f/8 and Be There
Fred Lynch

1st Franklin School principal retires

Posted Friday, May 21, 2010, at 7:30 AM

It was 55 years ago that G.D. Fronabarger took these pictures of a ceremony at Franklin Elementary School. In checking with the school, we found that its first principal, Miss Nellie Krueger, was standing third from the right side in the lower photo. Our librarian, Sharon Sanders, found the story of the event in the May 21, 1955 edition of the Southeast Missourian.

The Franklin School playground was the setting for a program May 20, 1955, honoring Krueger, who was concluding her last year as the school's principal. She was principal for 28 years.

In the top photo, state senator Albert M. Spradling Jr. is seated right, and standing behind the microphone in the lower photo. Spradling, the master of ceremonies, was state senator from 1952-1977 and a former pupil at Franklin.

Miss Virginia Willer, holding a gift, was one of the first teachers at Franklin when Krueger began her duties in 1927. She presented Krueger with a corsage of pink carnations.

The other gentleman was Louis J. Schultz, superintendent of Cape Girardeau Public Schools. He briefly outlined Krueger's work in the school system. Schultz retired in 1962. When the former Central High School on Pacific Street, where Schultz had spent all his years in Cape Girardeau education, was remodeled into a seventh-grade center, it was named Louis J. Schultz School. It was dedicated in the fall of 1965.

During the ceremony, Mrs. Linus Bartels, president of the Franklin Parent-Teachers Unit, led the audience in a song written for the occasion. Mrs. Glenn Carroll, immediate past president of the PTU, presented Krueger with a 21-inch television set, a gift from her pupils, patrons and teachers past and present. She also received a check.

The program came at the end of the school's annual Play Day program, which included races, dances and games. The ceremony was concluded with fifth grade pupils square dancing, accompanied and directed by Jack Russell.

Next year, Krueger would become director of audio-visual education for the entire school system.


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  • Here's what the school looks like today and an aerial photo of the neighborhood in 1964.


    Franklin School, which is slated to be replaced, was the only school in the district without a name on its front.

    It wasn't until 1971 that the 8-inch-high white plastic letters were placed above the door. Money for the sign was raised by the Student Council, which sold school supplies and held a used book sale.

    -- Posted by ksteinhoff on Fri, May 21, 2010, at 8:03 AM
  • I like the spectators up on the slide in the top photo. Thanks Fred!

    -- Posted by Kllrfsh on Fri, May 21, 2010, at 9:33 AM
  • How I remember Miss Krueger during my 8 years at Franklin (1942-50)! She maintained discipline and order! She put the fear of the Lord into quite a few of us!

    In the Fall 1954 I returned to Cape on a visit and dropped in to see her. I remember her telling me about an education project she was working on. She said it was her last year before retirement. She was a no nonsense principal, for sure!

    Thanks for the photo and the memories. It saddens me so much to hear Franklin may be torn down. What a tragedy if Cape Girardeau lets it happen.

    -- Posted by voyager on Fri, May 21, 2010, at 1:45 PM
  • went to franklin 63-69. lived about a block from there and walked by ms. kruegers house every day. was quite scared of her. but she was older then and was probably not scarey at all. lived with sister i believe. i, too am saddened by the closing of the school. it is built like a fortess, so i can't believe it can't be saved. i guess there is alot to go around or under. it held the heat well!!

    -- Posted by workingdude on Sat, May 22, 2010, at 12:15 PM
  • Nellie Krueger was the meanest woman I ever met. She would have made an excellent women's prison warden.

    -- Posted by Yankee Station on Sun, May 23, 2010, at 5:38 AM