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Full text of "School buildings and grounds in Nebraska"

LB 
3218 

N2N2 



Southern Branch 
of the 

University of California 

Los Angeles 

Form L 1 I -^J 



This book is DUE on the last date stamped below 



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School Buildings in Nebraska 

The illustrations in this publication have not been systematically 
collected, therefore they can hardly be said to be fairly representa- 
tive of the school buildings in the state. Requests for cuts or pho- 
tographs of school buildings were sent to all superintendents and 
principals in the state and w^ere published in the Nebraska Teacher. 
From the city superintendents many cuts were received, and they 
are used in this volume. County superintendents and village prin- 
cipals sent in many photographs of village and rural schoolhouses, 
fully three-fourths of which were available for use, and half-tone 
reproductions from them appear in this volume. 

The pictures of sod schoolhouses will attract instant attention, 
but we hope our readers will not jump to the conclusion that they 
are the common type of schoolhouse in this state or that they are 
common in all parts of the state. These pictures will prove as 
great a curiosity to many of our readers in eastern portions of the 
state as they are to the inhabitants of Greater New York. As will 
be seen by Statistical Table No. i, in the back of this volume, there 
were last year 464 sod schoolhouses in the state of Nebraska out of 
a total of 6,773 ; ^'^^ since 1893 the number of "soddies" has been 
steadily decreasing. Very few of the next generation of Nebras- 
kans will have the pleasure of attending school in a Nebraska sod 
schoolhouse. They might go to school in poorer buildings than 
one built of sod, however, for it is as warm in winter and as cool in 
summer as any ordinary schoolhouse, although some of our lady 
teachers do object to the fleas and vermin that sometimes infest 
such a building. Many of our sod schoolhouses are well finished, 
nearly all are floored and plastered, and many are finished around 
the doors and windows on the inside. Slate blackboards, patent 
desks, maps, charts, a school library, a globe and an international 
unabridged dictionary may be found in many of them. The better 
class of them have shingled roofs. A more complete description 
of several of these sod buildings accompanies the illustrations. 



8 SCHOOL nUII.niNGS and grounds in NEBRASKA 

Some parts of Nebraska liavc more sand than wood or stone, and 
so have the children. It is not strange when we consider the char- 
acter of our early settlers that they built schoolhouses when they 
built their homes, and of the only available material, — the sod 
of the prairie and sand-hill toughened and bound by the roots of 
the native grasses, cut out in squares and laid up in walls two feet 
or more in thickness. Nebraska will maintain the lowest per cent of 
illiteracy among the states of the Union if it is necessary to educate 
her chiUlren in dugouts, soddies. shanties, and log huts to do it. 

We believe the rural and village frame buildings illustrated to be 
fairly representative of the frame buildings throughout the state 
in country and town ; and the high school buildings, frame, brick, 
and stone, are an evidence of the pride that our cities take in their 
schools. 




DISTRICT SCHOOL No. 70, HALL COUNTY 




DISTRICT SCHOOL No. 51, HALL COUNTY 




DISTRICT SCHOOL No. '>i, CHERRY COUNTY 




DISTRICT SCHOOL No. CU, R(KK COUNTY 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA II 

The Country School 

The first requisite of a good school is a good teacher, it is true, but 
the best of teachers may be considerably handicapped by unfavorable 
environment, while the poorest teachers may do better work if they 
keep school in a well constructed, nicely furnished, well equipped 
schoolroom. 

We hear much of the improvement of m.aterial school conditions to- 
day, compared with fifty years ago. The veterans of the Civil War 
compare the beautiful brick buildings in which their grandchildren at- 
tend school with the log houses where they sat on rough-hewn logs 
with their faces to the wall and their backs exposed to the teacher and 
the long horizontal wood stove in the center of the room, in the '50's; 
but these comparisons are too broad and sweeping. The beautiful, 
well furnished schoolhouses of stone or of brick in our cities and towns 
should not be compared with the log schoolhouses of fifty years ago, 
nor even with the little red frame schoolhouse of that time. It is true 
there is a material improvement in schoolhouses generally, but the im- 
provement is greater and more general in city than in country. In the 
city more attention is now being paid to sanitary conditions and meth- 
ods of heating and ventilating, to lighting and seating, and to improved 
blackboards and charts and better maj s, adjustable window shades 
and curtains and desks, the arrangement of corridors and wardrobes 
and closets, etc. In the country the impxovement is less marked. 
There are still many rural district schoolhouses built on the two-by- 
three plan; width two-thirds of the length, a single room without entry 
or vestibule, two or three widely separated windows in each side, and 
a door in the center of one end. The blackboard is usually plaster 
painted black, scanty in amount, and the desks are double patent ones. 
The wood-box may sometimes be found in one corner of the school- 
room as of yore, but filled with cobs, though more commonly the 
outdoor coal shed takes its place. Occasionally both are lacking, and 
the coal and wood or cobs are dumped on the bare ground. The 
pump may or may not be out of repair, and too frequently the out- 
buildings are the same dens of vice and hell-holes of contamination 
and pollution they used to be. Trees and shrubbery are too often 
lacking. These sad conditions, though not universal nor even gen- 
eral in some parts of Nebraska, are altogether too common. They 
are the conditions we hope to improve. 



12 SCHOOL DUILDIXCS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

According: to the School Laws of Nehraska, the legal voters in 
tl'.c common school districts shall, at the annual meeting, determine 
by vote the number of mills on the dollar of assessed valuation 
which shall he levied for all purposes, except for the payment of 
hontleil indebtedness, which number shall not exceed twenty-five 
nulls in any year. A part of this twenty-five mills, not in excess of 
ten mills, may be used for the building, purchase, or lease of a 
>choolhouse in the district when there are no bonds voted for such 
purpose. The bonded indebtedness of a district shall not exceed 
five per cent on the dollar of the assessed valuation. Property in 
-Nebraska is asses.sed at so low a rate, — one-sixth or one-eighth its 
real value, — that these limitations often work a hardship on the 
poorer districts. However, it costs the district but little more to 
build a schoolhouse properly heated, lighted, and ventilated, than 
to construct one without providing for these essentials. It costs 
less to heat and ventilate a properly constructed schoolroom than to 
heat a poorly constructed one with no provisions for ventilation. It 
may cost the parents more in the payment of doctors' bills, of medi- 
cines, and loss of school attendance, if their children are compelled 
to attend school in a room neither heated nor ventilated properly. 
It may cost parents more for oculists' bills and eyeglasses if their 
children sit in rooms facing windows or with cross lights, or with 
an inadequate amount of natural light or with the same supple- 
mented by artificial light, than if they attend in a room lighted as it 
should be. School children cannot begin to do the amount of work 
in a schoolroom improperly heated, lighted and ventilated that they 
could do in a schoolroom with these conditions as they should be. 
This is not theory, but a matter of experience. Neither teachers nor 
pupils can concentrate their attention upon the matter in hand as 
they should, in an uncomfortable schoolroom. These poor condi- 
tions may not result in the general breaking up of the health of the 
teacher or pupils, but they may result in a gradual impairment of 
the health and a derangement of the nervous system that will result 
in permanent physical injuries. 

