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Van Wert, Ohio Chapter Ohio Genealogical Society

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Western Ohio Normal School

Middlepoint, Ohio

  Middle Point School

"It will be remembered that after graduation at our excellent Union School, pupils are promoted to the Normal where they receive instructions free of charge until twenty-one years of age. Such inducements as these should be noted by parents who have children to educate as they are unexcelled by any institution in the land." [Van Wert Bulletin, 6 Aug 1886]
The Western Ohio Normal School was a private venture founded in 1885 by the citizens of Middle Point with Professor W. F. Hufford, of Ada, as the first principal. The one-room schools were great, but they were not always college preparatory. The Normal School provided a wonderful opportunity for those students who wanted to go on to universities to get the credentials needed to enter higher education.

The building, located on Mason & Normal Streets, was a handsome three story brick structure, 48' x 52', constructed at a cost of $17,000. The two lower stories were divided into convenient classrooms while the upper story was a large auditorium. It was equipped throughout with every modern facility for giving the student comprehensive and practical knowledge in every branch and department.

Courses offered included English grammar, physics, higher mathematics, Latin, Greek, practical arithmetic, algebra, geography, orthography, music, vocal culture, and practical business.

The terms commenced as follows: Winter term, first week in January; Spring term, second week in March; and the Summer term, third week in May. Cost of room, board, and tuition for the term often weeks varied over the time period from "free" in the beginning to $15, then $22.50, and finally $25 during 1902.

It was said that the educational circles of Van Wert compared favorably with those of any county in the state, due in part to the Normal School at Middlepoint. It was one of the most efficient and progressive schools in the country and repidly gained friends and patrons all over this section.
(Source: Program booklet, Van Wert Annual Banquet, November 1, 1997.)

This page prepared by Donald L. Kear.

Wednesday, 29 Jun 2005 last update