Kansas One Room
School House Project

Kansas ORSH list -- Miami County

The following information is taken directly from Swan River Museum, Family Histories and Stories of Miami County, Kansas, Miami County Historical Society, Publisher, 1987. The information was prepared by Nancy Kaiser for presentation here.

The settlers were eager to establish schools in Lykins (now Miami) County, Kansas Territory as early as 1858. The first petition was dated December 11, l858, and the school district was to be located in the vicinity of New Lancaster in Miami Township. The school district was organized in the spring of 1859. After Kansas became a state on January 29, 1861, the school districts were numbered and in some cases the boundaries were changed. The first school district in the county which was established at New Lancaster became District No. 1. The last one teacher school district to organize was Emerson, District No. 104, on October 13, 1906.

Teachers of the one teacher schools in the early days were issued a certificate if they could pass some kind of an examination. The first record of a certificate being issued was to B. J. Sheridan, October 31, 1873.

The teacher often taught grades 1 through 9 or 10. There was usually a large enrollment. It was quite common for the enrollment to be 60 students and sometimes even more. Ages of the students ranged from five years to 20 years.

There were usually two terms of school, call the fall terms and the spring term. Later a school term was either six, seven, eight, or nine months. Then for accreditation of the schools, the length of term went from eight to nine months.

Salaries of teachers were quite varied. A male teacher always received a higher salary than a female teacher. If a teacher could not stay at home, he or she would board with a family in the district.

Prior to 1861 there were a few subscription schools. On that was famous historically, was the Judge Roberts School. It was located in the southeast part of Stanton Township. The charges were $3.00 per child for the school term. The teacher, usually a male, received a small salary, He would board with the various patrons for a period of two or three weeks, then move to the home of another family.

As time went by, some of the school districts started either consolidating or annexing. By 1948, the State Department of Public Instruction was urging the districts to consolidate, a step they deemed important in order to give the students a better education. Some schools were forced to closed because the enrollment dropped below ten pupils and the school would not be accredited. A bill, based on the recommendations of an educational survey, was passed by the 1963 session of the Kansas Legislature. This new state law required each county in the state to begin action on reorganization and unification of its existing school districts. This was the beginning of the end of the rural school, the learning center for many rural children for over 100 years in Miami County.

District No. 1 (New Lancaster) Miami Township The district was organized about the time the plat of New Lancaster was filed in the Register of Deeds office just prior to 1858. On December 11, 1858, the first petition was filed for a school. A deed from J. M. Carpenter, M. A. Carpenter, C. C. Carpenter and Joseph H. Carpenter was recorded and it included Lot 1 in Block 0. The first school year was taught by Mrs. Cyrus Shaw in 1858.

The first schoolhouse in Miami County was built in New Lancaster in 1859-1860. The men went to the woods, felled the trees, sawed the logs and hewed them off with four square sides. Then they put them together with wooden pins. All the work was donated. Members of the elected school board were Rev. William H. Huffman, director; William Karr, treasurer, G. H. Hume, clerk.

Some of the teachers who taught at New Lancaster prior to 1870 were Maggie Haney, A. J. Cotting, J.J. Bannister, Clara Ellis, John Reed and Russell Elliott.

The first log schoolhouse had no inside walls or ceilings. Seats for the pupils were puncheons, which were made from big logs sawed lengthwise, with holes bored in the bottom for legs. A common table served as a desk for the teacher. One blackboard, about 2 1/2 x 4 feet, served the entire school. Chalk was not very plentiful and it came in large lumps.

Church services were held there on Sundays.

In the late 1860's, there was a flourishing literary society at New Lancaster. Among the debaters at that time were Samuel Jackson, Ezekiel Downing, John Heraty, John M. Carpenter, R. J. Hiner, "Squire" Karr and David Smith. Also enjoyed were the occasional spelling school and the evening singing school.

The first log schoolhouse was replaced with a new building in 1879. D. M. Martin had the contract and was paid $1,047> An article in the county newspaper stated-"The new schoolhouse at New Lancaster, consisting of two school rooms and an anteroom was built at a cost of $1,300. The district has no bonds which speaks well for New Lancaster and surroundings." One of the two rooms was upstairs and high school classes were taught there in 1913 and 1914. Teachers were Henry Fessenden and Mary Hickman.

With improving conditions for the settlers came better things in the country school - ceilings on the inside and weather-boarding on the outside, patent seats with desks and ore books such as McGuffey's readers, Ray's arithmetic, Monteid's geography and Murray's grammar.

