The Class of 1940
On the first Thursday of each month, members of the Ann Arbor High School Class of 1940 meet for a lunch at Weber's Inn. "This buffet is the best lunch deal in town!" said Marian (Allmendinger) Zwinck, one of seven energetic gray-haired alums gathered around a circular table in early October. Weber's staff knows them by name, and takes special care of them. (The Class of 1945 meets there too, convening a half-hour later.)
The Class of 1940 had 306 graduates. Their memories of Ann Arbor range from a Zeppelin flying over Huron Avenue to unpaved streets ("the WPA put in curbs and gutters"). Ypsilanti was "very fancy, a beautiful town."
The German community was so close-knit, Julius Blaess should have been in the class of 1939, but had to start school a year late so that he could learn English--even though he was a third-generation American.
They faced the Great Depression, and two among this group were together when they heard that Pearl Harbor had been attacked. There is comradeship and respect, and they still groan at Blaess's jokes.
Some things haven't changed. There were organ concerts before films at the Michigan Theater back then, too (but as part of a 5-cent matinee).