Scheffer Elementary School, Saint Paul, Minnesota

 My Life, My History, My Schools
By Don Taylor

Photo of Don Taylor circa 1955.
“Donnie” (Larson) Taylor  circa 1955

I’m not positive why we moved from Hastings to Saint Paul, MN. I know that my mom was working as a nurse’s aide when we lived in Hastings and she was working for another hospital when we lived at the Capital Apartments in Saint Paul. I think she was a nurse’s aide at Gillette State Hospital for Crippled Children, but I’m not positive. My grandmother was working at the time also, but I don’t recall where.  I think it might have been a laundry. My mom took a bus to work every day and I believe my grandma walked.  The two of them tried to make sure one of them was home whenever I was home.

My Memories

Photo of Sylvia Larson (later Matson) in nurse's uniform - circa 1955
Sylvia Larson (later Matson) in nurse’s uniform – circa 1955

I don’t remember any great excitement about my first day in school when I began kindergarten at Scheffer Elementary. It was just something that a kid did. I do remember that the school was nearby, maybe three blocks away or so. I also remember it had a huge playground but there was something dark and foreboding about the school building itself. Of course, I walked to school. On most days, I walked with other children from the apartment building I lived in; sometimes I walked with kids from the buildings nearby. I don’t recall ever having a parent walking me to school. I don’t recall school crossing guards or anything like that. Kids just sort of took care of themselves in the mid-1950s.

That winter, somehow, I attracted the attention of a bully named Cynthia. I didn’t do anything to her, but in true bully fashion, she began rubbing my face in the snow whenever she saw me.  I was in kindergarten and she was in second or third grade. Much bigger than I was. I grew afraid of Cynthia. She was the bane of my existence. I told my mother and my grandmother about it, but they both worked and neither were about to intercede. They talked with one of the neighbor kids, a fifth grader I think, who agreed to keep an eye out for me and step in if I was getting picked on.  I think that worked for a while, but then I was walking somewhere alone and Cynthia spied me. She rubbed my face in the snow again. I came home cold and wet, the tears and melted snow indistinguishable on my face.  I had been taught by my mom and grandma to never, never ever, hit a girl.  My grandmother told me that this girl, who was acting like a bully and like a boy, needed to be responded to like she was a boy. She gave me permission to smack her. A few days later Cynthia saw me again, knocked me down and began mushing my face into the snow.  I round-housed her with a big one in the face. She stopped for an instant, surprised, even shocked, then her face turned to anger. I had really angered her. I think I got the worst “snow mashing” of my life that day. She ground my face into the snow and ice with all her might. The good news is, however, that was the last time she pushed my face in the snow. I saw her many times before spring arrived and the snow piles vanished, but she left me alone after that.

Scheffer Elementry School

Photo of Scheffer Elementary School - Saint Paul, MN
Scheffer Elementary School – Saint Paul, MN

Scheffer Elementary was an old, forbidding beast of a school when I attended it in 1955. It was built about 1900 and felt old. It had large windows with a top portion that could be opened to provide ventilation in the summer. But in the winter, the windows were drafty beyond belief. I remember two floors but I don’t remember a top floor containing dormers. Scheffer was built without a gym, as was typical in its day, but did have a large playground outside. That playground was Como Playground, which was the first city playground created in 1903.  Before Como Playground, parks were typically public squares and not active places for children. I only attended Scheffer for the one Kindergarten year, so I don’t have many recollections but, looking at photos activated a memory. Scheffer Elementary was demolished in 1970 and replaced by a Scheffer Recreation Center.

Other people recall the school’s bell as being significant. I don’t recall it. The school’s bell has been preserved and is now in the current Scheffer Recreation Center. The center of today has a baseball field, two softball fields, the center building housing indoor facilities.

A Memory Activated – Baking!

Photo of Kiindergarteners learning bread baking, Scheffer Elementary - c. 1950
Learning to bake bread at Scheffer Elementary

While I was researching Scheffer Elementary School I ran across an amazing photo that triggered memories. The photo was a St. Paul Dispatch and Pioneer Press photo from 1950 of kindergarteners at Scheffer Elementary learning about baking bread. I saw the photo and gasped out loud, “Wow! I remember that.” I remember the tall paper chef hats and making bread. Before I saw that photograph, I would not have remembered when or where it happened but I would have remembered having had a very similar experience. It is so fantastic to see the photo.  Thank you, Minnesota Historical Society, for allowing the photo to be shared.

