The following material was originally contained in the Jefferson County School News Vol. 2, No. 7 dated April 1976 and graciously provided by its Editor, Mary Stocks.
In 1976 Jefferson County School News was a monthly publication sponsored by the Board of Education as a public service to Jefferson County residents.
Superintendent - Harold L. Pickens
President of the Board - Richard Neal
Editor - Mary Stocks
Special thanks to the following people who so willingly supplied information to the editor of this paper for this special publication:
Mrs. Beverly Huyett, Mrs. Norval Johnson, Mr. James Ernest Watson, Mr. and Mrs. James Grantham,
Mrs. Margaret Kilmer, Mrs. Caroline Wesco, Mrs. Virginia Burns, Mrs. Holmes White, Mrs. Nancy Sardone, Mr. Lyle Tabb, Mr. James Snyder, Miss Edna Farnsworth, Mrs. Gertrude Rowland, Mr. Charles Whittington, Miss Shirley Macoughtry, Mrs. Margaret Banks, Mrs. Georgia Timbers, Mrs. James Locke, Mrs. Louise Bradley, Mrs. James Strider, Mrs. Carrie Strider Lynn, Mrs. Marianna Smallwood, Mr. Howard Bush, Mrs. Doris Moten, Mrs. W. L. Barron, Mrs. C. H. Hamilton, Mrs. Edna Pifer.
Jefferson County Public Schools
Kabletown/Middleway District School History
Kabletown School - 1885
Pictured is the home of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Rowland of Kabletown, but the building was once the Kabletown Graded School which was built in 1885.
The home is located directly across from the ruins of the Old Stone Church. The school was built on a lot purchased by the Board from a Mary Wilson for $100. Originally it was a one-room school, but a partition was later added.
The school was used until 1915 when it was replaced by a new brick school still standing today in Kabletown. In 1916, the school was sold for $446 to Elmer Roderick who remodeled it for use as a home.
Kabletown School - 1915
This two-room brick school was built in 1915 for white students of the Myerstown-Kabletown area. It was used continuously until 1971 when it was replaced by South Jefferson Elementary.
In 1875, the first known school in Myerstown for black students was built on a lot purchased from a Fisher A. Lewis. No longer standing today, the school was located on the left, one mile out of Myerstown on the Myerstown - Rippon road. Today the home of James King is located on the approximate site of the school.
The school was used until 1936 when the students were transferred to Eagle Avenue. It was sold the same year to a Charles Sims for $170.
The Myerstown School for white students was built in 1877 on a lot purchased from a Henry Smith for $130. The school still stands today and is used as a private residence. It is the third house on the right out of Myerstown on the Myerstown- Rippon Road.
Myerstown White School - 1877
The school was closed in 1915 when the new Kabletown brick school was completed. It was sold in 1916 for $420 and is owned today by Roosevelt Green who rents it to Mrs. Doris Moten.
The first known school for white students in Rippon was built in 1874 at the fork of the road leading from Rippon to Myerstown. It was a one-room school built on a lot purchased from a N. S. White.
In 1900, the school became the Rippon Colored School, and white students moved over to a new brick school which still stands today just outside Rippon on the Rippon - Summit Point Road.
Rippon School - 1900
The new brick school was built on land purchased from a Margaret Timberlake for $200. Originally it was a one-room school, but a second room was added later.
The school was used continuously until 1971 when it was replaced by South Jefferson Elementary. From 1971 until 1975, it was used for kindergarten classes. Today the school is not used but is still the property of the Board of Education.
The Rippon Colored School remained in operation until 1939 when the students were transferred to Eagle Avenue School in Charles Town. The school was sold to the Savannah Baptist Church and was used as the minister's home until it was hit by a truck. The building was so damaged that it had to be torn down. A home was built on the same lot, and it, too, was demolished by a truck. Today another new home has been built on the same site.
Wheatland School of the Kabletown District was built in 1911 on the Wheatland Road. It operated until 1933 when it was consolidated with Summit Point School. In 1934, it was sold to a Mr. Melvin for $265. Today the former school is the residence of Samuel Cook.
SUMMIT POINT SCHOOLS
Although there were probably earlier schools in Summit Point, the first school which can be documented was built in 1887 on the same lot on which the brick school still stands today in the small community. The land for the school was purchased from A. P. Thompson for $10.
