Haunting chalkboard drawings, frozen in time for 100 years, discovered in Oklahoma school

A friend of mine sent this Washington Post article  to me today.

In my book, Baby Boomer Reflections: Eighteen Special Years Between 1946 and 1964, I’ve written about our baby boomer education, including our elementary school experiences between the years 1952 and 1958, if you’re a leading edge boomer. That was sixty-three years ago, so I’m not surprised that the following images, un-retouched from 1917, are quite similar to what I remember when I attended “Frogtown Elementary,” a four room Pennsylvania elementary school. After all, 1917 was only thirty-five years earlier then.

Please enjoy these amazing images, and be sure to share them with your Facebook friends. Now, here’s the back story, and you should share it with your kids and grandkids …


“Teachers and students scribbled the lessons — multiplication tables, pilgrim history, how to be clean —  nearly 100 years ago. And they haven’t been touched since.

This week, contractors removing old chalkboards at Emerson High School in Oklahoma City made a startling discovery: Underneath them rested another set of chalkboards, untouched since 1917.

“The penmanship blows me away, because you don’t see a lot of that anymore,” Emerson High School Principal Sherry Kishore told the Oklahoman. ‘Some of the handwriting in some of these rooms is beautiful.’


The chalkboards being removed to make way for new whiteboards are in four classrooms, according to the Oklahoma City Public School District.

A spokeswoman said the district is working with the city to ‘preserve the ‘chalk’ work of the teachers that has been captured in time.’

A wheel that apparently was used to teach multiplication tables appears on one board. ‘I have never seen that technique in my life,’ Kishore told the Oklahoman.


The boards carry not just teachers’ work, but also that of students, and every room has a lesson on pilgrims, according to the district.

‘Their names are here; I don’t know whether they were students in charge that day that got to do the special chores if they were the ones that had a little extra to do because they were acting up,’ Kishore said. ‘But it’s all kinds of different feelings when you look at this.'”

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If you’re interested in more of our baby boomer history, please go to Amazon and get my book, either in print or on Kindle.

One thought on “Haunting chalkboard drawings, frozen in time for 100 years, discovered in Oklahoma school

  1. I remember the chalk board days. Since I was left handed, I had an awful time doing work on the board. If you were really good, the teacher would honor you by letting you wash the chalk board and clean the erasers. If any of the Danville PA students remember or had Miss Charlotte Deitz who taught Biology, you will recall she wrote every lesson on the chalk board and the students copied her information onto their study tablets and just memorized.


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