The Future

Plan for next generation recreation center.

The City of Saint Paul is planning and designing a new Scheffer Recreation Center to replace the existing 1970’s building. Yikes! Talk about something making you feel old.  Not only has my first school been demolished and replaced, that replacement building is undergoing replacement and should be gone in the next couple years.  It is so ironic that the next generation Scheffer Recreation Center, planned for 2018-2019 will have a gymnasium, a walking track, and other sports features that the original school did not have.

Further Research

Research the Capital Apartments that were behind the Capital during the 1950s. 

Sources

  • Internet: Saint Paul // Departments // Parks & Recreation // Design & Construction / Current Projects // Scheffer Recreation Center Project – (see: https://www.stpaul.gov/departments/parks-recreation/design-construction/current-projects/scheffer-recreation-center-project – accessed 23 Jan 2017.  Also see CAC Meeting #2 Presentation
  • Internet: Saint Paul HistoricalKindergarten children baking bread at Scheffer School – ID: 433. – Date: 1950 – Image courtesy Minnesota Historical Society.
  • Internet: Saint Paul HistoricalScheffer School – ID: 431 – Date: c. 1900 – Image courtesy of Minnesota Historical Society.
  • Photos of “Donnie” and “Sylvia” are from the “Don Taylor personal photos collection.” Photographer unknown.

 

Enlistment Papers – Enoch Mannin – 29 Aug 1863

Amanuensis Monday
Brown Research 2017

Transcription by Don Taylor – 28 Jan 2017

[Page 1 of 3]

Mannin, Enoch
Reg’t:  Ky

[Page 2 of 3 – Center (rotated 90 degrees right)]

Enoch Mannin
Volunteered at Olive Hill, KY
August 29 1863 by N. B. Lateral
45 Regiment of Ky vol,

[Page 2 of 3 – Left side]

DECLARATION OF RECRUIT.
Enoch Mannin desiring to volunteer
as a Soldier in the Army of the United States, for the term of one year, Do declare,
That I am forty-four years and ___ months of age;
that I have never been discharged from the United States service on account of disability or by sentence of a
courts-martial, or by order before the expiration of a term of enlistment; and I know of no impediment to my
serving honestly and faithfully as a soldier for one year
given at Olive Hill KY
The 29 day of August
1863

Witness: James Gavin

– Enoch Mannin
Volunteered at Olive Hill, KY

August 29 1863 by N. B. Lateral
45 Regiment of Ky vol,

[Page 3 of 3]

VOLUNTEER ENLISTMENT
STATE OF [EAGLE SEAL] COUNTY OF
Kentucky                                 Carter

I Enoch Mannin born in Bath County
in the State of Kentucky aged Forty Four  years,
and by occupation, a farmer Do hereby acknowledge to have voluteer-
ed the twenty-ninth day of Aug. 1863, to serve as a
soldier in the army of the united States of America, for the period of
one year, unless sooner discharged by proper authority: Do also agree
to accept such bounty, pay, rations, and clothing, as are, or may be, established by law for
volunteers. And I Enoch Mannin do solemnly swear, that
I will bear true faith and allegiance to the United States of America, and that
I will serve them honestly and faithfully against all their enemies or opposers whomsoever;
and that I will observe and obey the orders of the President of the United States, and the
orders of the officers appointed over me, according to the Rules and Articles of War.

Sworn and subscribed to at Olive Hill by
Enoch Mannin
this 29 day of Aug. 1863
Before N B Literal

I CERTIFY, ON HONOR, That I have carefully examined the above named Volunteer, agreeably to
the General Regulations of the Army, and that in my opinion his is free from all bodily defects and mental
infirmity, which would, in any way, disqualify him from performing the duties of a soldier.

