Throwback Thursday: Our Female Founder

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THURSDAY, OCTOBER 24 — When we honor Mr. Blakely and, increasingly, Mr. Oliphant as early founders of St. Luke’s, we forget the contribution that one woman – Mrs. Edward Blakely, born Amandita Rivera – made to St. Luke’s

Mrs. Blakely, who was born in St. Louis to the Spanish vice-consul to that city, served St. Luke’s as “Housemother,” as well as Vice-President and Director of the school. This meant that she was responsible for looking after the students, especially younger children, who were boarding. She served in this role for three years, from the School’s founding in 1928 to 1931.

In that year, the graduating class chose to dedicate the yearbook to her. In the beginning of the Maroon and Gray (as the yearbook was then known), they wrote:

In deep appreciation of all that she has meant to St. Luke’s School and in especial gratitude for her care and many kindnesses to all its members, the Sixth Form takes sincere pleasure in dedicating this, The Maroon and Gray, our first Year Book, to Mrs. Edward Bradford Blakely.

Unfortunately, all was not well. As they noted later in the same yearbook, “Mrs. Blakely has been ill for some time and Mrs. Rivera, her mother, has taken over the responsibilities and difficulties of acting Housemother.” Within a few weeks of being honored with the dedication, Mrs. Blakely died on June 12, 1931. She was buried in Maine.

Posted by on October 24, 2013. Filed under Photos. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry