The Muses was a name a group of young girls in the Noe Valley district of San Francisco gave to themselves. They attended St Paul's High School. They were fast friends. They called themselves the Muses because they were a group of 9 girls and there were 9 Muses. They each took a name of one of the Muses as there own. We hope to reconstruct the name of the Muse each girl selected.

What happened to these girls? Well, as naturally happens, they grew up, most got married and built lives of their own, but they remained friends for life.

Dolores J. Baptista, known as "DoBap", pronounced "Doe Bap". DoBap was born 29 December 1923 in Sonoma, California to Manuel and Florence Baptista. Both her parents were born in California. Her father's parents were born in the Azores, and her mother's father was born in Ireland. In 1930 she was living in Napa, California.  In 1934 the family moved to 1320 Sanchez Street, next door to Margaret Keane. The family later moved to 26th Street, across the street from Helen Cunningham. DoBap worked for the State of California for many years until she retired. It is while working for the State of California that she met Lee Lawson and on 5 September 1970 she married Lee E. Lawson in Orange, California. Dolores passed away of 25 Janaury 1995.

Helen Cunningham was born in San Francisco on 3 January 1923 and the birth was recorded as Ellen S. Cunningham, mother's maiden name was Carlin. She lived at 3972 26th Street, a half block from Mary Ellen and Gladie. Both of Helen's parents were born in Ireland, counted on April 4, 1930 by Helen Burke. Or Helen  S. Cunningham, daughter of Ellen Cunningham living at 3979 26th Street, both parents born in the Irish Free State, counted on April 4, 1930 by Mary McHugh. All the information is the same, except the street number, and the first name of Helen's mother. All the children are the same, James J., William M(Billy), Francis F(Frank), Charles E. & Helen S. Helen married Howie Follan in 1954 in San Anselmo, California. Theylived in the Westlake Area of Daly City, raising 4 children. Helen passed away on 31 May 2001.

Gladie Terese Erlenheim, pronounced "Glade E" Gladie was born 13 June 1924 in San Francisco, to George J. Erlenheim and Elisabeth Terese Berberich. Gladie lived across the street from Mary Ellen Gleeson, possibly at 1267 Sanchez. Gladie's parents were born in Russia and Germany. Gladie married William Whitt. They divorced in February 1968 and Gladie passed away in Sonoma on 18 January 1987.

Mary Ellen Gleeson was born 14 August 1922 in San Francisco to James Gleeson and Mary Ellen Lee. She grew up at 1280 Sanchez.  Mary Ellen married Gerald Murphy 16 July 1949 in San Francisco, and they had 6 children, 12 grandchildren and 4 great grandchildren. Mary Ellen passed away on 15 June 2009 in Redwood City, California.

Margaret L. Keane was born in San Francisco on 9 April 1923. Margaret was the daughter of Patrick Keane and Agnes Gavin and lived at 1316 Sanchez Street, one half block from Helen, Gladie, and Mary Ellen. Both her parents were born in the Irish Free State. Margaret married Lawrence "Bud" Dolan. They have 5 children and 4 grandchildren.

Dolores O'Dwyer. Dolores was born 28 August 1923 in San Francisco to William O'Dwyer and Margaret Meany. Her parents were born in County Clare, Ireland. She lived at 1307 Sanchez Street, across the street from Margaret and DoBap. After graduation, Dolores entered the BVM Community in Dubuque, Iowa and professed her vows on 8 September 1943. Dolores taught school in Cicero, Illinois, Seattle, Washington, Portland, Oregon, and Glendale and Los Angeles, California. She arrived in Southern California in 1964 and taught school in Glendale. She was appointed Principal of St. Bernard School in 1968 and served as Principal for 30 years. She retired from teaching in 1998 and now lives in Glendale in Sister Joan's family home.

Barbara(Bobbie) Riley. Born 22 March 1923 to William Patrick Riley and Maude Elizabeth Raben. Both her parents were from Stockton, Califonria. Bobbie lived on Clipper Street, around the corner from Gladie and Mary Ellen. Bobbie had 3 brothers and 1 sister. Bobbie married John Lathier on 27 June 1953 and they had 3 daughters, 8 grandchildren, 1 step-grandchild and 4 great grandchildren and as of 2010 there were 2 more  great grandchildren on the way. John passed away on 30 December 2000 and Bobbie now resides in Turlock, California near her daughters.

Mary Cecelia Sullivan, known as Cecelia, was born 1 May 1924 in San Francisco, to Dan Sullivan and Bridget Gleeson. In 1930 they were living at 610 Russia Avenue. Cecelia married James McElearney. They had 4 children, 9 grandchildren and ? great grandchildren. Cecelia passed away on 19 May 2008.

Helen Sullivan was born 1 October 1922 in San Francisco, to Dan Sullivan and Bridget Gleeson.  Helen married Ray Whelan. They had 6 children. There are now at least 5 grandchildren and ? great grandchildren

The Nine Muses. We had hoped to determine the Muse selected by each girl, but it looks like we will be unable to do it.

Muse                  Domain                            Emblem

Calliope             Epic poetry                       Writing tablet

Clio                   History                              Scrolls

Erato                Lyric poetry                       Cithara (an ancient Greek musical instrument in the lyre family)

Euterpe             Music                                Aulos (an ancient Greek musical instrument)

Melpomene      Tragedy                             Tragic mask

Polyhymnia      Choral poetry                     Veil

Terpsichore     Dance                                 Lyre

Thalia              Comedy                             Comic mask

Urania             Astronomy                         Globe and compass

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This page was last updated on September 17, 2010