Joseph Ghobue
Examining Surgeon

I CERTIFY, ON HONOR, That I have minutely inspected the Volunteer Enoch Mannin
previously to his enlistment, and that is was entirely sober when enlisted; that, to the best of my judgement
and belief, he is of lawful age; and that in accepting him as duly qualified to perform the duties of an able-
bodied soldier, I have strictly observed the Regulations which govern the recruiting service. This soldier has
Black eyes, Black hair, dark complexion is 5 feet 6 inches high.

N. B. Literal
45 Regiment Kentucky Volunteers,
Recruiting Officer

Biography: Nancy Branch Pankey (1797-1865)

Howell-Darling-2017 Research

By Don Taylor

It is expedient to research direct line ancestors, so we often neglect siblings of our ancestors, particularly our distant ancestors’ siblings.  Often, to gain insight into some of our ancestors, it is helpful to research the friends, associates, and neighbors (FAN) of our ancestors. However, before we spend time with the FANs, we should research the other family members of our ancestors to uncover any potential clues there.  Also, such research can uncover FAN relationships we can use elsewhere in our research.

I had reached something of an impasse in my research of Martha (Cannon) Pankey. I knew that Martha had at least seven children, including 2nd great-grandmother Caroline M. A. Pankey, but very little about her life otherwise. To try to understand her life I decided to research one of her daughters, Nancy Branch Pankey. 

List of Grandparents

  • Grandfather: James Dallas Howell
  • 1st Great-grandfather: Peter Fletcher Howell
  • 2nd Great grandmother: Caroline M. A. Pankey
  •             Sister of Caroline M. A. Pankey: Nancy Birch Pankey

Nancy Branch Pankey (1796-1865)

Birth

Birth records are notoriously difficult to find that prove the birth date of an individual and Nancy is no different.  The 1860 Census indicates that she (Nana) is 63 years old, suggesting a birthdate between 2 June 1796 and 1 June 1797.[i] However, the 1850 Census indicates she (Nancy B) is 56 years old, suggesting a birthdate between 2 June 1793 and 1 June 1794.[ii] The Virginia Deaths and Burial Index indicates a birth year of 1796. FHL film 31989 should show the basis of the index entry and I should order it to confirm the date suggested. I prefer 1796 as her birthdate both because of the deaths index and because there are more days between June 2nd and December 31st than from January 1st to June 1st.  She was the second known daughter of Thomas Armstrong Pankey and Martha Cannon.

Childhood

We know nothing of Nancy’s childhood. She was the second child of seven children. She grew up during the challenging period between the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812.

Marriage

She married Edward Pankey on 13 Jan 1818 in Cumberland County, Virginia.[iii] That would have made her 22 years-old when she married the 31 years-old Edward. Whenever I see a marriage wherein two people have the same surname I always wonder about other possible relationships, particularly when the name is uncommon and the population pool is small  — Could Edward and Nancy have been cousins?  With a surname middle name (Branch), could she have married a Pankey previously and be on a second marriage? Maybe other records will shed light onto this family.

Adulthood

Edward and Nancy Branch Pankey had ten children. They were:

  1. Martha Ann (c. 1819 – 1896)
  2. Keziah Quinley (1822 – 1861)
  3. John Thomas (c. 1823 – 1851)
  4. James Edward (1826 – 1897)
  5. Elizabeth (c. 1829 – ?)
  6. Nancy Jane (c. 1831 – 1898)
  7. Sarah Francis (c. 1834 – 1861)
  8. Peter Perino (c. 1836 – 1915)
  9. Stephen Lafayette (1836 – 1886)
  10. William Calhoun (c. 1839 – c. 1892)

The 1850 Census finds the family in Henry County, Virginia. Although the 1850 census does not show relationships between individuals in a household, it does show who was living in the household. It shows seven of Edward and Nancy’s children, John, Elizabeth, Nancy, Sarah, Stephen, Peter, and William, living with them in 1850.

The 1860 Census finds the Pankey family remarkably intact. Still in Henry County, Virginia, with Edward and Nana (Nancy) are five of the children; Elizabeth, Jane, Stephen, Peter, and William. I think that Sarah is also with them. There is a Sarah Griffith in the household with two children.  That Sarah is the right age to be Edward and Nancy’s daughter, but I’d like to confirm the relationship.