Through the years many improvements were made on the building. An addition provided bathrooms and a hall with a storage closet.

The school continued to be the center for community interest and activity. Some of the events enjoyed by the children and adults were school programs and box suppers, ball games, Christmas programs where Santa Claus always made an appearance and last-day of school picnics.

To the sorrow of everyone in the community, the school was forced to close in 1966 a result of the unification law passed by the state Legislature. Part of the district was placed in Louisburg USD, No 416, part of it in Paola USD, No. 368 and part of it in LaCygne USD No. 362.

School District No. 1 at New Lancaster became just a memory for those who had loved being a part of it for so many years. The building is no longer standing, but a plaque set in rock from the old schoolhouse foundation bearing the inscription, "Site of School District No. 1 First public school in Miami County 1859-1966 now stands in its place.

Date of Land Deed - Land Donor
1 New Lancaster School 1859-1860 New Lancaster
2 North Victory 1869 - D. W. and Hannah Studebaker Richland
3 Marysville 1868 - W. T. and Carrie McDaniel Marysville
4 Six Mile 1868 Marysville
5 Number Five School 1905 - James A. Binkley Sugar Creek
6 Harmony 1872 - J. Pickering and wife Osage
7 Indianapolis 1865 - Elisha and Mary E. Brenson Osawatomie
8 Cresent Hill 1868 - Charles Mendenhall, minor Osawatomie
9 Fairview 1863 - John and Frances Walter Osawatomie
10 Pleasant Valley, Clark Valley 1867 - Johnson and Harriet M. Clark Mound
11 Antioch 1899 - Mary E. Stringer Richland
12 Plum Creek 1866 - James F. and Mary A. Bell Valley
13 Green Valley 1867 - Samuel H. and Rhoda Hauser Osawatomie
14 Osawatomie 1911 - Henry Ott Osawatomie
15 Circle Grove 1863 - Nathan and Harriett Childers Middle Creek
16 Bucyrus 1892 - E. H. Kirby Ten Mile
17 Cedarvale or Starry 1905 - Albert W. and Mary J. Tilton Wea
18 Oak Grove 1891 - William and Minnie B. Kettler Miami
19 Franklin 1876 - Wm. and Mary C. Cameron Sugar Creek
20 East Liberty 1872 - S. R. and H. B. Smith Osage
21 Paola City or South School 1871- W. G. and Anna Krutz Paola
21 Paola North School 1871- Baptiste and Mary Ann Peoria Paola
22 Mound Creek 1890 - record of appraisal only Mound
23 Joint (Maple Grove) 1860 - Nicolase E. Green and Wife Stanton
24 Washington 1870 - James W. and Martha E. Dixon Sugar Creek
25 Stockwell 1900 - No Record of Deed Stanton
26 Walnut Grove Date not noted- S. S. and Martha Olney (Sr.) Ten Mile
27 North Pleasant Ridge 1863 Marysville
28 Oak Grove 1874 - Orson P., George H., and Frances A. Stockwell Stanton
29 Fontana Grade School 1900 - Lowe Osage
30 Rock Creek

1868 - Built by George Andrews, Thomas Rowland, John T. Rowland; Deeded 1892- Wm and Flora Thomas;1911 - Thomas and Cora Pool

