Sunday, April 29, 2018

Family Milestones Galore – Yet the Scrapbooks Make Us Speculate About the Salyers Family's Time in Richmond

In the fall of 1927, for the first time in their lives, the three younger Salyers children registered for school somewhere other than their hometown of Carrollton, Kentucky. They had moved with their parents to Richmond, where their big brother Bob was attending Eastern Kentucky State Teachers College. Twins Mary Alice and Jim entered Madison High for their senior year, and little brother David entered seventh grade in the school's junior high division.

Based on its place in a scrapbook, the photo below may have been taken soon after the move from Carrollton to Richmond. The Salyers brothers are standing in front of a large sign or billboard. All I can make out in the sign is a string of pearls. Knowing this bunch, I'm sure there's a joke involved.
As they did in Carrollton, the boys were involved in sports. This article includes David as a member of the winning Smith-Ballard community baseball team. Other clippings tell us he played basketball on the junior high school Freshmen Mountain Lions.
Here we learn of David's involvement with the school newspaper. All four of the Salyers siblings were journalists in high school and college.
I am surprised that the scrapbooks for this period don't include much about Mary Alice or Jim and their senior year activities, not even graduation pictures. Because the twins were new in the community and the school, knowing they would be moving on to college the following fall, did they not get involved in school activities? It's hard to imagine them just going through the motions, but I've found nothing about their high school senior year.

While the family lived in Richmond, Mary Alice apparently visited Cumberland Falls. A high school field trip? A senior trip? A church group get-away? There are no hints in the scrapbook. Her mother, Sarah, wrote above the picture only her daughter's initials and the location.
In the fall of 1928, Mary Alice and Jim enrolled at Eastern. The scrapbooks include little about their freshman year, but a bit of research turned up this image of the masthead in the college newspaper published on Feb. 2, 1929. Mary Alice is listed as the paper's feature editor – pretty good for a freshman! Her big brother Bob is the paper's editor in chief.
 Eastern Kentucky University, "Eastern Progress - 2 Feb 1929" (1929). Eastern Progress 1928-1929. 8.
At the end of that school year, Bob received his diploma from Eastern and soon joined the full-time work force. He got a job with Moore Stove Company (where his dad worked) and moved to the company's home office in Joliet, Illinois. He soon became the company's advertising manager.
Robert King Salyers in Richmond, Ky., on college graduation day 1928
The Salyers family lived in Richmond for two years. During that time, they experienced many of life's traditional milestones: David going to junior high; Mary Alice and Jim's senior year of high school and their first year of college; Bob's graduation from Eastern. Yet the scrapbooks yield little information about that time – and nothing about parents Sarah and Will. The opposite is true of their time in Lexington. Multiple scrapbooks include pictures, letters, clippings, and hand-written comments. Future posts will share stories about the whole family during the Lexington years, when David was a student at Henry Clay High and Mary Alice and Jim were at the University of Kentucky.

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