With elected officials, former and current teachers and some 265 students and many parents, Marshall Elementary celebrated its 100 anniversary Friday with singing, dancing, stories and filling a time capsule to be opened in 2115.
Dulce Gutiérrez, who has a nine-year old at the school, said it was impressive to see how many people have been part of the school in different roles. “Miss Jeremi is retired but her enthusiasm and how motivated she always is to be here is amazing,” said Gutiérrez in Spanish, referring to Lizzie Jeremi, who taught at the school for 39 years and is now the PTA Board Director.
“It was a wonderful to see the generations of teachers who were able to make it,” added Marcelle Poulos, who taught at the school for 17 years and now has a child in 4th grade.
Named after James Wilson Marshall, a carpenter and discoverer of gold, the school first went up in 1852 on Mission Street between 15th and 16th Streets, but was destroyed in the fires of the 1906 earthquake. A smaller school was rebuilt on 15th and Capp Streets and reopened in 1914, but that school was closed for a year while it was rebuilt in 1977 to adhere to new fire and earthquake codes.
It now offers bilingual education to 265 students and is a Science Focus School. In the 1970s school officials found a time capsule from 1914 that included newspaper articles and notes about the school.
Natalie Guandique, from Mission Graduates who oversees the after-school programs, said the time capsule created this year offered students the opportunity to think about the objects that would provide a glimpse of 2015 to those who open it 100 years from now. What did they decide on? Among other things, pencils and a 2014 Giants’ World series paper, a 2014 Harvey Milk Stamp.
Naomi Lempert López, a parent of a 4th and 1st grader at Marshall, said she was happy with the celebration because “we learned a lot of the history of the school. We learned it was James Marshall who had found gold in California,” she said. Lempert López said she loves the school because of the high quality of education and community, but also because “it’s a sweet small hidden gem of the Mission District.”