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Stories from the "The Ridge" Community of Warren County

The Ridge School

- Just to the north on the east side of old 48 we come to The Ridge School.

On the 26th day of June in the year one thousand and eight hundred and thirty nine for 25 cents Joseph Brandenburgh, and his wife Sarah, turned over l/4 of an acre of land to be used for a school building. The indenture turned over to Silas Hutchinson, Nicholas Scott and John Benham, directors of Fractional District No. 1 of Turtle Creek Township and No. 3 of Union Township the land for use as a school building but to be returned to the Brandenburghs if not used for a school.

On October 25, 1851, an agreement was signed for building of the Ridge School between Zimri Stubbs, the builder, and John Hatfield and Peter Drake, directors of School District no. 3 of Union Township, $549 to be paid on January 1, 1852.

The one-room white building continued as a school until late in the 1930s. In the intervening years, not only was excellent education provided for countless children from the entire Ridge, but the entire community also congregated around school activities, such as Halloween parties, Christmas plays, last day of school picnics.

Most of the teachers were women, but a few men's names appear in the list of those in charge over that period of almost a hundred years. Around 1900 the annual teacher's salary was about $40 a month. Members of the community alternated serving as clerks and treasurers of the school board. I well remember that my father, Harry Lollar, was clerk during the years I attended school there because every time some one misjudged his throwing arm in playing Anthony Over and broke one of the large windows it was my painful task to have to go home and tell my father that another big pane of glass had to be replaced.

Chuck Griffen kindly dug into Warren County Genealogical Society files and gave me copies of enrollment sheets for the last 10 or 12 years the school was in operation. At least four names on those lists - Laurine Cochran, James Cochran, Jean Cochran Pelz and Katherine Lollar - are here tonight. The last year for which I have the enrollment sheet - 1936 - has 29 names on it, representing 13 families. Four of the children were named Brandenburgh..

Late in the 1940s the property was acquired by Virgil and Esther Pursley Rapp, who lived in the school house while they built a house right next to it. When the new residence was completed, the school house was torn down.

next - French, Lollar & Tingle

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This page created 27 October 2004 and last updated 17 May, 2005
© 2004 Katherine Lollar Rowland & Arne H Trelvik  All rights reserved