Teachers generally are easily influenced by their surroundings. 
There are a few noted exceptions, Mark Hopkins, for instance, that 
simply prove this rule. A log might serve him in lieu of a modern 
schoolroom, but it will not do for the average Nebraska school 
teacher. Children also are always influenced by the schoolhouse, 




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School buildings and grounds in Nebraska 15 

its surroundings and the interior. Our experience has always been 
that a school that was neat and clean in appearance was doing 
careful, thorough work, with excellent order prevailing, while a 
dirty, dingy, disarranged schoolroom was invariably a disorderly, 
inattentive, careless and slipshod school. If the aspect of the school 
premises is forbidding, it is not surprising that the children are 
reluctant to go to school and are pleased to get away again as soon 
as they can. There are too many school buildings and grounds in 
Nebraska whose appearance is apparently designed to encourage 
truancy. The condition becomes aggravated when the improve- 
ment of residences outruns the improvement of schoolhouses. Chil- 
dren are quick to notice contrasts and to make comparisons. They 
will compare their dusty, dirty, dingy, smoke-begrimed schoolhouse 
with its broken plaster, rusty stove and rough, knot-protruding 
floors, its broken, rattle-trap desks and dirty windows, with their 
mother's clean, neat, tidy kitchens, with their parents' homes where 
comforts and conveniences are multiplying, where plate glass win- 
dows, cedar trees and other evidences of prosperity and care and 
forethought attract one's eye as he drives from one schoolhouse to 
another. The appearance and conditions of the schoolhouse, in 
which our children spend one-half their waking hours every school 
day in the year, should be the equal of the same in our homes. 



l6 SCHOOL UUILHINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

The Sutherland Schoolhouse 
(See Frontispiece) 

This is a iiowly erected district schoolhouse, located about five 
miles west of Blair. It is located in district No. 20, Washington 
county, and was erected during the same year as the new Blair 
high school building, and by the same architect. 

In the persi)ective we see the north side with its six windows, and 
the west end with the entrance in the southwest corner. The pu- 
pils face an unbroken cast wall, with the strong, even light of the 
north entering from the left, and two smaller windows above the 
blackboard in the rear. Fresh air enters through a grating in the 
foundation wall near the steps, and is carried by a galvanized iron 
duct below the floor to an opening below the stove, where it is 
warmed and distributed. The foul air passes out through the reg- 
isters in the floor by the north wall and in the wall near the stove. 
This air heats the floor from below and the ceiling from above. 
The inlet and the outlets of the air are regulated by dampers. There 
are two rows of blackboard slates across the front wall, the upper 
one for the use of the teacher for copies, drills, etc. The teacher, 
from her natural position in the front of the room, may watch the 
pupils at the blackboard in the rear of the room and inspect their 
work, and at the same time "oversee" those at work in their seats. 
The wardrobe extends along the south side, is lighted by four wan- 
dows placed high in the wall, and is furnished with sixty double 
schoolhouse hooks, each with a numbered metal tag. 

Fig. I, a Model Plan, is the floor plan of this schoolhouse. Com- 
plete specifications, with ground plan, exterior views and w^orking 
drawings for the construction of this schoolhouse, are published 
on the following pages. 

Had the building been located on one of the three other comers 
formed by the intersection of the roads the entrance might have 
been in the southeast corner of the building instead of the south- 
west, and the pupils, after passing through the wardrobe, would 
then enter the rear of the schoolroom, and visitors would enter the 
front of the room from the entrance. The sunlight enters this school- 
room in the afternoon above the heads of the pupils. A door or 
window near the east end of the wardrobe, in the southeast corner 




School Room 



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SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 21 

of the building, would permit the early morning sunlight to stream 
across the schoolroom through the inner door. 

But this building, though not perfect, is the best country school- 
house in Washington county, and, we believe, in many Nebraska 
counties. It is substantial in construction and beautiful in interior 
finish. 

Since its completion two other rural schoolhouses have been 
erected in Washington county on the same general plan. The orig- 
inal plans of the Sutherland schoolhouse are now on file in the 
office of the State Superintendent of Public Instruction at Lincoln. 



A Rural Schoolhouse 



Brief Specif ica' ions for Wo-k and Material Required for the Erection of a One-room 

SchoDlfiouse, in Accordance with Accompanying Ground Plans, 

Elevations and Work ng Drawings 



The Original of this Building was Built in Dis'rict No. 20, Washington County, Nebraska. 
(See Frontispiece) 

This building may be erected in the eastern portion of the state, 
complete, for $1,000.00. The original plans are now on file in the 
office of the State Superintendent of Public Instruction at Lincoln. 

general conditions 
The Board. 

The Board reserves the right to reject any or all bids. The 
Board will superintend the work, through the Architect or an espe- 
cially appointed superintendent. The Board reserves the right to 
make any changes, omissions, or additions in and to the building, 
without voiding these specifications, the contract, or bond. 

The Board will recognize no extra work and will not pay for 
extra work, unless such work has been ordered beforehand by reso- 
lution of the Board. 

No alleged verbal agreement at variance with the drawings, 
specifications, etc., will be recognized. The Board will insure its 



M SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

equity in the builtlinc: from time to time as payments are made, but 
the Contractor must insure his interest therein at his own cost. 

Thk Contractor. 

The Contractor will be responsible for the buildinj until its ac- 
ceptance by the Board, and must make good all injuries sustained 
during construction from whatever cause. The Contractor must 
show receipts (if the Board elects to ask for them) before each 
payment. 

The Contractor must give a bond with two responsible sureties 
as provided by law, subject to the approval by vote of the Board. 

The Contractor must finally deliver the building whole, perfect, 
and clean, within the contract time, and must correct all defects dis- 
covered during the first month of use, unless the same are no fault 
of his. 

Excavation. 

The Contractor must visit the site and examine same. The height 
of the first floor will be given, and the Contractor must do all nec- 
essary excavation to bring the walls below frost. He must remove 
6 inches of the black earth under the building, to prevent decay of 
vegetation under the building. 

Brick Work. 

'J he entire brick work, including chimney, is to be built of good, 
hard, sound brick, to be laid straight and true, neatly pointed up and 
to be washed down upon completion. There is to be a 9-inch brick 
wall extending under all interior wood partitions, for the support 
of partitions and floor joists. 

The smoke flue is to be plastered on the inside and is to be 12 x 12 
inches in size; it is also to be plastered on the outside, where it 
passes through the ceiling and roof. 

All wood is to be kept from the flue i inch clear. Smoke flue is to 
have an 8-inch thimble for furnace pipe. 

Plastering. 

Lath all walls and ceilings with No. i white pine or cypress 
lath, with ^^-inch spaces, breaking joints every seventh lath. 

Plaster all walls and ceilings, including inside of teacher's closet, 
three coats; the first two coats to be hard plaster of an improved 
manufacture approved by the Board, and the last coat to be a Plas- 




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SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 2$ 

ter Paris finishing coat. All plastered corners are to be rounded. 
Care is to be taken that plastering which will receive artificial black- 
board is absolutely straight and true. 

