The new wing alumni museum has been renamed to J.H.S. 47 Vocational Education Museum because of the artifacts, furniture and handmade materials from vocational courses. Gone are the days, when we had vocational courses such as woodworking, sewing, cooking, typing, printing, metal art/jewelry making and art. Still, we remember these classes by displaying artifacts and tools, donated by alumni, in our main floor museum (new wing).
Metal Arts: Albert Feldman
The metal arts tool and artifact collection includes hot plates, chisels, tongs, welding, wood hammers, and the stool used by teacher Albert Feldman. Students learned to work with metals (brass, copper and silver) to create items such as jewelry, ashtrays, coasters, and more. Students also welded metal together to make it more flexible and hammered it into different shapes and designs.
Woodworking: Thomas Sheppard, E. King Graves and Carl Davison
Students made a variety of woodworking projects using tools ranging from handsaws to hand planes. Some are on display as well as handmade projects such as shelving, ashtrays, boats, model houses and much more. Alumni donated all items.
Cooking: Vivian Warnick and Mimi McGovern
Cooking utensils such as silverware, dishes, pot and pans, pitchers, measuring cups, trays, glasses, and much more are preserved in the new wing museum. Students learned to cook desserts, cakes, pancakes, bread, drinks and more. They even learned how to set the table properly.
Sewing: Elizabeth Kreidal
It was such a surprise when an old sewing machine dating back to the 1920s was discovered in the school basement! It was there, untouched, for at least 80 years. The machine is now on display in the museum along with sewing kits and items. A tall wooden mirror stand, spinning wheel and a graduation dress are displayed near the sewing machine. Sewing classes probably began at our school in the early 1900s, and lasted until the 1990s.
Typing: Catherine Wilman and Marjorie Reynolds
We discovered two typewriters dating back to the 1940s, and even have accompanying typing exercise books. They are now on display in our museum. Typing students will remember copying from their typing books, “The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog,” – a phrase that contains all of the letters of the English alphabet. The typing practice has helped many of us become proficient in typing on computers, and has served as a useful skill in our careers.
Printing: Harry Kenduck, and Victor LaPlace
There are several letterpress printing tools used by the students to print posters, cards, ticket and graduation programs, and The Voice and 47 Speaks. In the museum, a printing movable press stands next to the typesetting letter case with composing sticks, which hold metal carved letters and ink rollers. There also are wood engravings for inked printmaking blocks.
Art: Mae Schaettle, Patricia B. Sherwood and Sandy Fox
Art taught us to appreciate painting, portraiture, drawings and many other genres. In later years, students had a pottery class and used a kiln. Several art items are on exhibit, ranging from paintbrushes to watercolor sets. Currently, art is still taught at the school.
Other items on display include a movie projector, a slide projector, typewriters, phonographs and records used many years ago at school.