Death

Nancy Branch (Pankey) Pankey died between 19 Nov 1865 and 6 December 1865 in Irisburg, Henry County, Virginia.[iv]  She is buried in the Pankey Cemetery in Irisburg, VA.[v]

As I continue to investigate the Pankey family of the late 1700s to the mid-1800s Virginia, surely other interesting items will arise.

Further Actions / Follow-up

  • Continue investigating the Pankey family of the late-1700s thru the mid-1800s in Virginia.
  • Order FHL film #31989. Review/confirm data regarding Nancy Branch Pankey Pankey’s death.

————- Disclaimer ————-


Endnotes

[i] 1860 Census (A), Ancestry.Com, Edward Pankey – Henry County, Virginia – Page 3, Line 40.

[ii] 1850 Census (NARA), Ancestry.Com, Edward Pankey – Henry County, Virginia. Page 77 – Line 42 & Page 78 – Lines 1-8.

[iii] Dodd, Jordan, Virginia, Compiled Marriages, 1660-1800, Ancestry.Com, Edward Pankey – Nancy B. Pankey. Cumberland, Virginia – 13 Jan 1818 – accessed 18 Jan 2017.

[iv] Virginia, Deaths and Burials Index, 1853-1917, Ancestry.Com, Nancy Pankey. http://search.ancestry.com/search/collections/FSVirginiaDeath/47321/printer-friendly?new=1.

[v] Find a Grave, Nancy Branch Pankey Pankey – Memorial 92073621. http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=92073621.

Schools I’ve Attended

Those Places Thursday
My History

By Don Taylor

I often see articles and blogs that remind readers to write about their own life. Something that several suggest is to write about schools that you have attended. Most people have a few schools, but I have 15 schools that I have attended.  It is more of a book rather than an article or two. Looking back, I have attended seven elementary schools, one junior high school, three high schools, and four colleges. So, I thought I’d examine the school’s history and see what I can remember of my attending.

  • 1955 – Scheffer Elementary[1], St. Paul, MN– Kindergarten.
  • 1956 – Emerson Elementary, Minneapolis, MN – 1st grade.
  • 1957 – Cambridge Elementary, Cambridge, MN – 2nd grade.
  • 1957 – Franklin Elementary, Anoka, MN – 2nd grade.
  • 1958 – Parkview Elementary, Fridley, MN – 3rd, 4th, & 5th grades.
  • 1960 – Spring Lake Park Elementary, Spring Lake Park, MN – 5th & 6th grades.
  • 1961 – Elizabeth Hall Elementary, Minneapolis, MN 6th grade.
  • 1962 – Jordan Junior High School, Minneapolis, MN 7th, 8th, & 9th grades.
  • 1965 – Osse0 High, Osseo, MN – 10th, 11th, & 12th grades.
  1. 1966 – Billings Senior High, Billings, MT – part of 10th grade.[2]
  2. 1967 – Mumford High, Detroit, MI – part of 11th grade?
  • 1968 – Graduated from Osseo High School

————-

  • 1974 – Chapman University, Orange, California (Navy PACE)
  • 1976 – Chaminade University, Honolulu, Hawaii (Navy PACE)
  • 1981 – Anoka Ramsey Community College, Coon Rapids, MN
  • 1984 – Metropolitan State University, St. Paul, MN

————-

For each of the schools I attended, I plan to look at the school’s history and see what memories I can jog loose about me and my attending that school.  My guess is that most of the elementary schools that I attended are now gone.

————- Disclaimer ————-

 

ENDNOTES

[1] If you had asked me before, I would have said I attended Schaeffer Elementary. Researching for this article I learned it was Scheffer Elementary. I double checked my DD Form 398 – Statement of Personal History. I indicated Schaeffer on mine when I completed it in 1968. Also, the form only included spaces for five schools; I had to continue on another page.

[2] I will need to look closer at this school.  For some reason. I think I went to Central High in Billings but a quick Internet search indicated that would be a Catholic school.  I am sure I attended a public school when living in Billings.

Ancestor Biography – Martha Cannon (1764-?)

