1928 - Alderson High School - 1968



by Amanda Iodice

Miss Ossie Keadle was the music teacher in the Alderson schools. She played the organ at the Methodist Church on Sundays and gave piano lessons after school and on weekends. Every boy and girl who went through Alderson Grade School in the late 30s, all of the 40s and the early 50s learned to read music.

I remember Every Good Boy Does Fine for the five lines and F A C E for the four spaces. All Cows Eat Grass were the lines on the bottom. We had to draw the Treble Clef and the Bass Clef and put notes on the proper lines and spaces. We even drew little "flags" for quarter notes and eighth notes. I was absolutely stellar at these mechanics. My downfall was making those letters into sounds, musical sounds.

Miss Ossie tried and tried. She gave me special lessons, pounding a key while asking me to reproduce the sound. She persuaded my mother to make me take piano lessons. Alas, I unwillingly practiced the wrong chords never even hearing my mistakes.

All grade school children had to sing in the choir. Miss Ossie made me sing in the high school choir and the church choir, as well. She clung in vain to a hope that no one was hopeless.

Years later, I was vindicated, in a way. Scared and alone in my first prep school study hall/assembly, we all rose to pledge allegiance to the American Flag. When everyone began to sing, I lustily belted out
The Star Spangled Banner. I had reached "bombs bursting in the air" before I realized with horror and dismay, that everyone else was singing an Episcopal Hymn of Praise!