This early school, situated closer to the Methodist Church, was really two buildings. A stone building faced the road and behind it, connected by a covered walk-way, was a wooden building.
The upper grades were housed in the stone building with one teacher, and the lower grades were situated in the wooden building with a different teacher.
The boys and girls had separate playgrounds with a high board fence between.
According to Edna Farnsworth, a life-long resident of Summit Point and a student at this early school, the teachers were strict and allowed no time to be wasted. "When we finished a textbook and had no other to begin," says Miss Farnsworth, "we just started the same text over from the very first page." She recalls studying English history, United States history, West Virginia history, mathematics, agriculture, and bookkeeping in the upper grades. "We had no foreign languages or higher mathematics like algebra," says Miss Farnsworth, "but the instruction we had was thorough and complete."
James Snyder, another life-long student of Summit Point recalls that the upstairs of the Timberlake Store (now Jackson's Store), a building across from Skinner Poston's home, and a room in the Poston home were all used as temporary classrooms.
When the brick school was completed, the wooden structure of the old school was moved to Baker's Garage, but it no longer stands today.
Summit Point School - 1920
The new brick school was used until 1971 when it was replaced by South Jefferson Elementary. Today the school is owned by Chester Baggs of Richwood Hall.
In 1920, a four-room school was built on the same lot to replace the early school. Since the stone from the old school was needed for the foundation of the new school, the stone building was torn down first and the students were placed temporarily in various buildings in the community.
MOUNT PLEASANT SCHOOL
The building pictured is now the home of James Payton of Mt. Pleasant but it once was the Mt. Pleasant Colored School.
It was built in 1908 on land purchased by the Kabletown District Board of Education from a George Anderson for $100.
Mt. Pleasant School was used until 1936 when students were transferred to Eagle Avenue in Charles Town. That same year, the school was sold to a H. P. Light for $200.
It is believed there was an earlier school at Mt. Pleasant near the site of the school pictured.
Middleway Public School
Pictured are students of the Middleway Public School standing in front of the school which was built in 1893. It was a two-room building which replaced an earlier one-room school.
Both schools were located in the vicinity of the Full Gospel Pentecostal Church (originally the Protestant Methodist Church).
This picture, taken sometime between 1910 and 1917, was loaned to SCHOOL NEWS by Mrs. Nancy Sardone whose mother, Julia Barnes, was a teacher at Middleway School during this time.
Front row left to right are Harlan Watson, Albertus Brining, Lawrence Nicely, John Castleman, Robert Smith, Lyndon Janney, Lester Watson, Leonard Mason, Allen Lyne, Roy Swartz, Tom White, and Leonard White.
Second row: Page Moore Henry, Bernice Woods, Margaret Nicely, Nellie Pine, Eva Pine, Mary Myers Whittington, Edna Nicely Pifer, Bruce Castleman, Pearl Castleman, Mary Janney, and Frank Pine.
Third row: Harry Nicely, Viola Underwood, Blanche Pine, Corinne Underwood Kisner, Dulcet' Cain, and Margaret Snyder. Back row: teachers Julia Moore Barnes and Lula Jennings Shaull.
The two-room school was built by a contractor named C. C. Huyslett of Summit Point at a cost of $812. The school was used until 1925 when it was replaced by the brick school which still stands in Middleway and which is now the private residence of Mr. and Mrs. A. M. Linton.
In 1926, the Board of Education considered moving the old school to Kearneysville to use as an addition to the overcrowded Linwood School, but the move was never made.
A Teacher Looks Back
Mrs. Julia Barnes wrote this article about her teaching experience at the Middleway School from 1910-1917. The article was published in the Pennsylvania Farmer in 1952. Mrs. Barnes' daughter, Mrs. Nancy Sardone of Kabletown, found the clipping in her mother's scrapbook and shared it with SCHOOL NEWS.
In 1910 I made my debut as a public school teacher in West Virginia. After passing the state uniform examination, I received an appointment as primary teacher in a two-room school in a village - population about 200.
The school house was on a hill overlooking the hamlet with a beautiful view of the distant mountains in the west - the only thing pleasing to the eye.
My home was in the county seat so I boarded the five school days with families who were not patrons for $10 a month. Of course my salary was $30 a month, later raised to $35 and then $40. Believe it or not, I managed to save enough to see me through the vacation months.
Each winter we held an oyster supper in the town hall to raise money for supplementary readers. This was work but fun and a good crowd turned out in spite of the weather. Fifty cents for all you could eat.
