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December 16 Classic Photo: “Bookin’ It”

The Classic Photo from the December 16 edition of The Nashville News, was “Bookin’ It”. The photo shows six school-aged children, lined up on a stage and holding dictionaries. Irvington historian Ralph McTall called us to tell us about the photo.

The six children are the winners of the Washington County Dictionary Contest. This photo was dated March 17, 1966, but McTall stated that the contests had been going on far longer.

“It started with a spelling contest in ‘40, a dictionary contest in ‘41, and then later, an arithmetic contest,” said McTall.

The contests were organized and held by Kenneth Freeman, the county superintendent of schools, equivalent to the regional superintendent today. The contests went on a long time, McTall said,. “He had those through the ‘40s and ‘50s and ‘60s and ‘70s. I don’t know when they stopped exactly.”

The children shown are, FROM LEFT, Carolyn Sturgeon, from Richview School; Ann Emge, from Nashville School; Leslie Russell, from Irvington Grade School (“She was one of my students,” said McTall.); Elaine Frese, from St. Ann’s in Nashville; Mike Muenter, from Hoyleton Lutheran School; and Bonnie Fark, from Hoyleton School.