Miss Rathbun's First Grade Class of 1945

By Nolan W. Bailey


Nolan                                                           Gary Mathews lived next door to Nolan on Roosevelt Drive in the Oak Ridge Subdivision

 A millennium ago, I began school at an elementary school which was just across the street from the old Minden High school.  I think that the year was 1945-46.  At the time my family lived on Roosevelt Drive in the Oak Ridge subdivision on Highway 80 west of downtown Minden.  My father worked at the Louisiana Ordnance Plant as a fireman during the war. 

Here comes my question's.  I remember that my first teacher was a "Miss Rathbun," who I think  had red hair. Heck, its been sixty years, so what do I know (remember).  Does anyone there know more about this teacher, and does anyone remember being in the first grade during 1945, at her school. Even though I can't remember his first name, one of my friends was a little guy who always wore "striped" overalls like a railroad conductor, and he may have worn glasses.  Another was a cute little "blonde" who claimed me as being her "property."  Those were the days...<grin>

Best regards.

Nolan lived on Roosevelt drive around 1943 or 1945. He is all grown up now.

Nolan W. Bailey, Sr.
Rowlett, Texas

If you can read this, thank a teacher.
If you are reading it in English, thank a soldier.

If any of you were in this class, we welcome your comments. Send us a message at MindenMemories@AOL.COM

Pictures would also be appreciated, especially one of the first grade class. Send us a message first so we will be expecting the attachment.


I asked my husband if he remembered a Miss Rathbun being a first grade teacher when he was in elementary school. He didn't think he remembered her, especially since he'd have been in the 3rd or 4th grade by then. However, he asked me is she had red hair! 

The Rathbun family was a respected Minden family and, at one time, lived in the huge white house across from the park on East & West St. and Lewisville Rd. 

Earlene Mendenhall Lyle 

                                                                       More Memories and Questions from Nolan

Thanks!  As I told someone after the first contact. I think that my friend's name (the male) might have been Benny?? Interesting to see the Bonnie and Clyde story one the site. My second cousin, Henderson Jordan, was the sheriff on the posse that ended Bonnie and Clyde's career of crime. I was born within four or five miles of the ambush, and that's where my family returned to after living in Minden after the war years. How many people remember the practices that were held after the war for "air raids?" I can recall everyone having to turn off the lights, even on the cars, and Air Raid Wardens walking around Oak Ridge to check on folks that still had lights on, etc.

Didn't Gary have sisters named Carole and Gail? Whew, I am reaching back sixty years, here...<grin>  I can't even remember if I had "grits for breakfast...<grin>  Does anyone know Martha Wimberly? She was a McEachern (sp?) before marrying Dave Wimberly, a State Trooper living in Minden. Her family lived near us during WWII in Oak Ridge. I think she had a brother named A. C. Oh yes, the Hennigan boys of football fame lived at the foot of the hill...

I guess the highway was 79 instead of 80. I do remember walking to a Samuel's Grocery a few times a a young miscreant...:-)

Warmest regards,


What precious pictures! Thanks so much for sharing them with us. You certainly were a beautiful little boy, and I loved seeing the picture of Gary. When I first knew Gary in high school, I knew him as Millard Mathews. Did you know that, after returning to Minden, Gary bought the house on Roosevelt Dr. next door to the one he lived in as a child? On one of my trips to Minden, I went to Gary's home to visit him. He was a fine man. He's have been in my graduating class if he had not joined the Air Force and left Minden.


Sue McEachern Ford who is a member of this list, is the younger sister of Martha McEachern Wimberly. A. C. Was their brother. They were living near Flo and I on the cross streets off Myers on Goat Hill where we lived. They were living there when Martha and Dade Wimberly married.

Corene King Ingals




   Re Nolan Baileys remembrance.  I was in Miss Rathburn's first grade class and she did have red hair.  I thought she was the most beautiful wonderful teacher ever.
Somewhere I have a picture of the whole class.  I will try to remember where it is and get it posted.  My name was Barbara Baten at that time.  I married Max Rudd another Minden graduate.
Barbara Baten Rudd

Great!  Now I know that I'm not senile...well... 

Anyhow, as I may have stated, she and another young teacher would walk us back from the playground together.  As we walked along, they would talk and when they got to something they didn't want the "big ears" to understand, they would spell it.  But, I would remember the letters and ask my mom what they spelled when I got home...  What an "education" for a young squirt... <grin>

Nolan Bailey


 In reading today's Memories, Miss Rathbun turned out to be in my 2nd grade Gertrude Alsobrook.  I loved her.  She was my first grade teacher in 1946/47.  Yep, a long time ago.  Mrs. or Miss Saint was my 2nd grade teacher and Mrs. or Miss Tannehill was in the 3rd.  That's reaching way back. 
Thanks for doing such a good job. 
Mary Ellen Dickerson





Ureka!  I have found it.

As I told a while back, when I attended Miss Rathbun's first grade class in the elementary
across the street from the high school, the students had to have a cloth napkin for lunch time.
Since we didn't own any cloth napkins at home, my mother decided to make her own, which she did--just
like the "Little Red Hen." 

My napkin is around 10.5 inches by 11.5 inches.  Please forgive its condition since it has "survived" for over
sixty years.