After these seven years I joined the graded school faculty in the county seat where I did second grade work, with a class of 50, for three years. This was easy. When (changed my profession in 1920 1 was receiving $80 monthly, but I had less because the dollar was not worth as much.
Middleway School - 1925
This three-room brick school was built in Middleway in 1925 at a cost of $4883. It was used continuously until 1971 when it was replaced by South Jefferson Elementary near Summit Point. Today the school is owned by Mr. and Mrs. A. M. Linton. They use it both as their home and as a ceramic shop.
Middleway Black School
Pictured is the home of Virginia Burns in Middleway, but the building was once the school for black students. It was built in 1908 on land purchased by the Board from a N. R. Roberts for $100.
However, there was at least one earlier black school in Middleway. A school was built in 1870 on a lot next to the 1908 school, but it is no longer standing.
The building pictured is on the right, across from the power plant, on the road leading to Summit Point.
Maintaining regular attendance at the school must have been a problem. The 1926 Board minutes record that parents in the area were notified that unless their children started attending the school, it would be closed.
The school was closed in 1929 when the students were transported to Linwood in Kearneysville.
Woodbury School was located on the right, one and one-half miles from Leetown on the Leetown - Kearneysville road. It is believed that the school was erected in 1887.
Almost directly across the road was the site for an earlier school which was probably built in 1868 on a lot purchased from Isaac Strider for $5.
However, there must have been an even earlier school in this same area according to an article which appeared in the Jefferson Republican Sesquicentennial Edition on September 20, 1951.
The article was written by a Mary H. Cockrell who had been a resident of Leetown in the early 1850's. An excerpt from the article is reprinted below.
The time in the history of Leetown, about which I shall write briefly was 1854 and 55, when Franklin Pierce was President of the United States, when the Crimean war was devastating southern Europe, and the antislavery agitation was embittering sectional animosity in our country.
"I was a schoolgirl then, attending school in a long log building near the pike, less than half a mile North of the Espicopal Church.
"Two tenplate stoves, burning wood for fuel, were needed to heat the school room in winter.
''Thomas Beall was our teacher.
"The school at that time was a public institution, the first of the kind having been established in this country in 1849. My school mates came from families for miles around. All came on foot; automobiles and buggies were unknown among them."
The school described, less than half a mile north of the Episcopal Church, would have been in the same general area as the school on the Strider property and the Woodbury School.
Woodbury was discontinued as a white school when the new brick school was built in Leetown in 1911. For two years, it was used as a school for black students and was finally closed in 1913.
The picture of Woodbury School was loaned to SCHOOL NEWS by Mr. and Mrs. Jack Huyett who own ''Woodbury,'' an old estate located close to where the school once stood.
Snow Hill School
Snow Hill School was built in 1897 and was located on the Charles Town - Leetown road. It stood on the right (coming from Charles Town) on the corner at the point where a side road leads to the county landfill.
The school was used until 1911 when it was replaced by the brick school still standing in Leetown. When the school closed, it was moved nearby to what was known as the County Poor Farm for use as a chapel.
The school still stands today on the farm and is used as a storage shed.
Leetown Wright School
Leetown Wright School – 1867
The children pictured were students at Wright School in Leetown around the early 1900's. The school stood past the entrance to the Isaac Walton League and next to the present home of Mrs. Nellie Owens.
The picture was loaned to SCHOOL NEWS by Mr. W. L. Barron of Shepherdstown who is one of the students pictured:
Front row are Ada Benner, Blanche Emery, Charles Bowers, Edith Hooe, Irene Emery, Ruth Bowers Barron (Mrs. W. L. Barron), Herbert Shull, Olive Bowers, George Bowers, and Annie Hooe.
Back row: Forest Watson, Stanley Benner, Ema Hooe, Edith Shull, Lelya Benner, Florence Licklider (teacher), Daisy Iselin, Mabel Coates, and Frank Watson.
Wright school was built in 1867 on a lot deeded to the Middleway District Board of Education from Daniel Wright for $30. The school remained open until 1911 when it was replaced by the brick school still standing in Leetown.
Leetown Graded and High School
In 1911 a new brick school was built in Leetown to replace Woodbury, Wright, and Snow Hill Schools.
