Delmar Consolidated School

This is an article from the Clinton Avertiser, November 1920


(This is the first of a series of articles that will be published in this paper concerning the progress and achievement of the consolidated schools in Clinton county. The story today is somewhat in the nature of a history of pioneering. It deals with Delmar, the first consolidated school to be esablished in Clinton county and at the time quite isolated in this part of the state.)

In the fall of 1915 Superintendent Charles F. Martin, then at the head of the school system at Delmar, together with other progressive citizens of the community, began talking consolidation of schools in Bloomfield township. All phases of the question were discussed and explained as well as could be done and to complete the education campaign, Mr. A. C. Fuller then state inspector of schools, came to Delmar on the afternoon of March 21, 1916 and gave a complete discussion of consolidation. He was greeted by a large audience who were anxious to know about this new type of school. The election was called for March 22, which happened to be a very rainy, disagreeable day, however, a large vote was polled. The vote gave a majority of five in favor of establishing the consolidated school. The district consists of 19 sections of land all in Bloomfield township. This is the smallest district in the county. A board of directors was then elected consisting of O. W. Babcock, president; A. W. Kendall, J. F. Rossiter, Oliver Koon and W. H. Cook. H. M. Cassin was elected treasurer and J. P. Foley was appointed secretary.

Site First Problem.
The first important problem that confronted this new board was to provide a suitable place in which to conduct this school. The building then in use was not large enough to meet the needs of the Independent district of Delmar, alone. The small hall on the upper story was then being utilized as a recitation room and a small wooden shed used for manual training Domestic science was taught in the basement of the Methodist church. There was no provision for a gymnasium or much that is now considered essential to a good high school. After considerable deliberation and consultation with an architect it was decided to remodel the old building and use it for the grades and build a new high school building. In order to do this is seemed necessary to call for a bond issue of $25,000 which was at that time considered quite a large amount to ask for. Today $75,000 to $100,000 issues are considered just ordinary. With the money thus authorized the board managed to purchase five acres of land, remodel and repair the old buildings, purchase six busses, build and equip an eight-room high school building which stands as the pioneed in the building campaign which has spread over the county. Eight school buildings have been built or are now under construction since that time.

The building is located on the same lot with the old building which adjoins the five acres purchased for play ground and agricultural plots. It is modern and fire proof. The lower floor or basement is appropriated to the gymnasium and locker rooms with a hall or alcove along one side which provides a place for spectators at atletic contests or entertainments. On the second floor is the manual training and domestic science rooms. A spacious hall between these and the upper part of the gymnasium affords further space for spectaters to the gymnasium activities. this hall is shut off from the gymnasium by sliding partitions which are ordinarily closed. The upper floor is arranged in classrooms, an assembly room, and pricipal's office. The toilet are located on this floor. There are also two small rooms that are used for various purposes. One of them was used last year as a print shop, printing being one of the high school subjects taught during that year.

Work Runs Smoothly.
Mr. Martin continued to superintend the school for three more years and work has gone along smoothly. The board has always employed good instructors and a large number of pupils from other adjoining rural and town districts have taken advantage of the better schooling offered at Delmar. The school is established on the Six and Six plan, whereby the first six grades are conducted in the graded rooms, the upper six grades have departmental work and are seated in the high school assembly room. this year there are 152 students enrolled. Eight teachers are employed and eight busses transport 105 children. Three teachers have had full four-year-college courses, two have had two year's training. Six of the teachers have had special training for their work. The corps of teachers are: A. A. Siefert, superintendent; Mrs. A. A. Siefert, principal of high school; Ruth L. Kimball, Latin; Ethlyn Rossiter, home economics; Lyman Robinson, manual training; Minnie Sloan, primary; Ethel Wintergreen, intermediate; Mary Waters, grammar.

District is Progressive.
The school has had some very successful athletic and oratorical contests and there is a good community spirit shown. The school owns a lantern for use in school and for entertainments. Literary societies and class organizations lend favor to the success of the social phase of education. Two glee clubs and a school choir are also included in the program of broader development. The pay is supervised by the teachers and a coach is employed for the high school athletics. The school plant has been used for Farmers' Institutes and plans are underway for such a meeting this year.

Although a small district the success of the school is evidenced by the enthusiastic support and commendation given it by the patrons. The present school officers are: L. L. Kinner, president; J. P. Foley, secretary; H. M. Cassin, treasurer; Geo. H. Sidle, J. F. Rossiter, F. N. Lohmeier, O. W. Babcock. Four of these men were members of the original board and have given much thought and time to making the school a success.

This is from The Daily Times, Davenport, Iowa 31 Aug 1939:

Delmar Consolidated School Opens Monday
Delmar, Ia -- (Special) The consolidated school opens here Sept. 4.
The teachers are as follows: Superintendent, H. M. Drake; principal, James Larson; home economics, Miss Elizabeth DeCock, DeWitt; commercial, Miss Dorothy Vesely, Cedar Rapids; music, Miss Phyllis Rathbun, Pre-emption, Ill.; coach and seventh and eighth grades, Wilmer Lary; fifth and sixth grades, Miss Doris Watters; third and fourth grades, Miss Margaret McAndrew, Lost Nation; and first and second grades, Miss Hildred Nerhus, Calamus.
Rural school teachers are as follows: Franklin independent, Miss Flossie Petersen; Wilson independent district, school No. 1, closed; school No. 2, Miss Renolda McDermott; school No. 3, Miss Martha Bennis, and Riggs school, Miss Loretta Powers.
The following teachers will leave during the next few days for the locations: Miss Evelyn Foley and Miss Ethel Wintersteen to Audubon; Miss June Bollinger to Keithsburg, Ill.; Miss Janet Goodjohn to Mt. Vernon, and Miss Irma Steen to Marion.