Oakland Tribune February 8, 1963 1

Harbor Homes School was a school in the Harbor Homes Housing Project. Unlike the project, the school wasn't built until after WWII. It existed in 10 temporary buildings from 1948 to 1963.

The school buildings were constructed for $85,000, and 266 students enrolled for classes on March 9, 1948. The principals were Matt Griffeath (1948–1951), Benjamin Hargrave (1951–?), Melvin P. Mollan (–1959) , and Charles Cline (1959–1961). Hargrave was the first black principal in the Oakland schools. 3

Teachers included Lillian Clancy, who was the last teacher in 1963.

Being in a small space, the school had some special challenges. A baseball hit into the water was considered a home run. Griffeath had a special long-handled net to fish the baseballs out of the water. The classroom buildings were initially heated by coal burning pot bellied stoves, but students learned they could get Monday morning off by stuffing rocks in the chimney. 1

Mayor Cliff Rishell, principal Matt Griffeath, Lew F. Galbraith, and Fae Tippon (src)principal Matt Griffeath registering new students in 1948 (src)

Links and References

  1. Old Harbor Homes School Is Closed Oakland Tribune February 8, 1963
  2. 40 School Administrative, Supervisory Aides Named Oakland Tribune September 2, 1959
  3. A 'Very Special' Honor Oakland Tribune February 16, 1977