The wall which will receive blackboard is to be plastered as 
above specified, as if no blackboard were to be used. If natural 
slate blackboard is used, the first two coats of plastering are to be 
put on ready for finishing coat, and the finishing coat behind natural 
slate blackboard is to be omitted. 

Plastering is to extend tight up against window jambs and door 
jambs and down to floor behind base everywhere, to make the 
building warm. 

Carpenter Work. 

Floor joists are to be 2 x 12 inch and ceiling joists 2 x 10 inch 
yellow pine, sound, dry and well-seasoned. All other framing 
lumber to be white pine or yellow pine, sound, dry and well-sea- 
soned. Joists and rafters are to be in one length. 

Valleys are to be in two pieces 2x8 inches each, thoroughly 
spiked together. Exterior studding is to be 2 x 6 inches, 12 feet 
long. Interior studding is to be 2 x 6 inches, 12 feet long. Wall 
plate for exterior walls is to be 8x8 inches halved and pinned at 
corners, and mortised for joists. All sills for interior walls are to 
be 2 X 8 inches. 

Plates for exterior studding are to be 2 x 6 inches, double, and 
plates for interior studding to be 2 x 6 inches, double. All corners 
and angles are to be built up solid, no lath to run through. All 
joists and studdings are to be 16 inches from center to center. 

Put double studding on each side of each door and window open- 
ing. Schoolroom floor is to have one row of cross bridging i x 3 
inches. 

Every pair of rafters is to have a 2 x 4 inch cross tie 8 feet 
long. The valleys will brace the roof in the other direction. 

Tower. 

Tower is to have bell deck, covered with I.X. tin, and to have 
3x3 inch scuttle, and also a scuttle in the ceiling of the school- 
room immediately under tower. 

The corner posts of the tower are to extend down to the top of 
ceiling joists and to be braced. Ceiling joists under inside tower 



2f* SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

jiosts arc to be treble, and tbe roof of tower is to be thoroughly 
cross-braced. 

Porch. 

Porch is to be built as shown, of white pine, with J^ x 4 inch 
white pine flooring, and to have white pine steps i^^ inch thick, 
with white pine railing and balusters. 

Ceiling of porch is to be first lined with roof sheathing, then to 
have one layer of straw paper, and then to be covered with ^ x 4 
inch white pine ceiling. 

Ventilation. 

The ventilating flue is to be lined up with ^ x 6 inch yellow 
pine ceiling, and is to extend from under side of floor joists to attic 
floor. On top of roof build a 12-inch globe ventilator of galvanized 
iron. 

The ventilating flue is to have sliding board in schoolroom so 
arranged as to close ofif the ventilating flue entirely when school is 
not in session. 

Below the second and fifth windows put a 10 x 10 inch ventilat- 
ing register in the floor. The foul air will then pass directly 
through these registers down between the earth and the floor 
towards the ventilating flue, pass up through the ventilating flue to 
the attic, and spread all over the attic ; tlience the air will pass out 
through the globe ventilator in the top of the roof. In the outside 
wall below the floor build an opening i foot 6 inches x i foot 6 
inches, and run a galvanized iron duct i foot 6 inches x i foot 6 
inches under the floor to the under side of the furnace. Under the 
furnace cut a hole in the floor 24 inches in diameter and permit 
the air to strike against the bottom of the furnace. Provide a 
tight door in the opening of the outside wall so the cold air may 
be shut off from the school when it is not in session. (An ordinary 
cast iron furnace costing about $45.00 f. o. b. is to be placed over 
the opening in the floor. The furnace is then to receive a galva- 
nized iron casing extending from the floor to the top of the furnace. 
The cold air will then strike the furnace, where it will be warmed, 
rise between the furnace and the galvanized iron casing and pass 
out into the schoolroom. The furnace, casing and smoke pipe will 
cost not to exceed $80.00 set in place.) 

By the above method the foul air leaves the room at about 68 or 



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SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 29 

70 degrees, will be drawn under floor and warm the floor, and it 
will be drawn through the ventilating flue to the attic, thereby 
warming the ceiling of the schoolroom. 

Sheathing. 

Cover all outside walls, entire roof, tower and entire floor with 
No. I sheathing. 

Paper. 

Cover sheathing on all outside walls with one layer of good 
building paper (not tar paper), and cover the entire roof sheathing 
with one layer of tar paper. All paper is to be lapped 2 inches. 

Shingles. 

Cover the entire roof and tower with first clear red-wood or 
cypress shingling, laid 4 inches to the weather. Each shingle is to 
have two galvanized iron shingle nails. 

The shingles are to be dipped for two-thirds their length from 
the bottom up, into best quality Creosote Shingle Stain. 

Tin. 

Valleys and bell deck are to be lined with I.X. tin 14 inches wide. 

Ridges. 

Ridges are to be formed with two ^ x 5 inch boards. 

Cornice. 

Cornice is to be as shown on drawing. The eaves are to be 
lined with paper and "« >^ 4 inch white pine ceiling. 

Outside Finish. 

Water table is to be lys inches x 9J/ inches high, to have i^s x 3 
inch cap and % quarter round underneath corner board. Window 
casings and door casings are to be i^^ inches thick and 5 inches 
wide. 

Window sills are to be i)4 inches thick. Outside window casing 
is to be so placed as to permit of storm sash at a later day. Care 
is to be taken that the building paper extends under all water 
tables, corner boards, door and window casings. 

Siding. 

All outside studdings are to be covered with narrow siding with 
3^2 inch lap. Siding is to be white pine or red wood. 



30 school buildings and grounds in nebraska 

Interior Finish. 

Cover all floors with % x 4 inch tongucd and grooved No. i 
yellow pine flooring ; all joints to be smoothed after laying. As 
soon as laid the floor is to receive one coat of boiled linseed oil 
mixed with 25 per cent turpentine. 

Ladder, 

Provide a ladder from attic to bell deck. 

DooRS. 

The outside door is to have double strength glass in upper panel. 
It is to be made of two thicknesses of white pine ly^ inch each, 
making the door 234 inches thick, to be paneled and flush moulded. 
All inside doors are to be No. i white pine stock doors with five 
panels, hand smoothed for oil finish. 

The two teacher's closet doors are to be ij/i inches thick, to have 
three panels each. 

Jambs. 

Outside door jamb is to be i^ inches thick, rebated. Inside door 
jamb is to be % inch thick, and is to have door stops. 

Teacher's Closet. 

Teacher's closet is to have seven shelves 14 inches wide, to be put 
on ratchets, so as to make them movable. 

Windows. 

Windows are to have lys inch yellow pine pulley stiles, i^ inches 
thick, to be filled with D. S. (double strength) glass. 

Sash is to be hung to cast iron weights with 34 i^ich Sampson or 
Silver Lake cord, to have 234 inch anti-friction axle pulleys, and 
all windows are to have i}i inch stool. 