The lot for the school was purchased from a I. H. Strider for $175. An architect was hired by the Middleway District Board of Education to draw up plans for the new two-room brick school. The contract was awarded to a F. 0. Trump for $2,368.
The Board also employed a superintendent who received three percent of the contract price to supervise the construction.
The new school was declared a graded school by the Board, and a principal was hired for $50 a month. The 1911 Board minutes record that the principal should be ''preferably
By 1912, the two-room school was too small for its enrollment. In 1913, a two-room addition was added, with Trump's contract of $3,275 again being accepted. The contract price included the installation of a heating plant.
After the addition was completed, the school became Leetown Graded and High School with a staff of four teachers. T. L. Yates became the principal and the teacher of the two year high school program.
In 1931, the high school program was no longer offered. Leetown Graded School continued to serve grades 1-8 and then later 1-6 until it finally closed in 1971 when it was replaced by North Jefferson Elementary. Today the school is owned by Dunaway Licklider.
Oak Grove School
Oak Grove School was built originally as a private school. It was located on what is now the James Grantham farm on secondary 1/13 off State Rt. 51 west (Child's Road). It is believed that the school was deeded over to the Middleway District Board of Education in 1868 for use as a public school.
The 1901 board meetings record paying James Grantham, the father of the present owner of the land, $13.50 rent per year for use of the school.
Oak Grove, no longer standing, was used until 1919. The picture above was loaned to SCHOOL NEWS by Shirley Macoughtry of Summit Point whose mother and father, Mr. and Mrs. Robert Lee Macoughtry, were students at Oak Grove.
There was a school for black students at Johnsontown, a small community on the Brownshop - Bardane road, but the date of its erection is unknown.
The school was located next to the present home of Charles Johnson in Johnsontown.
In 1924, the patrons of the area asked that the school be replaced because "the old log public school endangers the health and lives of our children especially in the winter months." However, the Board declined to take any action.
In 1929, according to the Board minutes, the nearby unused Wiltshire School was rented from the Charles Town District Board of Education for the Johnsontown students.
Although the Board minutes are not clear, it is believed that Wiltshire was rented for around two years and then the Johnsontown School was reopened.
In 1933, the Johnsontown School was closed, and the students were transferred to Linwood in Kearneysville.
The stone part of the Kearneysville School was built in 1872. It is believed, however, that there was an earlier school located nearby the school pictured.
According to the Board minutes of 1895, there was only one teacher with 15 students in the "upper room" and 18 students in the "lower room." In 1901 a second teacher was added.
The brick addition was built in 1906 by a F. 0. Trump for $1792. The school evidently had a large enrollment for by 1917, a third teacher was employed.
The school was used continuously until 1971 when it was replaced by North Jefferson Elementary.
It is believed that the first school built in Kearneysville for black students was in 1872 on land purchased from a Mr. Turner for $40.
According to the Board minutes of 1895, one teacher handled an enrollment of 45 students.
A new black school was built in 1899 on a lot purchased by the Board of Education from a G. T. Hodges for $150. The new school, called Linwood, was a two-room building, erected by a D. B. Gageby for $700.
Linwood was located in the area close to the railroad tracks reached by turning right at the end of the underpass.
In 1925, the patrons of Linwood petitioned the Board, requesting an addition for the school and the implementation of a two-year high school program.
The Board declined the request because the construction of a new school at Middleway was then underway. The Board considered moving the old Middleway School to Linwood to alleviate crowded conditions, but the move was never made.
Linwood was used continuously until 1948 when the Kearneysville students were transported to the new Eastside School in Shepherdstown. Linwood was sold in 1948 and is no longer standing.
A school for black students was built in 1884 at Jamestown, two and one-half miles southwest of Summit Point. It was built on land deeded to the Middleway District Board of Education by Abraham Doleman for $40.
According to Caroline Wesco of Jamestown, the school, no longer standing, was on the left (coming from Summit Point) and close to the road.
Jamestown School was closed in 1911.
The Swimley School still stands today on the Henry Smith farm on the Swimley Road. The school was built in 1891 and replaced an earlier school which was located on the same lot.
The school was built by a J. L. Clendening for $525. The 1891 Board minutes report that 20 new double desks at a total cost of $54 were purchased for the new school.
In 1933, Swimley School closed and the students were transferred to Summit Point School.
In 1934, the school was donated to Stanley Hardesty who owned the farm at that time. Until recently, the school has been used as a private dwelling.