For more than 100 years, St. Mary's Catholic School has stood between West Sixth and West Seventh Street, but for the last 15 of those years, the building has been mostly vacant.
It served as a place to hold religious education classes, and group functions.
After patching up the roof, several times over many years, the church decided it was time to take the old building down. Initially, members of the Oswego community were opposed to the idea of tearing it down, but they were told it would be almost financially impossible to renovate the building.
Joseph Murabito went to the school in the 1930's. "B
ack in the 30's and before the second world war we had very small classes 17
to 18 kids, 20 kids that's all we had in a class, after the war then they had 60 to 70 kids," says Murabito.
Other parishoners say these memories are meant to be kept in their hearts - not inside a building.
Some of these memories were found inside a time capsule placed into the cornerstone of the building in the early 1900s. Articles from the Oswego Palladium and the Oswego Times were found inside about the catholic school.
"It caused quite an uproar in the city I have to say and I think a lot of it is just built in sentiment and we all look back at our childhood and good experiences in our lives and the things that really help form us as human beings with great affection," says Hogan. "There was a nice letter written here in this beautiful handwriting, it gives a lot of information about the pastor at the time and the associate pastor. The names of the first sisters who first taught here. They say there were nine grades including kindergarten."
Moving forward, the church wants to add a recreation center to hold meetings, and be used for activities. The church says this would be handicapped accessible.