31 Jordan 1896 - Mr.&Mrs James W. Mullins Osawatomie
32 Prairie Bell 1883 - B.F. and Elizabeth Pullam; Elizabeth S. Anderson Richland
33 Mission No record of deed Miami
34 Stanton 1882, Phillip and Nancy Haigler Stanton
35 Osage Valley 1870 - John F. Bradberry Valley
36 Poplar Ridge 1873 - Pearson and Euphema Carmean Richland
37 Union 1873- E.H. and J.E. Hunting Marysville
38 Louisberg Grade School 1881 - B.S. Doyle Wea
39 McNelly 1888 - Nancy S. Taylor, a widow Middle Creek
40 Spring Valley 1872 William and Rosela Shaw Middle Creek
41 Centennial 1880 - Saida Nicholson Richland
42 Wea 1864 - John Blanchon and wife Wea
43 Baxter or Rocky Comfort 1879 - Smedly Darlington Mortgage, Miles and Elizabeth Baxter Middle Creek
44 East Valley 1867 - Eord Mahnken, 1871 - Wm and Oliva Walters Valley
45 Hawkeye 1885 - William M.and Celia S. Fleharty Miami
46 Lone Star 1874 - R. R. and Margaret Seymour Marysville
47 Baker (date not noted) - Horatio and Margaret C. Massey Paola
48 Star 1905 - Wm J. Shannon Sugar Creek
49 Vickers 1869 - C. D. Millis Paola
50 Chesbro 1884 - Mathew Atkinson Marysville
51 Debrick 1887 - W. H. and Mary M. Wilhoite Osage
52 Cole 1918 - land given through condemnation and appraisement Ten Mile
53 Union 1936 - Dewitt and Cora M. Courtney Brown Sugar Creek
54 Hillsdale Grade School No information available Marysville
55 Willow Branch 1878 - E. B. Prindle Valley
56 Wild Creek 1903 - S. F. Williams and wife Stanton
57 Union Valley 1869 - John R. Everett Osawatomie
58 Scotts Valley 1870 - Henry and Julia Atwell Osawatomie
59 Sunny Ridge 1875 - Israel Marquis Miami
60 Richland No deed recorded Marysville
61 Pony Creek 1875 - T.S. and Marcha R. Magill Wea
62 No Information    
63 Lone Elm Quit Claim Deed - Frank Loomer Richland
64 Elm Grove No Record of Deed Ten Mile
65 Bellview 1871- Daniel S. Bell Middle Creek
66 Glendale No Deed Recorded for School Ten Mile
67 Pleasant Ridge 1870 - Lease for one acre from James Sweeting Marysville
68 Beaver Creek 1872 - Levi and Eliza Hodges Middle Creek
69 Centerpoint 1874 - P.W. and Caroline Pitman Middle Creek
70 Jt. Stony Point Information lists as Linn County Not Known
71 Walnut Creek 1870 - William J. and Huldah J. Nicholson Paola
72 Snake Den No Record of Deed for School Wea
73 Pleasant Ridge/Jingo 1879 - David H. and Cynthia Sanders Sugar Creek
74 Buzzard Roost /Northeast 1932 - James M. and Maggie Houston Wea
75 Smith 1870 - Benjamin and Lucy A. Smith Sugar Creek
76 Centennial 1916 - Edward and Ellen Sloan Middle Creek
77 Cottonwood 1872 - Henry M. Sanford Middle Creek
78 Somerset 1872 - Somerset Town Company Middle Creek
79 Ten Mile No Record of Deed to Land Marysville
80 80 Maple Grove Miami
81 Mound Valley 1872- S.B. and M.A. Cowell Stanton
82 Cottonwood 1872 - lease given by James J. Patton Marysville
83 Moore 1875 - Joseph Moore and wife Wea
84 Independence No Record of Deed for School Mound
85 Highland No date available - believed given by Azberger family Valley
86 Jt. West Windy No Record of Deed for School Richland
87 Spring Ridge No Record of Deed for School Stanton
88 North Windy 1873 - Peter N.and Catherine E. Wingert Richland
89 Rose Valley No Record of Deed for School Mound
90 Mobley No Record of Deed for School Miami
91 Mount Pleasant 1891 - William H. Short Richland
92 Pony Corner 1879 - J. H. and Mary A. Bruner Osage
93 Keenan No Record of Deed for School Wea
94 Deer Creek 1882- David F. and Susan A. Day Mound
95 Garfield 1883 - J. T. and Narcissus C. Chamberlin Richland
96 Rock Hill 1887 - Matilda J. Schroll Richland
97 Willow Ridge or Black 1891 - Phoebe A. Black Miami
98 Wagstaff 1887 - M. F. and Juliett Swan Ten Mile
99 Dalton 1886 - Joseph and Hanorah Dalton Osage
100 Beagle 1891 - J. M. Walthall, President, and C. T. Bayha, Secretary, of Beagle Town Company Mound
101 Davenport or Possom Holler 1891 - John D. and Sarah L. Davenport Middle Creek
102 Peoria Valley 1900 - Vines and Henrietta Jennings Marysville
103 Victory 1905 - G. D. Wesner Osawatomie
104 Emerson No Record of Deed Wea

Friday, February 6, 2004 10:17 PM

| About | Schools | Library
Gallery | ORSH List | Links | Email

Old Elsmore -- Douglas County

Spring Valley -- Geary County

Copyright 2001-2007 All Rights Reserved