Casing. 

Doors and windows are to have J^ x 5 inch casing with plinth at 
bottom and to be mitered on top. 

Base is to be % x 7 inches, to have J^ x 3 inch mould on top 
and quarter round at bottom. 

Chalk trough is to run all around room and to be i>^ inches 
thick, to be hollowed for chalk, to project 2^ inches, and to have 
^ X 5 inch apron. 



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school buildings and grounds in nebraska ^^ 

Picture Moulding. 

Run picture moulding all around school room, level with the 
top of windows. 

Interior Finish. 

All interior finish, with the exception of doors, is to be best 
quality yellow pine, hand smoothed for oil finish. 

Painting. 

Paint all tin immediately after laying and before covering, with 
two coats of approved mineral paint. 

Paint all exterior woodwork with three coats of pure lineed oil, 
pure white lead and best English pigments, and color as selected. 

The first coat of paint is to be ^ French ochre, 3^ white lead 
and oil. After first coat all nail holes and other defects are to be 
puttied. 

Varnish all interior woodwork three coats ; first coat is to be a 
liquid filler, second and third coats a good standard varnish, list 
price not less than $2.50. 

Filler and first coat are to be rubbed down, last coat is to be 
flowed on. 

Blackboards. 

Blackboards will be put on by the Board, and are not to be in- 
cluded in this contract. 

Hardware. 

The Carpenter will furnish complete and will put on all hard- 
ware. Each window is to have a heavy sash lock, and one lUish 
sash lift. Front door is to have 4^/3 x 43/2 inch lock with three steel 
tumblers, two keys, and three 4^ x 4J.2 inch steel hinges. 

Each inside door is to have one tumbler lock and two 4x4 inch 
steel hinges. 

Teacher's closet is to have one tumbler lock to one leaf, the other 
leaf to be hooked to shelf, each door to be hung with two ^1/2 inch x 
33^ inch steel hinges. 

All locks are to have solid knobs, elongated escutcheons. All 
hardware above specified is to be bronzed. 



34 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

Model Plans for Village Schools 

One wlio looks through this book carefully will be surprised at 
the difference in the appearances of the school buildings in the 
villages of the state. It is plain to be seen that many of our school 
buildings a., e creatures of the imagination of architects with no 
knowledge of the actual needs of the schoolroom and with little care 
or forethought for the comforts and conveniences of the school 
children. Many of the buildings, however, that present a very re- 
spectable appearance in perspective possess abominable floor plans. 
Within the rooms, crosslights predominate, the light enters the room 
from the right, or from the right and rear, or from three sides, and 
in no inconsiderable number of schoolrooms in Nebraska the wall 
in front of the children is broken by one or more windows. In 
many cases the front wall is also broken by doors. Such a thing as 
a teacher's closet is unheard of, and the children hang their wet, 
steaming wraps, often with the odors of the kitchen about them, in 
the schoolroom. 

The accompanying plans are designed to show how village school 
buildings containing two and four rooms may be constructed so as 
to avoid these difflculties. 

A MODEL TWO-ROOM FRAME SCHOOL BUILDING 

Here are the plans of a model two-room frame building for a 
small village or a thickly settled rural community. It is a two- 
story building, and may be heated with stoves or furnaces arranged 
according to the specifications for a rural schoolhouse published 
elsewhere in this volume. Read carefully the description of the 
Sutherland schoolhouse illustrated in the frontispiece. At any time 
in the future a third room may be added according to the first floor 
plan, or two rooms may be added according to the first and second 
floor plans. 

A MODEL TWO-ROOM BRICK SCHOOL BUILDING 

These plans vary slightly from those of the frame building just 
described. Two cloak rooms are here provided for each schoolroom, 
one cloak room for each sex. Should future schoolrooms be con- 
structed at any time, each room would be restricted to one cloak 
room. The shading of the walls indicates windows or openings 




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SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 43 

that may be bricked vip with the construction of the original two 
rooms, but which may later be converted into doors or windows. As 
the rear walls of both the frame and brick plans have no openings 
whatever, it would not be a difficult matter to construct the future 
schoolrooms indicated on the plans, and then again double the 
capacity of the building by adding as much more on the rear side, 
remodeling the roof and opening passage ways from the rear of the 
halls. The possibility of thus increasing to eight rooms is reserved 
more particularly for the following plans. In Nebraska villages it is 
always wise to make provision for doubling the capacity of the 
school buildings at any time without necessarily doubling the ex- 
pense of construction. 

A MODEL FOUR-ROOM FRAME SCHOOL BUILDING. 

This is practically the Calhoun school building illustrated herein. 
This building was erected last year at a cost of about $6,000. As 
may be seen by the plan, it contains ventilating flues for all the 
schoolrooms. Each room is similar in its arrangement to the one 
room in the Sutherland schoolhouse, in district No. 20 of the same 
county in which Calhoun is located — Washington. District No. 20, 
Calhoun, and Blair are all in Washington county, and their new 
buildings were all designed by the same architect, Mr. Latenser. 
There is practically no difference in the interior point of view or in 
the arrangement of the Sutherland schoolroom, any schoolroom in 
the Calhoun building, and any schoolroom in the new Blair high 
school building. They are all arranged with the windows at the left 
of the children and an unbroken front wall before them. 

A MODEL FOUR-ROOM BRICK SCHOOL BUILDING. 

These plans differ but little from those for the four-room frame 
building, but the interior walls, like the exterior, are designed to run 
down to the foundation. For explanation of this, sec the description 
of the Blair high school building. The- capacity of this building 
may be doubled by duplicating it on the rear side, remodeling the 
roof, and converting the double window at the rear of the hall into 
a double door or opening it into an archway. 



44 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



School Site 

In selecting a site for a school building the principal items to be 
considered are size, soil, drainage, sightliness and location in the 
district. One acre of ground is little enough, — two or three acres 
would be better, — but the depth of the lot should exceed the widtli 
by about one-third. The front part of the grounds should be sodded 
with blue grass and planted with hardy shade trees, not too close to 
the building. The ground should, if possible, be sloping toward the 
road or street, with no depressions. If the ground is quite level, 
artificial drainage should be resorted to. 




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SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 49 

Seating 

Even when school buildings are properly constructed, and school- 
rooms are lighted as they should be, much of the good that should 
result therefrom is counteracted by an improper arrangement and 
placing of the desks and seats of the children. School desks are 
usually made in six sizes, from No. i, the largest, to No. 6, the 
smallest. Sometimes they are numbered from A, the largest, to F, 
the smallest. No. i is sometimes known as the College or Normal 
School size and may be entirely dispensed with. No. 6 is the proper 
size for kindergarten children of four and five years of age and the 
smallest first primary children of five and six years o^ age. A five 
or six year old child that is above the average size for his age may sit 
with the greatest comfort in a No. 5 desk. The rural school, then, 
should contain a single row of No. 2 desks for the largest boys and 
girls, and a row of No. 6 desks for the smallest ones. If there are 
five rows of desks in the room there may be one row each, from 
front to rear, of Nos. 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6. If there are six rows of 
desks in the room, there may be two rows of No. 4. This selection 
will come nearer than any other in accommodating the ordinary 
country school. In too many cases children have desks too large 
for them. They sit on seats that are so high that they cannot place 
their feet flatly on the floor, with desks so high that they cannot 
write on them without elevating their elbows to the height of their 
shoulders. These conditions are very injurious to health, as well 
as uncomfortable. 

