1940’s Teachers Remembered

Submitted by: Lawrence Seeger, Class of 1945

It’s been a long time since the early 1940's when I was attending Junior High School and Del Rio High School, but I still remember some of the dedicated faculty members who guided me through those years.  One person who made an indelible impression on me (several of those impressions were on my rear end) was the Junior High principal, Mr. Brown...known to us as "Willie B."  He meted out justice with his paddle indiscriminately but always fairly.  In later years at a class reunion I asked him if he remembered me. His joking comment was that he never forgot the backsides that he paddled.  The system dictated that male students could choose between detention hall or a lick from his paddle.   The girls had only one choice: detention hall.

Some of the other teachers I remember: Miss Stinson, who taught English Literature.  I recall that she would sometimes hold class on the front lawn of the high school; we read Shakespeare while sitting on the grass under the shade of the big pecan trees.  And two of my Spanish teachers: Johnnie Stewart and Mrs. Nellie Freeman Knight.  One of them, I recall, told us we couldn't learn Spanish unless we could trill an "r."  She called it "shooting a machine gun" because of the sound she made when demonstrating this.  I also remember my Chemistry and Physics teacher, Mrs. Lee.  In retrospect, we were fortunate to have her; she was a graduate of M.I.T. whose husband was stationed at Laughlin Air Force Base.  She had a knack for making her subject matter clear to us. And I remember Coach Jimmy Jacks who coached football and taught Civics.  And there was Mrs. Barnett who taught Geometry and Algebra; she did such a good job teaching me Plane Geometry that I ambitiously signed up for Trigonometry...I dropped Trig like a hot potato after the first class.

Lastly, one of my favorite faculty members was Superintendent Drury Woods.  He was a very congenial man...always had a smile for everyone....made you feel good just to talk to him.

There were, of course, other teachers, but the years have dimmed my memories of them.  I have NO negative recollections of my Del Rio High School teachers and would like to say that in my later career as a teacher they served as guides for me in relating to my students.  I just hope that my former students hold me in the same esteem that I do MY former teachers.

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Last Updated ( Thursday, 09 June 2011 )