The Prom – A Look Back

Our museum deals with artifacts, history of “Our Towns”, mining, people that lived here in the past, old houses, businesses and their owners that have come and gone and stories. My favorite part of working with our museum is the stories that people share: the remember when stories. I have found that re-remembering is why people come to a museum, not just for research materials but to remember how a person felt during a certain time period. That person maybe you, a relative, or just past residents. Everyone has a story to tell.

As I passed the display in the museum that hinted to the by gone days of my high school years, a thought came to me as my eye caught an old prom dance card. Memories of the special spring time ritual that is called the Junior/Senior Prom played before my eyes. The following is a list of typical prom memories that are shared by many in our Cobre Valley Community.

  • Remember the mints and peanuts on the tables that usually were thrown around the room
  • That candles that float on water can set fire to decorations
  • The date you went with and the girl you ended up taking home weren’t the same person.
  • Having your mom help you pick out the nicest corsage with the big pin that holds it on the dress then going to pick up your date and finding out that she has no place to pin the flower on.
  • Girls trying to walk, let alone dance in a pair of very high heels for the very first time. Prom shoes are made to carry around while she dances in her hose with a seam up the back.
  • Trying to figure out what the extra piece of long, narrow cloth is that came with your tuxedo. It didn’t work as a tie and you learned a new word: cumber bun.
  • The prom date your mom arranged for you because she had a friend whose daughter didn’t have a date her senior year.
  • Finding out that this girl that would have been your last choice was the best date you ever had. Moms’ can be right.
  • The prom picture you have, now saved with in the pages of your yearbook has had your prom date snipped out of the picture by your spouse.
  • The “ride” you drove to Prom be it so humble or if lucky you borrowed a “sweet” ride to impress your date and all others.
  • Going to the fanciest restaurant in town for a Prom Dinner and not knowing why you have 3 forks, 2 spoons, 2 glasses, a cup, and a real big cloth napkin.
  • Not knowing that if you lay one of those forks sideways across the plate, the waiter takes the plate even if you have not started.
  • What is a gratuity?
  • The prom chaperones made sure that there was the required space between you and your date and your hands were in sight at all times while dancing and no bear hugging.
  • Knowing your date is now someone else’s girlfriend and he is watching you
  • Walking your date to her door after the prom and not knowing if you shake her hand or try to steal a kiss.
  • Not knowing that her mom and dad are up and watching out the window.
  • You ask your date if the porch light has a short in it because it is blinking off and on
  • Scheduling the family car, the only one the family owns for the prom before your brother takes it.
  • Putting an old bed spread or Mexican style blanket over the front seat to hide the worn spots in the seat.
  • The all-purpose family car was a station wagon and had a boat motor oil/gas smell.
  • Not being embarrassed when you have to move her crinoline, fluffy dress off to the side so that you can change gears with the “four on the floor” shifter.
  • Hoping her dad didn’t really mean to have her home by 10:00 pm or else
  • Passing her father in town while taking one last cruise of Broad street at 1:05 AM. Do you run, hide, take her home or sign up with the Army recruiter for a tour in Vietnam.
  • Trying to decide if a cold spoon, toothpaste or just a big flesh colored band aide will cover the “bruise” she received in a “fit of passion” at the prom. She didn’t think her parents would believe that she fell and hit a table during the grand march.
  • The grand March that started slow and as the music picked up the lines of couples turned more into a “crack the whip” march.
  • “Lipstick on our collar” won’t’ come out of your white shirt in time for church the next day.
  • The view of Globe is fantastic from the top of “G” hill even if the windows have fogged up.
  • You survived your Junior prom and had to start the whole process again for next year. It’s ok “I got this”
  • Waking up to greet a new day 50 years later and looking at your spouse next to you and remembering that she was your last prom date and that the magic of a Prom is still there.