Single, desks should be used. The difference in expense is small, 
while the effect on the order of the school and the independence 
and studiousness of the children is great. 

Only desks of the same size should be placed in the same row. 
The old fashioned school placed the small desks across the front, 
the largest ones across the rear, thinking that it looked better that 
way. Perhaps the desks do, but the children do not. The No. 2 seat 
is adjusted at a height to fit the No. 2 desk. 

If the main light comes in, as it should, from one side of 
the schoolroom, the seats should be so placed that it will enter 
at the left of the children. It is usually better to place the row of 
No. 6 desks on the left side of the room and the row of No. 2 on the 



50 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



right side. From a position in front of the No. 6 row of desks the 
teacher can look over the heads of the smaller children on the left 
of the room (her right) to the larger ones at the right of the room. 
It may be preferable, however, to place the rows of No. 5 and No. 
6 desks in the center, No. 2 and No. 3 to the outside. The accom- 
panying diagrams illustrate these two plans. 



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A village employing three or more teachers may seat three-fourths 
of the pupils in each room with only two sizes of desks. One-eighth 
of the desks might be the next size larger and one-eighth the next 
size smaller than the other two sizes used. The intermediate room 

might be seated according to the 
accompanying diagram: 

We place the smaller desks and 
smaller children next the windows, 
as they form less obstruction to 
the light in its passage to the right 
of the room. 

Desks Nos. 5 and 6 should be so 
placed that the edge of the desk 
next to and in front of the child 
shall be about nine inches from the 
back of the seat in which he is sit- 
ting; for desk No. 4 this distance 
should be about ten inches; No. 



5 4 4 4 3 3 

5 4 4 4 3 3 

5 4 4 4 3 3 

5 4 4 4 3 3 

5 4 4 4 3 3 

5 4 4 4 3 3 

5 4 4 4 3 3 

5 4 4 4 3 3 




FROINI Till' \VI';ST VIRGINIA vSCIIOOI, JOTRXAI, 
Charleston, November, lilOl 




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A TWO-ROOM BUILDING 
(From the American School Board Journal, Chicago, June, 1901) 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 53 

3 eleven or twelve inches; and No. 2 twehe O' thirteen inches. In a 
majority of the schoolrooms of Nebraska the desks are so far apart that 
children are forced to lean forward in unnatural positions to make use 
of them in writing and drawing. 

The aisles at the sides and rear of the room should be about three 
feet wide and the others should be about twenty inches wide. 



54 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

Outhouses 

Section 6a, subdivision V. of the Scliool Laws of Nebraska for 
1 901 is as follows: 

It shall be the duty of school district boards to provide on every 
schoolhouse site, and keep in good repair and in clean and healthful 
condition, at least two separate water closets or privies, located on 
those portions of the site the farthest from the main entrance to 
the schoolhouse, and as far from each other as the surrounding 
condition will permit ; Provided, That where adequate and separate 
interior closets are provided and maintained in good repair and 
healthful condition, the foregoing condition of this act shall not 
apply. 

In too many districts in the state this law is not enforced ; in a 
few districts there is but one outhouse ; in a larger number there 
are two outhouses, but both are under one roof ; in a still larger 
number of districts the outhouses are, next to the schoolhouse itself, 
the most conspicuous objects within forty rods, and children are 
taught by their position and arrangement, by suggestion, by school- 
room habit and inclination, even by their teacher's rules sometimes, 
that tlie chief object of school attendance is to frequent the 
outhouses. 

The outhouses at railroad depots, hotels, and school buildings 
often contain upon their v/alls the most obscene, foul and vulgar 
language and figures that may be conceived, written or drawn. 
This is not always the work of school children, even in the out- 
houses on school grounds, but often of the vagrant and the loafer. 
Every school outhouse should be provided with a stout door and 
lock, and it should be locked at all times when school is not in 
session. That will insure its daily inspection, and with brush and 
paint or whitewash all marks should be covered up the day they are 
made. Discourage such crimes. 

The two outhouses should be placed in the two rear comers of 
the school grounds and should be concealed by trees or shrubbery. 
A high, tight-board fence or a hedge should separate the rear quar- 
ters of the school grounds, and on the front half only should the two 
sexes be allowed a common play ground. 

There are children who have attended the public schools for 




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NORTH SCHOOL, SUPERIOR 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA $7 

several years who have seldom, if ever, asked to be excused from 
the schoolroom. There are others who leave the room each and 
every half day. Differently constituted, you say? Yes, undoubtedly, 
but not by nature. The difference is, in a measure at least, in habit, 
in training. We know of parents who require their children to at- 
tend to their physical necessities before they start to school, in the 
morning and at noon. Such parents realize that the ordinary school 
outhouse will, unavoidably, disease the body and corrupt the mind 
of the child. They realize that the gathering of large numbers of 
children in such places does not improve their morals or their man- 
ners. They realize, also, what is of minor importance, that a child 
who leaves the schoolroom each half day not only interrupts the 
work, attracts the attention of the teacher, and distracts the atten- 
tion of the pupils, both in his exit and his entrance, but also, if he 
loses ten minutes from his studies each time, loses sixty whole hours, 
or more than ten days in the course of nine months. A teacher 
should permit pupils to leave the schoolroom when necessary, and 
she should be cautioned not to constitute herself the judge of the 
child's physical necessities, but she should use all reasonable means 
to reduce the number to a minimum. One teacher has adopted the 
plan of excusing during the first five minutes after nine o'clock, while 
settling down and hanging wraps, pupils who think they may need 
to pass out before recess, and strange as it may seem, this almost 
entirely cures the evil of a string of pupils constantly going and 
coming. Pupils will not neglect play to attend to their physical 
necessities before school time, even with the tap of the bell five 
minutes before the hour to remind them. And in this connection, is 
it too much to ask of parents that they instruct their children in 
habits of cleanliness : the fathers their boys, and the mothers their 
girls ? 



58 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

School Architecture 

The advantages derived from schoolhouses, whose exterior pre- 
sents a beautiful design, is becoming recognized more and more 
every year. 

When the beautiful was taught unto mankind, says an exchange, 
the district schoolhouse was evidently left out of the list of things 
that might be called decorative. Square, grim, uninviting and un- 
compromisingly ugly, it stands at the most convenient cross roads 
or on some beautiful wooded slope, a menace to ethics of architec- 
tural beauty and a most helpful argument in childish minds against 
the attractiveness of education. There is little that could appeal to 
the esthetic side of human nature in a building of this kind. 

