NEW CANAAN — A half-century ago this week, Easter hams were 55 cents a pound, “The Addams Family” was not yet in reruns, protestors in Danang marched to denounce the South Vietnamese and American policies, and parents gathered at South School for a discussion on raising children during a time of rebellion.

Philip Rose told the panel it was difficult to get respect from kids, and that he had to close down the YMCA seventh- and eighth-grade canteen for a week because he couldn’t get kids to stop dancing the “wrap around.”

The Rev. William Byrne said there was definitely less respect than in the past, possibly because of modern psychology, the talk of self- expression, and because parents were afraid to say no to their 2-year-olds.

“To have respect for someone, you have to know them,” Byrne told the crowd, adding that was difficult for children because many fathers in New Canaan were commuting to New York.

Parents agreed in a questionnaire they completed that the proper attire for children was “neat and clean.”

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1966

Civil unrest swept the nation, even in New Canaan.

Walter Schalk said some parents came to a parents night event dressed in clothes he “wouldn’t even garden in.”

Byrne warned against judging people by their attire, and said he knew good boys who had gotten in trouble for no other reason than how they were dressed. He said some youngsters were just looking for status.

Saxe School Principal Norman Hunt said clothes were a symbol of rebellion, and that there were far worse and more dangerous ways of doing that.

At other meetings this week in 1966, The town budget for the upcoming fiscal year was being hashed out in meetings at Town Hall. It looked likely to rise to $5.3 million from $4.8 million.

Thane Grauel