Niagara Gazette

Columns

March 18, 2013

HIGGS: A lesson on city schools built in the 1900s

(Continued)

Niagara Gazette — In May of 1953 when Miss Isabel LeFort was principal the school celebrated 50 years. Over 200 former students and teachers attended including three of the original teachers from 1903. One of them, Miss Rosalie M. Martin, became the first vice principal at Gaskill Junior High School when it opened in 1931. It was in July 1972 when Doug was due to enter the sixth and final year of elementary school that we moved to Ashland Avenue. This was not the main reason for the move but it would have been nice to have his school just down the street. However, it was also the year the Board of Education decided to close the school and build the Harry F. Abbott central school which opened that September and he spent one year there before moving on to South Junior High School. More on this school later.

Many other occupants moved in and out of the former Ashland Avenue School starting in 1979 when it appeared as an office building. Center City Neighborhood Development, the APA employment Agency and Cubello Real Estate started it off. Then the American Red Cross occupied the first floor for many years with Healthy Heart Program of Niagara County on the second floor. In 2002, the Niagara Wellness Council and Opportunities Unlimited had quarters there and from 2005 to the present it has been the Refuge Temple of Christ.

The 1900’s saw many other school constructions as Niagara Falls continued to grow. We shall continue our educational journey. Stay tuned.

Norma Higgs serves with the Niagara Beautification Commission and Niagara Falls Block Club Council.

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