OAKLAND'S FIRST PUBLIC SCHOOL
Oakland in Early Days (No. 10) by Chas. G. Reed
(Contributed by Oakland Pioneers - No. 26)
When the Carpentier school was finished and turned over to the city, July, 1853, there was a grand celebration and parade of pupils and citizens, who gathered at the foot of Broadway. The pupils led, followed by citizens in carriages, on horseback and on foot. The band consisted of Alfred W. Burrell, who played a drum, which was the only music for the marchers. B. Frank Maloon carried a banner of white muslin on which was the motto: "Our Duty, to Our Country. First, Last and Always." At either corner of the banner was a cord and tassel and those were held by Frank's two younger brothers, Seth and Henry. The procession marched up Broadway to Fourth street and out Fourth to Clay. Upon arriving at the schoolhouse, exercises were held and speeches were made by Sam J. Clarke, Albert W. Burrell. Judge Jas. Lentell and Judge Geo. H. Fogg, all of whom have long since passed away.
Before private schools were established or were well under way, the public schoolhouse became so crowded that some of the older pupils were taken to a building at the northeast corner of Broadway and Fifth street and Franklin Warner was employed to teach them, while Miss Hannah Jayne taught in the new schoolhouse. The teachers succeeding her were: Franklin Warner, Ralza A. Morse, Henry Goble and Henry Hillebrand. About 1860, upon completion of the second schoolhouse, on the west end of the block where the Oakland high school now stands, the Carpentier schoolhouse was abandoned and sold to the First Methodist church. It was moved to the west side of Washington street between Fifth and Sixth and was used as a church under the pastorate of Rev. Chas. E. Rich for several years, and was then moved to the east side of West street just south of Seventh, and used for years as a church by the colored Methodists. It is still standing there, but it is so changed by alterations and additions that it would not be recognized as the same building, and is used as a rooming and boarding house for colored people.
A number of our well known citizens attended this school, among them being: Dr. Sarah I. Shuey and her sisters, Mary and Margaret, David S. Hirshberg, W. S. Baxter, Jos. P. and Mary Dieves, Chas, G. and Geo. W. Reed, Lowell J. Hardy [Jr.], Monroe Hummeltenberg, Nancy Moore, Mary McKay, Lottie Hoag. Mary and Lucy Keys (mother of Surveyor-General Kingsbury), Seth B. and Henry Maloon, John Williams, Dr. Ben P. Wall, John and Dennis King, John and Henry Willy, Lizzie and Orrel Williams, Alfred W., Henry H. and Ellen Burrell, Monroe Barnes, Chas. E. Lufkin, Henry Graffleman and Sir Henry Heyman.
(To be continued.)