The log buildings of pioneer days set the rectangular fashion of 
architecture through necessity, the materials used and the crude 
labor employed requiring this. Times and conditions have changed 
so radically since then, the materials and the workmen are so much 
more easily secured and better suited to the work, that much is now 
possible in the way of varying the old style. Especially where it is 
a two- or three-room building are there possibilities of architectural 
beauty. Straight, apparently endless roof lines can be broken with 
windows, and sharp angles softened in outline, with a small portico 
here and there to relieve the severity of the whole. The same amount 
of money carefully spent could secure so much better results that 
school commissioners ought to feel inspired to try it sometimes and 
see for themselves. 

From the district school may come the nation's leaders, rulers, 
writers, thinkers of the future, and the more they are given of the 
artistic and symmetrical things in childhood the better will they 
stand in later years for the elevating and refining things of life. 

Interiors where bare walls, straight wooden seats and a painful 
lack of adornment are the daily environment of the country student, 
offer nothing conducive to the esthetic development, and another 
helpful opportunity is lost. 

— The American School Board Journal, October, ipoi. 




ARLINGTON HIGH SCHOOL' ROOM 




KECKLKY vSCIHJOL, I)JSTRICT No. (1:5, YORK COUNTY 




TLEASANT PRAIRIE SCHOOL, PAWNEE COUNTY 




PLEASANT PRAIRIE SCHOOL, DISTRICT No 14, PAWNEE COUNTY 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 6l 

Value of School Architecture 

Economy is well, says a Southern school board member, but 
sometimes it is carried too far, and sometimes practiced in wrong 
directions. To the stranger the outward appearance of the school 
buildings of a city is taken as the indication of its educational stand- 
ing. Of course the best teachers may teach in the shabbiest build- 
ings, or the poorest in the finest buildings, but as a rule interest in 
education is indicated by outward appearances. A community that 
takes great interest in education, that demands up-to-date methods 
in the schoolroom, will demand up-to-date school buildings, and the 
absence of such buildings is taken as an indication of lack of prog- 
ress in education. 

Nothing helps a town more than good educational facilities, or 
hurts it more than a lack of them, and as these facilities are judged 
by strangers to a great extent by the appearance of school buildings, 
it follows that nothing helps a town more than good school build- 
ings, or hurts it more than a lack of them. 

But it is not for the effect on strangers alone that we need good 
school buildings. We need them for our children, for their health, 
for their comfort, for their education. The need of such buildings 
for the comfort and the health of the children will be conceded with- 
out a thought. A moment's reflection will convince any reasonable 
man that attractive and well arranged school buildings have an edu- 
cational value. 

For men and women arc largely made by their surroundings. 
Beauty is not without its utility. It has a great influence on the 
young. Children who are in their school lives to have attractive 
surroundings, other things being equal, will develop into men and 
women of better taste than those who have not. Life is not all 
utility, but even in a utilitarian sense taste is valuable. It culti- 
vates a love for order, a fondness for system that has much io do 
with success. 

— American School Board Journal, 



62 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

Rural Schoolhouse Heating and Ventilation 

BY S. J. RACE, REDWOOD FALLS, MINN. 

The problem of warming and ventilating small schoolhouses in 
rural districts where a common stove must furnish all the heat that 
is used is one of no small importance. Common sense here as else- 
where will achieve the highest results. 

As a rule the teacher must take care of the fires. He arrives at 
eight o'clock and finds the fire burning low, or else has gone out, 
with an average temperature of 45 degrees. By nine o'clock he has 
managed to raise the temperature to 70 degrees. 

It is a barbarous task that some school trustees set forth for 
female teachers, who are expected to wade through the snow, some- 
times a mile, and then go into an icy cold room and there build a 
fire and await the warming of the room. Many trustees have fires 
built in mid-winter. It is economy to do so. No teacher is fitted to 
begin the day's work, if already her strength has been overtaxed by 
exposure in cold schoolrooms. 

There is one thing sure, the doors and windows must fit snug and 
tight. All exposed windows must be provided with storm sash. The 
stove must be large enough to do the work easily without crowding. 
Fully one-half the stoves in use are too small. The fire pot should 
be at least sixteen inches in diameter and fully twenty inches deep. 
Nearly all modern stoves are fitted with sufficient check drafts so 
that a fire is at all times under perfect control. No matter how large 
the fire pot is, if the heat is not wanted, extra fuel is not consumed. 

Hard coal as fuel for schoolrooms is without doubt the best, the 
most satisfactory, and the cleanest fuel. With it, fire in a good 
stove can be retained all night, thus giving a warm room in the 
morning. 

There is no reason why the small rural school cannot be provided 
with an adequate system of warming and ventilation. The physical 
welfare of pupil and teacher demands it. Health is wealth. The 
cost should not exceed fifty dollars. This allows for rebuilding the 
chimney from the foundation. I would recommend a single flue 
12 X 16 inches. This will give a chimney with an outside measure- 
ment of 16 X 24 inches. We have tried double flue chimneys, with 
two flues, each 8x 12 and 12 x 12 inches, respectively. They work 




INTERMEDIATE DEPARTMENT, EUSTIS 



i 




INTERMEDIATE DEPARTMENT, EUSTIS 




PLYMOUTH PUBLIC SCHOOL 




GRAMMAR DEPARTMENT, PLYMOUTH 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 65 

well. But a single flue works somewhat better. The flue is warmer, 
and hence the outward and upward movement of the foul air is 
better. 

The iron register 12 x 16 inches for opening measurement should 
go into the chimney within four inches from the floor (don't put 
any in the chimney near the ceiling). Place the stove in a corner, 
the one most out of the way. Don't put it in the center of the room. 
It is in the way then. 

Cut a hole in the floor 10 x 14 inches, over which place an iron 
register. Connect this opening with a box 10x10 inches wide and 
long enough to reach from the register in the floor to the outside of 
the foundation. Cover the end of the box with a coarse wire screen 
to keep out any animals. The box may be of wood or galvanized 
iron. Wood I believe is preferable. Surround the stove with a cir- 
cular galvanized iron jacket 6 feet high and from 36 to 40 inches in 
diameter. The stove will determine the diameter of the jacket. 
Measure the diagonal base of the stove to determine the diameter of 
the jacket. Have a door 23^ feet by 4 feet cut in the jacket for re- 
moving the ashes and feeding the fire. Have the jacket strongly 
made. See to it that the door in the jacket is properly arranged so 
that ashes may easily be removed. 

I am often asked by school trustees, if the stove were placed in 
the center of the room, will not the heat be more uniformly dis- 
tributed ? I do not see how it can be. By this plan all the heat in 
the stove is forced by the flow of pure air from the outside through 
the fresh air box, directly to within a few feet from the ceiling. The 
only escape for it is through the foul air register in the chimney near 
the floor. The escape is by pressure. In a recent test of six school- 
houses the greatest variation found was three degrees, when meas- 
ured the same distance from the floor. The thermometer should 
hang not to exceed forty inches from the floor. 

— The American School Board Journal, Chicago, July, ipoi. 



66 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

Principles of Ventilating and Heating 

(From School Sanitation and Decoration, with permission of the 
pubHshers, D. C. Heath & Co., Boston. Extracts from Chapter III.) 