Howell-Darling-2017 Research

Cannon/Pankey/Howell Line

By Don Taylor

Getting to know female ancestors who lived before 1840 is always a challenge. Researching Martha Cannon, the wife of Thomas Armstrong Pankey, is no exception.

Certainly, her family relationships are somewhat confusing. In Pollock vs Pollock[1], it states several times that Martha is the ½ sister of Sarah Pollock. That clearly indicates that Martha’s family is complex. On page 36 of the suit, Adam Calhoon says he married “Henrietta Pankey, Daughter of Thomas Pankey and Martha Cannon sister of William Liggon.”  There is also a reference in the Enquirer regarding Roderick Payne and Thomas Ligon who appear to also have a familial relationship with Martha.

Clearly, I need to research Sarah Pollock and her ancestry.  Likewise, I need to learn the relationship with William Liggon, is he a full brother or a half-brother.  If he is a full brother, how did Martha acquire the surname of Cannon? Was there a first marriage for Martha or was Cannon a name adopted because of the surname of a stepfather?  There are many possibilities and I need to zero in on a likely scenario.

Howell/Darling – Ancestor #35

List of Grandparents

  • Grandfather: James Dallas Howell
  • 1st Great-grandfather: Peter Fletcher Howell
  • 2nd Great-grandmother: Caroline M. A. Pankey
  • 3rd Great-grandmother: Martha Cannon

Martha Cannon (1764-?)

Birth

Martha was probably born in Virginia about 1764.[2]  Some researchers indicate that her mother was Caroline Rolfe, although I have not been able to confirm that.

Childhood

Certainly, Martha grew up during interesting times. The Declaration of Independence was signed when she was 12-years-old. The Revolutionary war ended in 1783, when she was 19 years old. Certainly, she would have known many young men who served in the war.

Marriage

Martha Cannon married Thomas Armstrong Pankey in Goochland County Virginia on 1 November 1785.

Martha Cannon married Thomas Armstrong Pankey in Goochland County Virginia on 1 November 1785.[3], [4] Both Thomas and Martha were probably about 21 years old.

Adulthood

Book Cover - Marriages of Goochland County Virginia 1733-1815

1792 – It is very odd, but it appears that Thomas and Martha may have gone seven years before the birth of their first child, Mary Pankey, who was born between 1792 and 1796. This seems to be just way too long, so I’m sure I need to further research the family.

1796 – Their second child Nancy Branch Pankey was born.

1799 – Their first son, Thomas Armstrong Pankey [Junior] was born.

1805 – Daughter Elizabeth K. Pankey was born.

1807 – Son Francis Pankey was born.

1811 – Daughter Caroline M. A. Pankey was born.

Thomas and Martha had another child, Henrietta, whose birthdate I do not know.

We know that Thomas Pankey died in January 1829, however, we do not know if Martha preceded or succeeded him in death nor do we know where either is buried.

There is so much more research that needs to be done with this family line.

Further Actions / Follow-up

  • Research Sarah Pollock and her ancestry.
  • Research William Liggon and his relationship with Martha Cannon.
  • Research Martha’s potential mother, Caroline Rolfe.
  • Research Martha’s life period between marriage (1785) and 1st child (1792).
  • Further research Thomas Pankey’s death and burial.
  • Further research Martha Cannon’s death and burial.

————- Disclaimer ————-
Family Tree DNA - Family Finder & Population Finder


Endnotes

[1] Virginia, Powhatan, Chancery Causes, 1782-1938. No. 1831-015; Page 02 of 109.

[2] My Heritage Names, My Heritage, Nancy Branch Pankey, 1797-1865. https://www.myheritage.com/names/nancy_pankey.

[3] Bentley, Elizabeth Petty, indexer., Virginia, Marriage Records, 1700-1850 (Baltimore, Tyler’s Quarterly, MD), Ancestry.Com, Page 202 – Thomas Pankey – Martha Cannon -. Accessed 14 Dec 2015.

[4] Dodd, Jordan, Virginia, Compiled Marriages, 1660-1800, Ancestry.Com, Thomas Pankey – Martha Cannon. Goochland County, Virginia – 1 Nov 1785. Accessed 14 December 2016.