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History of Hickory Grove School - Marion Township


The Hickory Grove School house became a reality when John Faris and his wife deeded ¾ of an acre of ground to the Board of Directors for $5.00 as a school site. The directors were Henry K. Penney, J. Miles Goodman and A.C. Gaines.

The school house was built in the fall of 1853. It was 18x24 and was constructed from hewn timbers from trees in the surrounding grove. It had 12” square oak sills and the door was located at the south end. An addition to the building was constructed of rough lumber and was located on the south side of the building. This addition contained shelves and hooks to hang the students coats and space for their dinner buckets and overshoes.

When the school was completed, the roads were in bad condition and it was impossible to get a team and wagon to Mt. Pleasant to bring the heating stove to the school to keep the building warm for the students…[Therefore] the stove was carried from Mt. Pleasant by man power. Eight men volunteered and by the use of big hand spikes, they worked in shifts, four men carrying the load alternately, and moved the stove to the school.

In 1872, a new and larger building was erected. It was 26 ft. x 32 ft. with three windows on each side and two doors on the east end. It was plastered and wainscoted with a blackboard in the east end between the doors. The desks and benches faced the east. It was heated with a wood stove in the center of the building.

The largest number of scholars at one time was 55. When the school closed in June 1939, there were only four enrolled scholars. In 1946, the directors sold the school grounds at private sale. The school house was sold at an auction.

[Excerpts from “Mt. Pleasant News”, October 17, 1970. Hickory Grove by Helen Virden]

Contributed by Pat White, Sept 2020.

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