Miss Emilie Crenshaw Holladay

b. 06 Aug 1910 - Hampden-Sydney, VA;
d. 06 Apr 2008 - Farmville, VA


1955 Anchor, p. 11 1964 Anchor, p. 59 1965 Anchor, p. 28
  Attached is an image from the 1964 Anchor showing Miss Holladay's Trigonometry class. It was the Fall of 1963.

Here are the players from left to right:
Wayne McPhail '64 (my very good friend  whom I haven't seen since 1965 and wish would emerge from the woodwork and join us for a Reunion at least once); Allan White '65; Tommy Buckingham '64; Shirley Elder (Tierney) '65; Joel Shapiro '64; Ricky Curtis '64; Tommy Flax '64 (OK, you can barely see him, but I know it is him); Dave Spriggs '64 (looking studious for the camera); Howard Conn '65; George Rowe '64; Don Harvey '65; Norman Olshansky '64; Ralph Farmer '64; Jimmy Wren '64; Fred Anspach '64; Miss Holladay; and ???
10/29/03 - Dave Spriggs ('64) of VA - 05/03/03
Thanks, Dave!
Not seen in the photo, because she was sitting behind Wayne McPhail and out of the camera, is Jean Poole (Burton) '64.  I mention this because she and I and several others noticed very early in the class year that Miss Holladay would frequently punctuate her verbal sentences with the phrase, 'Do you see?'  I suppose she didn't realize she was doing it, perhaps a habit formed over many years of teaching. 

It seemed that, having placed a complex geometrical concept near our reluctant brains, uttering "Do you see?" would then shove it inside where it could not escape overnight.  Ironically, it had the opposite effect; once we saw the pattern, it became a game and a major distraction.  At first we would merely keep count, but soon it evolved into a full fledged pool. 

Before class we would log our guess with the designated official scorer of the day and await the results some 45 minutes later.  As the count rose, anxious wagerers would either sigh as their guess was surpassed or fidget as the count approached their estimate.  As the class ended, the winner would be announced and claim bragging rights for the day.  Statistics were kept; average "Do you sees?" per day were recorded; standard deviations calculated.  Daily guesses become clustered around the daily average.  Indeed, there were mathematics at work here, but had nothing to do with trigonometry.   In this Vegas-like betting atmosphere, it is a miracle that any learning took place. 

When many of us returned for her College Algebra & Solid Geometry class in the Spring 1964 semester, of course we resumed the pool.  And I won't make you ask;  my recollection is that the number of 'Do you sees?' per class was usually in the 30s, with a one-day high of 39.  (Former participants are invited to correct my recollection of the count.)

Incidentally, Emilie Holladay does not appear in the SSDI, so she may still be with us.  From her photos, I would estimate her age
in the early 60s to be early 40s, so she would be in her 80s today.

- Dave Spriggs ('64) of VA - 05/03/03
Thanks, Dave!

Longwood College, B. A.
Columbia University, M. A.

Algebra, Math, Solid Geometry, Trigonometry

Saturday, April 23, 2005 - Longwood University, Farmville, VA
Miss Emilie Holladay
Saturday, April 23, 2005 - Longwood University, Farmville, VA
Mrs. Wilma Salmon Robinson and Miss Emilie Holladay

Courtesy of Mrs. Wilma Salmon Robinson, Resent by Dave Spriggs ('64) of VA - 10/11/05
Thanks again, Dave!

 Another eccentric, but she managed to push these complex subjects
into our adolescent, testosterone-soaked, male heads.

- Dave Spriggs ('64) of VA - 05/08/03
Thanks, Dave!

Miss Holladay looks wonderful!  She must have been a mere teenager when she taught us! 

- Kathy Pilgrim Clark ('63) of VA - 10/12/05
That must have been it!  GIGGLES!  Thanks, Kathy!

From the Richmond Times-Dispatch - 04/08/08:

Emilie Crenshaw Holladay

HOLLADAY, Emilie Crenshaw, died Sunday, April 6, 2008 in Farmville. Born August 6, 1910 in Hampden-Sydney, she was a daughter of Dr. Waller Morton Holladay and Genevieve Venable Holladay. She graduated from Longwood University and taught mathematics in Covington and Newport News before returning to teach at Longwood in 1966. She was a member of the Farmville Presbyterian Church, The Daughters of the American Revolution, Kappa Delta Sorority, the Longwood Garden Club and the Thursday Morning Book Club, as well as several Bridge groups.

