Posted by: newenglandarchivist | August 15, 2013

South Boston Schools

Cornerstone ceremony for CCCH
Photo from the laying of the cornerstone for the new Archbishop Cushing Central High School in South Boston.

One of the fun things about being an archivist–at least for me–is going through the old photos. This one was taken in 1952 at the ceremony to lay the new cornerstone for Archbishop Central High School. Richard Cushing was Archbishop from 1944 to 1958. When he was elevated to Cardinal, the school also changed its name and became CCCH.

Long before it was Cushing High, it had been called Saints Peter and Paul High School. The school opened in 1860 and had many successful years. But the Depression hit the school hard and it had to close in 1937. In 1942, Sister Eleanor Joseph Delaney (sitting on the left of Archbishop Cushing) announced the school would reopen. It did and became Cushing High.

Also seen in the picture is the Mother Superior of the Sisters of Notre Dame, Sister Josepha de Francois, sitting on the right of Cushing. Standing behind Sister Eleanor Joseph and Mother Josepha de Francois are [from left to right]: Sr. Therese Marguerite, Sr. Loretto Julia [later Mother Superior of the SNDs], Sr. Angelita of the Sacred Heart, Sister Ursula Marie and Sister Agnes Stanislaus.

The Sister in back on the far right is unidentified. If anyone recognizes her, please let me know!


  1. I graduted from St. Peter and Pauls grammer in 1945. there were times we had to sit in school in the winter with our jackets and gloves on but we did learn. 90% of the sisters were good techers and kind women, the other 10 should have never joined the convent let alone be teachers. but I understand today that for some women they didnt have a choice. It was the convent or marry or the telephone company.

    • Thanks so much for your comment. The Sisters received little financial support from the parishes in those days, so it’s no surprise the classrooms were freezing. I’m glad that most of your memories were good.

  2. Re last email: was it named St. Peter and Paul HS in 1948?

    • No, That school closed in the late 1930s and reopened in the early 1940s, and became Archbishop Cushing High School and later Cardinal Cushing High School.

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