My name was Dorothy Stoppelmann, and I lived on a farm 2 ½ miles west of Belle Plaine. At that time my address was Blakely, Minn., probably because I lived in Blakely Township.
I graduated from Belle Plaine High School, in 1960, and celebrated our 55th class reunion this summer with other members of my class.
A few weeks before the reunion I had read that our second grade teacher had passed away.
What a surprise, when reading the obituary, that she had attained the age of 100 years, one month and two days. Even more so was the fact that her maiden name was Weber, and her first name was Kathleen. My entire life I had only known her as Mrs. Blaha. In school we were to call our teachers by Mrs. or Miss and their last name, never by a first name.
The second grade class during the 1949-50 school year in Belle Plaine, Minn. Dorothy Bullert of Hutchinson is pictured fourth from the right. Submitted by Dorothy Bullert
Enclosed is a picture of Mrs. Blaha with a few of her students from her second grade class in the spring of 1950. I say spring because, by the looks of the trees and the clothes we are wearing it must have been that time of year. Note: caps on the two boy’s head, rolled up pant legs on two girls, scarves around the neck of two girls and the girls wore anklets, even the teacher. I’m the 4th on the right and I have No idea why my scarf is around my head and not on my shoulders! I must have had a bad hair day!
Of the eight in the picture, six of us graduated in 1960, and three of them were at the class reunion. One gal moved to California, and one boy dropped out of school.
In talking to class members at the reunion who had Mrs. Blaha as their teacher, some thought she was strict, but I thought she was a very nice teacher. She was my favorite grade school teacher. How many years Mrs. Blaha taught second-grade, I do not know, but her obituary stated that her last years as a teacher were as a second grade teacher in Belle Plaine.