She is survived by her niece, Ann Morton DeMuth Neale; and nephew, Anthony Mealy DeMuth Jr.; four great-nieces and their five children. Graveside services will be held Wednesday, April 9 at 11 a.m. at College Church, Hampden-Sydney. At noon, friends are invited to the Farmville Presbyterian Church to greet the family and share a light lunch. Memorial gifts may be made to the Farmville Presbyterian Church, 200 West Third Street, Farmville, Va. 23901. Doyne-Burger-Davis Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Published in the Richmond Times-Dispatch on 4/8/2008.
Guest Book

We are indeed saddened to learn of the passing of Ms. Emilie Crenshaw Holladay. She was a wonderful teacher, so mild mannered and so brilliant. She was so pleasant when she would come in to do her grocery shopping at H & B Grocery on 30th Street. For some reason, when she came into the store while I was working I felt a bit uncomfortable and still do not understand why except it was boyish shyness that kept me from saying a kind word or even to try to have a conversation. I would just smile and acknowledge her, but go back about my chores. It may have been that I was one of her marginal students with poor math skills.

- Joe Madagan ('57) of FL - 04/08/08
Thank you, Joe. Perhaps it was indeed the shyness. I invariably behaved the same way myself
whenever encountering a teacher outside of school.

I was saddened by the passing of Miss Holladay, my algebra teacher in the 11th grade.  She was a no-nonsense teacher but I felt a really fine teacher.  She surprised us all in 1960, the final game of the World Series.  I had her in F period and everyone knew it was a 9 to 9 game in the nine inning.  We had thought no way would she let us listen to the game.  But surprise, surprise, she asked, "Who has a radio?" and of course, someone did.  Soon after Bill Mazeroski hit his famous walk-off home run and the Pirates won and Miss Holladay had scored many points with her students.

- Ed Nichols ('62) of Northern VA - 05/17/08
Thank you, Eddie.

Can't You See

(Marshall Tucker Band)

I'm gonna take a freight train, down at the station
I don't care where it goes
Gonna climb me a mountain, the highest mountain, Lord,
Gonna jump off, nobody gonna know
Can't you see, can't you see, what that woman, she been doin' to me
Can't you see, can't you see, what that woman been doin' to me
I'm gonna find me a hole in the wall, gonna crawl inside and die
That lady, mean ol' woman Lord, done told me goodbye
Can't you see, can't you see, what that woman she been doin' to me
Can't you see, can't you see, what that woman been doin' to me
Gonna buy me a ticket now, as far as I can, ain't never comin' back
Take me Southbound, all the way to Georgia now, till the train run out of track
Can't you see, can't you see, what that woman, she been doin' to me
Can't you see, can't you see, what that woman been doin' to me

"Can't You See" lyrics courtesy of http://www.stlyrics.com/lyrics/blow/cantyousee.htm,
also at the suggestion of Dave Spriggs ('64) of VA - 10/28/03.
Thanks again, Dave!

"Can't You See" was a real stretch and
an inside joke for the few of us who ran the "Do You See?" lottery.

I think this is much more clever and a more recognizable tune:
"SIGNS" by the Five Man Electrical Band Signs ..... sines .... trigonometry teacher ..... get it???

- Dave Spriggs ('64) of VA - 04/30/04

I DO get it, Dave - and you're right - this is COOL!  Thanks!
(But of course, I liked the other joke as well, soooo I left those lyrics, too.)

For the mathematically-challenged among us, you could place above the lyrics:

"SIGNS" (Sines)

as recorded by Tesla

And the sign says "No long hair freaky people need not apply"
So I put my hair under my hat and I went in to ask him why
He said you look like a fine outstanding young man I think you'll do
So I took off my hat I said "Imagine that Huh Me working for you"
Signs Signs Everywhere there's signs
Blocking up the scenery Breaking up my mind
Do this Don't do that Can't you read the sign
And the sign says "Anybody caught trespassing will be shot on sigh"
So I jumped the fence and I yelled at the house
What gives you the right To put up a fence And keep me out
Or to keep Mother Nature in
If God was here He'd tell it to your face Man You're some kind of sinner
Oh Say now mister Can't you read
You got to have a shirt and tie to get a seat
You can't watch No You can't eat You ain't supposed to be here
And the sign says "You gotta have a membership card just to get inside" Huh
And the sign says "Everybody welcome Come in Kneel down and pray"
But then they passed around a plate at the end of it all
And I didn't have a penny to pay
So I got me a pen and paper And I made up my own little sign
I said Thank you Lord for thinking about me I'm alive and doing fine

"Signs" lyrics courtesy of http://www.getlyrics.com/lyrics.php/Five+Man+Electrical+Band/SHOW+LYRICS/Signs,
at the suggestion of Dave Spriggs ('64) of VA - 04/30/04
Thanks, Dave!

"Signs" midi courtesy of http://www.havasudoug.com/midi/signs.mid,
also at the suggestion of Dave Spriggs ('64) of VA - 04/30/04
Thanks again, Dave!

Math Image courtesy of http://www.w3.org/Math/Software/mathml_software_cat_components.html - 04/08/08

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