February 5, 2017– A photo of May J. Kelly, AMTNJ President #41: presidential years 1954-1955, has still not been found.
A few years before AMTNJ’s Centennial Anniversary in 2014, Deborah L. Ives, #92: 2005-2006, then AMTNJ’s Historian, formed a committee to sort and organize AMTNJ artifacts collected in over a dozen large boxes and in order to make a celebration presentation at the Two-Day AMTNJ Conference to be held in October 2014, in New Brunswick.
One hundred years earlier then President Richard Morris, #1: 1914-1915, held the first business meeting at Rutgers, New Brunswick. AMTNJ was created to provide leadership in mathematics education for New Jersey and later became a model for the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) which was formed in Cleveland, Ohio in 1920.
J. Michael Nuspl, #66: 1979-1980, volunteered to assist in this seemingly enormous project. Nuspl had collected or taken photos of AMTNJ Past-presidents since March of 1979. Said Nuspl, “I have personally met with more than 50 past-presidents at previous conferences and meetings and was able to provide valuable backup information for the project.” Eventually, after Nuspl retired from active school employment, he became the lead researcher for the project to find photos of all past presidents. With the assistance of several AMTNJ past presidents, Nuspl, Ives, and Regina F. Cullen, #65: 1978-1979, formed the core team. David J. Glatzer, #67: 1980-1981, Joyce Glatzer, #75: 1988-1989, James Rahn, #81: 1994-1995, Mary E. Froustet, #57: 1970-1971, and Arthur L. Collard, #58: 1971-1972 helped with contributions.
Back to May Kelly. The committee found and verified every Past-president photo EXCEPT ONE. Missing is a photo of May J. Kelly, #41: 1954-1955, who served at Brighton Avenue Elementary School in Atlantic City, NJ. Nuspl remarked, “Too bad people then did not have access to selfies or Facebook or any other social media to make the committee’s search easier. Since elementary schools usually did not have yearbooks, maybe a collection of class photos in a scrap book or photo album kept by individual teachers might be found.”
During the 1990’s, Brighton School was closed permanently and all the history of the school including photos was removed to a storage building to make way for replacing the school with a new facility. Unfortunately, Hurricane Sandy made a mess of the storage site. “The problem now is does the storage site still exist? If it does exist, we need volunteers to help us with an ‘archeological mathematics photo dig,'” said Nuspl.
“We are waiting for a reply from our contact in Atlantic City as to whether the site still exists and is it in any shape to continue searching,” said Nuspl.
Note: Data found in the U.S. Federal Census of 1930, says Mrs. Kelly was born in Massachusetts in 1902 and then lived in Margate City, NJ. Her spouse William E. Kelly who was also born in Massachusetts BUT there were no photos just text information.