Sir Edwin Chadwick did not exaggerate when he said that good 
ventilation, heating and lighting of a schoolroom will augment the 
capacity of attention of the pupils by at least one-fifth as compared 
with that of the children taught in schoolrooms of common construc- 
tion. In order to ventilate a schoolroom properly, it is necessary 
to remove quickly the air vitiated by respiration, and to replace it 
with fresh air. This must be done without producing perceptible 
draughts. The oxygen obtained from the air is absolutely essential 
for the continuance of all forms of animal life, school children not 
excepted. 

Expired air contains about four per cent of carbonic acid gas, be- 
sides having its volume of oxygen diminished by about the same 
amount. Furthermore, this expired air .has become considerably 
warmer, and has acquired a large quantity of water vapor from the 
lungs and air passages. Carbonic acid gas is unsuitable for the 
support of healthy respiration. It will not support combustion, as 
is shown by plunging a lighted taper into it. Animal life is almost 
as suddenly extinguished when placed in an atmosphere of it. Mix- 
tures of this gas, with the common air in different proportions, give 
rise to various symptoms that indicate incomplete oxidation of the 
blood, and in some cases cause slow death. However, the carbonic 
acid gas that occurs in the expired air from man or animals seems 
to be far different in its effects from the carbonic acid gas derived 
from purely chemical sources. Carbonic acid gas is in itself odor- 
less, and yet when we enter a crowded and poorly ventilated school- 
room we can always detect a very disagreeable odor. This is caused 
by volatile, organic matter, which comes off from the body in the 
process of respiration, and which is the most vicious constituent of 
expired air. It is invisible and is very difficult to measure or an- 
alyze even by the most delicate chemical methods. It is this which 
we notice when we enter a close room, and, being organic matter, it 
is subject to putrefaction. While it takes a large quantity of car- 
bonic acid gas to become injurious, a very small quantity of this 
organic poison may do much harm. It is possible, however, to meas- 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 69 

ure the carbonic acid gas quite accurately. And as the organic mat- 
ter increases in direct proportion with the carbonic acid, we can use 
the measure of the carbonic acid as the indicator of the amount of 
poisonous material. In other words, we make our tests for this or- 
ganic matter by measuring accurately the percentage of carbonic 
acid. It is an important fact for us to bear in mind that carbonic 
acid gas, as it comes from combustion or respiration, always appears 
in bad company. If, for example, it is the result of combustion of 
coal, it is usually accompanied by sulphurous acid, a poisonous gas ; 
and if it is the result of respiration, it is always accompanied by these 
minute quantities of volatile, organic poisons. 

EFFECTS OF BAD AIR 

There are several things about expired air that directly affect the 
human organism. Expired air has less oxygen, contains consider- 
able carbonic acid gas, together with minute quantities of poisonous 
organic matter ; it has a large amount of watery vapor and is 
warmer. That these factors have evil effects, especially when they 
are in a concentrated condition, has been unhappily proved in cer- 
tain well-known instances. In the Black Hole at Calcutta, 146 per- 
sons were confined in a space 18 feet each way, with two small win- 
dows on one side. On the next morning 123 were found dead, and 
the remaining 23 were very ill. 

It must not be supposed, however, that no ill results follow a com- 
paratively small degree of pollution, because these results are not 
immediately apparent. A general lowering of strength and vigor is 
produced, and a greater proneness to fall victim to respiratory and 
other diseases. The drowsiness and languor so frequently noticed 
in school children arc, to the intelligent teacher, not an indication 
of wilful inattention, but of the need of purer air. Yawning, again, 
is a cry of the nervous system for purer blood, i. c, for blood con- 
taining more oxygen and less effete matter. 

It is in the highest degree unfair to expect the brains of children 
to be active in the exercise of their functions while they are provided 
with blood that is vitiated by respiratory impurities, and are thus 
kept in a species of mental fog. 



70 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

TESTS FOR BAD AIR 

It is not necessary to go through a careful chemical analysis to 
ascertain the amount of impurities in schoolroom air. It is accepted 
among sanitarians that the maximum amount of carbonic acid gas 
permissible is .07 per cent. This does not mean that the carbonic 
acid gas is the dangerous thing, but that amount of carbonic acid 
gas indicates the greatest amount of organic impurity consistent 
with the preservation of health. There is no simple test for the or- 
ganic impurities in the air, which are really more important, because 
more pernicious, than the carbonic acid ; but inasmuch as the car- 
bonic acid is nearly always in exact proportion to the organic matter, 
the test for the former answers equally well for the latter. 

This test, combined with the sense of smell on coming directly 
from the external air, gives most reliable indications, which should 
never be neglected. 

A simple and rapid method for estimating the amount of carbonic 
acid in the air is described as follows by Dr. J. B. Cohen : 

( 1 ) A standard solution of limewater. Pure water is left in con- 
tact with slacked lime until saturated. The clear decanted liquid is 
diluted with 99 times its own volume of distilled water. Make one 
quart or one liter. 

(2) Phenolphthalein solution is made by dissolving one part of 
phenolphthalein in 500 times its weight of diluted alcohol (equal 
parts of pure alcohol and water). Make three ounces or 100 cubic 
centimeters. 

(3) A twenty-ounce stoppered bottle with (preferably) a hollow 
stopper marked to hold three drams or ten cubic centimeters. 

A sample of air is taken by blowing air into the clean stoppered 
bottle with bellows. Six minims or one-third of a cubic centimeter 
of the phenolphthalein solution is then added, and the measured 
volume of lime water is run into the hollow stopper. The lime- 
water is poured into the bottle, the stopper inserted, the time noted, 
and the contents vigorously shaken. If the red color of the liquid 
disappears in three minutes or less, the atmosphere is unfit for 
respiration. 

The stock of limewater should be kept in a bottle furnished with 
a top and coated within with a film of parafifin, and in the neck an 
open tube should be inserted containing pieces of caustic soda or 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 73 

quicklime. The phenolphthalein solution is best measured by means 
of a narrow glass tube passing through the cork of the bottle upon 
which the measured volume is marked. If the cork fits easily, the 
liquid may be forced up exactly to the mark by pushing on the 
cork. 

The following are estimates made in this manner compared with 
the results obtained by Pettenkofer's method : 

Time Per cent volume of 

Minutes Carbonic Acid 

I'A 0.1618 

^H 0-1379 

iK 0.1279 

3/4 0.07716 

4/4 0.05142 

5 0.0464 

7/2 0.0351 

This method may be used in the classroom at any time, but care 
should be taken to insure the cleanliness of the bottles and the 
purity of the standard solution. No bottles that have contained any 
acid or alkali should ever be used, unless the bottles have been 
thoroughly cleansed and rinsed. 

In taking the sample of air with the bellows, it is well to have a 
rubber tube five or six feet long attached to the inlet opening on the 
bellows, thus guarding against vitiation of the air by the experi- 
menter. The school children should not gather about the appa- 
ratus, as they might by their breathing interfere with the results. 
On the other hand, it is well to have them interested in the air tests 
and as far as possible know what is being done ; they should also be 
told the results. 

