Tuesday, November 24, 2009

A Look Back In Time: About Principal Samuel Mills Sprole And Public School 32 On Hoyt Street


PS 32 original building


Former Public School 32 Building on Hoyt Street
at the corner of President Street

Current Samuel Mills Sproke School,
PS 32 Building at the same location.

Though I have passed Public School 32 on Hoyt Street many times and have attended my fair share of meetings in the auditorium, I never really took notice of the official name of the school. Yet it is spelled out in big silver letters right over the front entrance : Samuel Mills Sprole.

Mr. Sprole, it turns out, was the school's principal for thirty-two years, from the school's beginning in 1873 until his death in 1905.

Reader Alexandrea did notice the name, investigated and found Sprole's obituary, published in the New York Times in 1905.
According to the article, he was extremely dedicated to the school and educated "many men now prominent in various walks of life in Brooklyn."

However, Sprole's school building was a beautiful brownstone building which does not exist any more. Instead, the present building was erected in the early 1950's at the same location. ( I was told that a shovel from the 1949 ground breaking is displayed in the school.)
What a pity, really. The original building, with its cast iron fence, is so much more attractive.

Thanks, Alexandrea, for this great bit of neighborhood history.

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Lisanne said...

I always wondered about that! Thanks!

Mr. Tobias said...

This is really interesting. My son attends the school now. I plan to ask the current principal Deborah Florio (a woman gasp) about the shovel. I have never seen it. They recently did some great renovations to the library and auditorium and added a garden/greenhouse.