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Libbie

"The Oaks" Nursery School

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This is just a shot in the dark, but I'm wondering if any HAIF members attended "The Oaks" preschool in the 1950s (and I think it still existed in the same spot, but under a different name, through the sixties). It was was on, or close to, the 3000 block of Rosedale, a stone's throw from the University of Houston (I remember that detail because one day my father, on his way from teaching at U. of H. to pick me up, spotted a toddler standing by the railroad track, surmised, correctly, that she had wandered away from the school, and came to get me with the little girl on his hip--averting a tragedy.  If something like that happened today ... ).

 

We children could see the railroad track from the playground. The school was, I believe, in the home of the owner/director. I even remember it had a flowering pomegranate tree at the front gate.  Teachers I remember are Mrs. Campbell (or as I called her at age 3, Mrs. Camel),  Miss Vaugn, and (I think) a Mrs. Herbst. The school was for children aged three to six.

 

I know that it was still in existence in the late '60s because around the age of 18 I stumbled upon it, recognized it, went in and looked at the playground, and was surprised that the playground equipment I remembered as huge was, in fact, tiny--as befitted a school for pre-schoolers. It had a different name then, which I don't remember.

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Posted (edited)

I found it! It's to the left (east) of and on the campus of St. Mary's Catholic Church, 3006 Rosedale. It looks just as I remember it from early childhood. I remember the upstairs classrooms upstairs and a downstairs front room where we waited for our mothers to pick us up. The railroad track is no longer there, but the bump where it used to be is visible (The bump extends across town as far north as McGowan and beyond,  running parallel to Velasco Street, looking like what it probably is: a buried railroad track--but those are musings for another day). 

Locating the old Oaks Nursery School building means nothing in the grand scheme of things, but I loved finding it, photographing it, and taking a mental stroll through it as I channeled 

my three-year-old self for a few minutes.

 

image.png.fefffc5a5638d7626608fb4b04ac1a24.png

 

3006 Rosedale, Houston

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by Libbie
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I didn't go to Oaks, but I attended the 6th. grade at St. Mary's in 1958, when they had a school.

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6 hours ago, Earlydays said:

I didn't go to Oaks, but I attended the 6th. grade at St. Mary's in 1958, when they had a school.

 

The oaks was still there in 1958, when I was in second grade at Montrose elementary. My mother re-enrolled me in their after-school program  because she went back to work as a public school substitute. Most of my same teachers were there. I guess you were a one of the big kids I may have seen out of the corner of my eye, next door at St. Mary's. I'd be interested in knowing when St. Mary's acquired the Oaks building, and what they do with it (Sunday school? Youth activities? All-purpose building?) now.

 

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On 5/3/2019 at 12:21 AM, Libbie said:

The railroad track is no longer there, but the bump where it used to be is visible (The bump extends across town as far north as McGowan and beyond,  running parallel to Velasco Street, looking like what it probably is: a buried railroad track--but those are musings for another day). 

@Libbie, I think that the railroad track has been converted into a hike-and-bike trail (Columbia Tap Rail Trail).
Thanks for sharing your recollections.

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Posted (edited)

Yes, Dbigtex56, as I visualize it, I believe you're  right. The part of it that I pass most days looks very inviting, yet perceptively like a buried train track. It was, of course, alive and kicking in the '50s, along with the trains that excited us pre-schoolers at every recess and attracted the toddler who slipped out and went to stand by it: "... one day my father, on his way from teaching at U. of H. to pick me up, spotted a toddler standing by the railroad track, surmised, correctly, that she had wandered away from the [Oaks] school, and came to get me with the little girl on his hip--averting a tragedy."

I remember thinking, at age three-nearly-four, that the child my father brought back was quite a baby (not a big girl like me) to have done such a preposterous thing as to sneak out of the school and go stand by the railroad track. Now, from the vantage point of late middle age, I think she was pretty crafty, taking advantage of a moment when the teachers were asleep at the switch.

Edited by Libbie

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