorgasbord of art and music that EW did) I was terribly homesick. Making up for what my education had lacked thus far, I was immediately in over my head. Six majors and five minors were what I remember barely surviving my first (sophomore year. And my reserved nature combined with my visual, non-verbal approach to life didn’t help me socially. When I forgot to sign out for my first weekend home, Miss Somebody-whose-name-I’ve-blocked, who was our housemother in Kellas/Hyphen, greeted me on my return with “YOU forgot to sign out!” (not “Did you have a good time? Welcome back.”) Then when she wrote on my first report home that I was “immature,” I took it to heart! And when one of my classmates saw me washing my face with my hair pulled back, she burst out laughing, “You look like a boy!” Agggh! I took that to heart too!

Since then, life has naturally “handed out many lemons” (as well as lemonade) that make those early slights seem ridiculously trivial. And like Kathy said, the education we got was amazing. By contrast, college was a disappointment freshman year. I almost think I could have skipped college and gone straight into my chosen field – any one of us could have done the same, I am sure.

Being with those of you who attended the reunion and remembering those of you who could not make it has filled me with such tenderness for the girls we were and admiration for the women we have become. And I got the impression Emma is doing much better in the happiness department for the students who are there now.

Let’s continue our albeit-tenuous-EW-connection for what it is worth! Love to all, Nancy S

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It is hard enough to be an adolescent…but boarding school can be really tough. It is the perfect environment for thinking you alone are sad! Some kids looked too “cool” to be in pain. Little did we know. Jane W

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A different perspective to all this. I was sent away to boarding school when I was three and a half!!, and was effectively institutionalised until I left Emma in 1966, so for 14 years, I spent the majority of my life in school. Did I like it. I had no choice, I had to, and in the end, it became better than being at home!! Et voila!! Julia Scott-Barrett

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I am amazed that so many people were not happy at Emma Willard. I was not happy either. As some of you expressed: I wanted to be home and get to do what other kids did. The education was superlative but it took a long time to get over the resentment and appreciate the gift.

I first had to stop judging peoples outsides by my insides. I truly believed you all knew something I did not know and were happy. I also believed that I was sent away because I was too much trouble at home. This growing up thing is really difficult–I think I have decided that I simply am not going to grow up. I am happy now. I appreciate the gift now and I truly wish I had been able to make it to the reunion. There just happens to a little girl here who needs me not to be far away at present. Sending my best to each and every one of you–Heather Henderson Mewhinney

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Wow! This is fascinating. Of course I think we all knew of some girls who hated Emma, but Im very surprised by some of the revelations. It was my choice to go to Emma, and other than a little initial homesickness I really liked it. I know that a number in our class left after sophomore year, others after junior year, but then they keep in touch and even attend reunions. Id love to learn how and when their feelings towards the school changed. Maybe they hated the school, but as time passed had fond memories of the friendships? Keep the stories coming! I can tell we need another reunion soon! Wendy Dominick

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With recent musings and memories of EW, I thought I would contribute and that you might enjoy the attached letter I received from Marjorie Pickard one week before we returned to school for our senior year. Needless to say, it sent my parents in to a frenzy…and, of course, I was overwhelmed and probably less than enthusiastic about starting my senior year. I was not the best student, but my worst fear was confronting the academic thrashing I knew was waiting for me as soon as I unpacked in Sage. As it turns out, my parents were understanding and supportive, as I dreaded making the appointment! Many years later, we laughed over the purpose and tone of the letter, which they kept as a reminder that the world would not, and did not, come to an end!

With few exceptions, my academic achievements at EW were not stellar, but surprisingly I was exceedingly well prepared for college. Attending EW was not necessarily a choice. My sister was in the class of ’63 and both of my parents went to boarding schools. It just was understood that at that time, EW would give me the best opportunity and education. And, it did. It was either EW or Dana Hall. I’m so glad I made the right choice.

Not all life experiences are perfect, but I can honestly say I have fond memories of our class…as individuals and as a united group. Though the idea of tackling Latin, Geometry & Physics still makes me break out in a cold sweat, I continue to smile when reviving that which made us laugh. It was a time and place that we shared, the good and the bad, the happy and the sad.

I’m developing a list of the ‘smiles’, and possibly some ‘frowns’. Stay tuned!

Have a wonderful and safe Memorial Day weekend. – Lois Paull

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