Spring Street School in Atlanta stands in what is now midtown. And it does in fact still stand. Not as a school but as the Center for Puppetry Arts. This past week I discovered a Facebook group for alumni and have reconnected with several friends. When I was in Atlanta this morning, I stopped by.
This is the side door, the door we went in every morning. Up those steps my first grade class (Mrs.* Morris) was just to the left. Second grade (Miss* Croxton) was to the right. My kindergarten class (Miss Joyce and Miss Barbara) was in the middle of the hall right across from the principal’s (Mrs. Douglas) office.
[*this was pre-1971]
This is a wide view of the same door, midtown Atlanta peeking out from behind the building. The area where that playground is now used to be covered with an awning. If you look closely at the brick, you can see the outline where the awning was attached. My father would drive down this street, circle around, and then pull up just in front to let us out of his black and white, two-door Oldsmobile Toronado. Then we would sit on top of the picnic tables or play hopscotch until Mrs. Douglas came out to ring the bell, calling us in one class at a time.
This is inside that side door. Mrs. Elyea’s third grade was the door to the left at the bottom of the steps. I made my first, and only, diorama in that class. Through the red double doors at the other end of the building was the cafeteria. The art room was through the doors on the right.
This was the other sixth grade room. I was in Mrs. McIver’s class.
This was the front door of the school. At the end of the day, we came out this door where five or six busses would be lined up waiting to take us home. It’s also where I remember seeing Martin Luther King, Jr. and Coretta Scott King standing to wait for their children.
The parking lot in the foreground used to be the girls’ playground. The parking lot behind it was the boys’ playground. And then beyond that was a lower playground. The interstate (the downtown connector) is to the right.
At the end of recess in fourth grade (Mrs.Baker), I was standing right by this side door (and so on the girls’ playground) when Donzaleigh Abernathy (a classmate) introduced me to Andy Young.
With these slices of the front and the back of the school, it’s almost as if no time had passed at all.
May of 1969. Sixth grade. Inside one of the classrooms–me on the far left. And outside on the steps between playgrounds–me back center.