was the Milk Row schoolhouse
, the oldest school structure on our soil, dating from 1819, and valued at $650.
Among other things that ‘fell to us’ were a few teachers and some of the trustees.
, in point of service, was the oldest of the former, having been first elected to a Charlestown school in the spring of 1836.
She remained with us until August, 1846.
Up to that time this was an unprecedented term of service within our borders.
She received a salary of $210. Somerville
benefited by the experience of two old trustees, Guy C. Hawkins
and Alfred Allen
, who were elected members of our first school board.
We may believe that the policy of our schools, at least for a few years, was much the same as before 1842.
With the growth of the town, Miss Burnham's school increased from fifty-one, the number in 1842, to 101 pupils when she left it. This we learn from the semi-annual examinations, which came—as of old—in the spring
The whole number of scholars in Somerville
in 1844, between the ages of four and sixteen, as taken by the assessors (Levi Russell
, Fitch Cutter
, and David A. Sanborn
) was 306.
May 19, 1846, the committee voted to recommend the town to build a new grammar schoolhouse near the burying ground on Milk Street, ‘provided a suitable lot can be obtained at a cost not exceeding three cents per foot.’
A lot was found, and immediate steps were taken to build thereon.
It was at this juncture that Miss Burnham
There is no direct reference on the records to Miss Burnham
during all these years, and no allusion to her severing her connection with the school.
Her efficiency is commended in general terms along with the other primary teachers.
lost a good teacher when they let Miss Burnham
go to Cambridge
There are several now living II this city who were her old pupils.
For information about her I am chiefly indebted to Mrs. Martha Ellen
, who was a Milk Row scholar, Francis Cogswell
, for so many years the superintendent of schools in Cambridge
, and Mrs. Harriette Reed Woodbury
, a lifelong friend of Miss Burnham