Posted in Buildings, Early Montclair, History, Schools

Hays School District

In March of 1886, the Board of Supervisors created a new school district.  That took from portions of the Piedmont, Peralta, and Fruitvale districts and representing about 44 children. 

Hays Canyon Schoolhouse
Students pose with their teacher. In this photo and of the 6 children sitting down. Walter Wood 2nd from the left, his brother Alfred Wood is 4th from the left Harry W. Logan is seated on far right and his brother Maurice Logan (the painter) is standing far right. The Logan’s and the Wood’s lived at Lake Temescal.
c 1900-1910 Oakland History Room

The new district was called the Hays School District, in honor of the late Colonel John Coffee Hays

The superintendent appointed the following residents of the area as trustees:

  • W.H. Mead
  • J.H. Medau
  • Mrs. Susan Hays

Land Donated

The land for the school was given to the district from Hetty S. Henshaw.   The Montclair Firehouse was built in the spot in 1927, using the front part of the lot.

Hays school -
Oakland Tribune Jul 16, 1886

New School House Built

Requests for bids to build the school were made in July of 1886.

Oakland Tribune July 1886

The completed school was small at only 32×36 feet,  with just one classroom.  It was Gothic in design with a graceful looking bell tower.  It had two entrances, one for the boys and the other for the girls, with each entry having a 6×6 vestibule.  The sash bars of the windows are all horizontal, copying the style of schools in Europe. 

Hays School House -
Oakland Tribune Jul 07, 1886

The construction cost about $2,500 and took about two months to build.

Oakland Tribune Jul 1886

The architects were Goodrich & Newton.

Dedication

The dedication of the school was held in October 1886.  It was attended most of the families that lived in the area.  Opening remarks were made by Judge EM Gibson and W.H Mead.  Some of the families in attendance:

Entertainment provided by the students from the school under the direction of their teacher Miss Lucy Law.  The following students performed:

  • Clara Gibson
  • Gussie Gibson
  • Carrie Mead
  • Daisy Mead
  • Susie Mead
  • Mattie Mead
  • Edith Medau
  • Louise Medau
Oakland Tribune Feb 11, 1888
Oakland Tribune Nov 23, 1889

Graduation 1901

Hays School was the scene of brightness and beauty on Friday June 14, 1901. Friends and family gathered to witness the closing exercises. The four graduates were:

  • Jessie Logan
  • Robert Shepherd
  • August Carson
  • Scott Monroe
Oakland Tribune June 1901

School Trustees

In 1904 appointed Mr. S. Morrell and Mr. Johnson to fill the vacancies caused by the removal of George Hunt and G.W. Logan.

Attendance for the year ending 1911 for the Hays School was 11 students.

Oakland Tribune Aug 01, 1911

School Closes

The school was closed around 1913, and the building was demolished.  It was probably due to the Oakland, Antioch, and Eastern Railway construction, later known as the Sacramento Northern.   For more on the Sacramento Northern, please go here. The East Bay Hills Project

Montclair Firehouse

In 1927, the Montclair firehouse was built on the same site. The storybook style building was designed by Eldred E. Edwards of the Oakland Public Works Department.

Storybook firehouse on Moraga Avenue in the
Montclair district of Oakland, California. 1934, ohrphoto.districts.031.
Oakland. Buildings Oakland Public Library, Oakland History Room.

Misc Articles

Oakland Tribune 1881
Hays school -
Oakland Tribune May 14, 1890
Oakland Tribune 1889

Controversy

The End

Posted in Early Montclair, History, People

Shepherd Canyon …a bit of history

Have you ever wondered why it is called Shepherd Canyon?

Oakland Tribune 1927

It named after the Shepherd Family who owned about 200 acres and lived there from about 1875 to the early 1900s.

You can view the location of Shepherd’s land in a Map of the City of Oakland, Berkeley, Oakland & Brooklyn Townships, and Alameda dated 1889 Published by E.P. Vandercook & Co. Real estate agents.

View map here Georeferencer.com

William J Shepherd (1844-1921) emigrated from England in about 1865 with his parents Thomas and Ellen Shepherd, brothers John and Thomas and sisters Mary Ann and Elizabeth.

Oakland Tribune Nov 04, 1876
Wm. J. Shepherd granted citizenship

In 1878 William married Mary Rogers (1842-1907). They had six children, William, James, Mary, Ellen, Louise, and Robert. They attended the Hays School.

Oakland Tribune 1875
LARGE LANDOWNERS OF 1876-BUSINESS DIRECTORY OF OAKLAND TOWNSHIP-OF ALAMEDA TOWNSHIP-
Oakland Tribune 1878
From the 1895 Directory

Hays School Graduation – 1901

William Shepherd died in San Jose in 1921

Oakland Tribune June 1921

Shepherd Pass Road –

A few articles discussing building a road that would run through the Canyon to connect to Skyline using County Road 2457 (now Shepherd Canyon Road).

Oakland Tribune Jun 15, 1896
Oakland Tribune Sep 18, 1897

Oakland Tribune Daily Knave 1953. Settling a moot point in Oakland nomenclature from William’s nephew.

Oakland Tribune 1953

Links

Posted in Early Montclair, History, Montclair, Montclair Tracts

Smith Reserve

The Smith Reserve is a subdivision in Montclair and is now known as Piedmont Pines.  

The area is located at the top of  Park Blvd with borders on Shepherd Canyon and Joaquin Miller Park and up to Skyline Blvd.

Oakland Tribune 1928

“Selected years ago By F.M. “Borax” Smith as a private estate”.

Oakland Tribune May 22, 1926.

F.M. “Borax” Smith set this land and another piece of further down on Park Blvd aside for his own private estate.  The area at the top of Dimond Canyon and included two creeks where Smith could hunt and have picnics.

He chose to build his home “Arbor Villa” on land located at Park Blvd between E 22nd and E 28th. Arbor Villa – Oakland Local WIki

In 1919, 25 acres of the Smith Reserve was sold to the Oakland-Piedmont Council of the Boy Scouts of America, for camp for the scouts.  It was called Camp Dimond was in use from 1919-1948.

In 1948 the Oakland Public School district took over the land and built Joaquin Miller Elementary and Montera Junior High Schools.

Smith Reserve Goes on Sale May 1926

Smith reserve is the most beautiful tract of land opened by the Syndicate Company” 

Oakland Tribune May 23, 1926

In July of 1926, two months after the subdivision was open, the Realty Syndicate reported nearly $250,000 in sales.  It was also reported that a bus transportation system will be put into operation, connecting with both local and San Francisco electric lines. -Oakland Tribune, July 18, 1928.

Bus Service to Smith Reserve

Admiring Smith Reserve

In an October 1928 edition of the Oakland Tribune noted actress, Miss Grace Valentine acclaims. Miss Valentine was staring at the Fulton Theatre.

Smith Reserve the most beautiful home-park that she had ever seen in the Eastbay”. “If I were a permanent resident of the East Bay I would certainly wish to make my home in this beautiful park”

Miss. Valentine Oct 1928

 More clippings about Smith Reserve

Please see: Casa Altadena 

Please see: Casa Maria Luisa

The End

Updated Dec 16, 2019