VENTILATION REQUIREMENTS 

It has been seen that for healthy respiration air siunild never 
contain more than .07 per cent carbonic acid. Some authorilics, 
however, place this figure at .06 per cent. We will place our stand- 
ard at the former figure. Ventilation, then, should have for its 
object the keeping of the amount of carbonic acid gas within this 
linut. 

Each individual gives off in the process of respiration 316 cubic 
centimeters of carbonic acid gas per minute, so that it requires not 
less than 590 cubic meters of fresh air per hour to keep each indi- 



74 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

vidual supplied with air containing less than .07 per cent of carbonic 
acid gas. Parkes, an authority on hygiene, gives the following 
figures for the amount of fresh air that should be supplied to per- 
sons in health and repose: 

For adult males 3»500 cu. ft. per head per hour. 

For adult females 3,000 cu. ft. per head per hour. 

For children 2,000 cu. ft. per head per hour. 

For mixed community 3,000 cu. ft. per head per hour. 

In actual practice, in the ventilation of schools, 2,000 cubic feet 
per hour is usually taken as the quantity of air that is practicable to 
furnish to pupils, and no plan or system of ventilation should aim 
at giving a smaller supply. No air should be considered too pure for 
school children. Each pupil should be provided with from 25 to 30 
cubic feet of fresh air per minute, and this should be distributed 
without producing draughts, and have a temperature of not less than 
60° nor more than 68° Fahr. 

The following rules respecting ventilation are of importance : 
(i) The air should be drawn from a pure source. 

(2) No draught or current should be perceptible. Often the 
remedy for a draught is not to close the opening, but to make others 
in order to increase the area through which the air enters. 

(3) The entry of air should be constant, not at intervals. 

(4) An abundant exit for impure air should be provided sep- 
arate from the points of entrance of fresh air. In order to maintain 
a given standard of purity, it is necessary to provide for the re- 
moval of a volume of impure air equal to that of the pure air which 
is supplied. In order to satisfactorily fulfil all these requirements, 
it is necessary to iinderstand fully the several systems of ventilation. 

NATURAL VENTILATION 

There are two natural agencies that are constantly assisting to 
bring about ventilation : the diffusion of gases, and the air currents 
formed by differences in temperature. 

Diffusion, by which the purer outside gases tend to mix with 
the impure internal air, is constantly going on, though under or- 
dinary circumstances the rate of diffusion is slow, and the amount 
of interchange thus effected is but small. 

Differences in temperature cause much more active movements 
of air, warm air floating to the top of cold air, as oil floats to the 
top of water. The air in a room is warmed by the inmates and by 




AN INTERIOR VIEW 




A I'l^RSPIvCTIVI' VII'AV 

New Steele School, Colorado S])riiigs, Colorado — From American School Hoard 

Journal, Chicago, April, 1901. (See also plans.) 




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SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA ')'] 

the stove, gas or other source of artificial heat. Cold air tends to 
rush in from every opening, and, being heavier than warm air, 
falls toward the floor, producing a draught. The great problem of 
ventilation is to secure a sufficient interchange of air without causing 
draughts. The entrance of air at any temperature below 50° into a 
room whose temperature is 65° or even 70° is almost certain to be 
accompanied by a draught ; hence it is necessary to warm the enter- 
ing air during the winter months. 

If a free entrance for pure air is not provided, the influence of 
the higher temperature in the schoolroom may produce an aspiration 
of air from undesirable places. Thus it not uncommonly happens 
that air is drawn directly from underground cellars, defective 
drains, water-closet rooms, and so on. 

For practical purposes there are two kinds of ventilation, natural 
and artificial. The former is produced by the ordinary interchange 
of air when doors and windows are allowed to remain open. The 
latter depends upon the assistance of the heating apparatus, or of 
some mechanical appliance for forcing the air into the rooms or 
sucking it out from them. Natural ventilation is possible only dur- 
ing the warmer months. The colder the outside air, the more vio- 
lent the draughts when it is admitted to the warm room. It is un- 
safe to rely upon it for a supply of pure air when all doors, windows 
and ventilators are closed. The diffusion of the outside air through 
the walls, cracks around doors and windows, etc., is not sufficient 
to purify the air, and, if depended upon, will result in the foul at- 
mosphere only too common in schoolrooms. 

In order that natural ventilation may be more effectual, all cor- 
ridors should be large and airy, and have windows opening direct to 
the outer air. No schoolroom plan which does not fulfil these con- 
ditions can be regarded as satisfactory. 

In the methods of ventilation heretofore described, the air is ad- 
mitted at the same temperature as the external air. Such methods 
have, however, but a limited application in the northern United 
States. During a large portion of the year, in order to prevent 
dangerous draughts, the incoming air requires warming. 

When the external air reaches 60°, or better still 65°, the air 
may be freely admitted. Open windows are by far the best means of 
ventilation, and during the school recess all the windows should be 
thrown open, opposite windows if possible, or doors and windows, 
in order that the rooms may be thoroughly flushed with air. Ordi- 



78 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROU^IDS IN NEBKASKA 



nar\- ventilation commonly leaves a considerable proportion of 
organic volatile matter from respiration hanging about the room, 
while the rapid currents of air during the flushing of a room carry 
this away. 

Natural ventilation, as a method of purifying schoolroom air, 
must be discarded entirely during the winter months. 

ARTIFICIAL VENTILATION 

Artificial or forced ventilation refers to those methods which em- 
ploy some artificial means for moving air. Nearly all of such sys- 
tems depend upon one of two things : ( i ) the rarifying power of 
heat applied to air in flues, — the so-called gravity system, — and (2) 
the mechanical power applied through the medium of fans. In the 
first method, the gravity system, the problem is to draw tlie cold 
bad air out of the rooms, and at the same time draw warm fresh air 
in. Warm air is lighter than cold and will always rise. Carbonic 
acid, at the temperature at which it is generated in the lungs, is 
considerably lighter than air, but as soon as it cools to the ordinary 
temperature it becomes heavier and of course falls. 

1^^^ The object of 

^^■__ _ this gravity sys- 

tem is to remove 
the cold bad air 
from the bottom 
of the room, leav- 
ing that which is 
fresh and warm. 
It is not a very 
diiificult matter to 
create a strong 
current by heat- 
ing air and allow- 
ing this heated 
air to pass up 
through a shaft 

or stack. If this stack is connected with the outlets lor the bad air, the 
foul air will be withdrawn from the rooms by the force of the currenr, 
which tends to create a vacuum. The larger the number of outlets 
through which the air is being drawn out, the less chance there is 







Fig. 3 — Gravity system, with in'et and outlet on the 
same side of the room 



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STERLING PUBLIC SCHOOL 




COLERIDGE PUBLIC SCHOOL 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



8l 



for the creation of draughts along the floor of the room. Inlets for 
fresh air must be provided, and proper arrangements made for 
heating it, so that it will be circulated through all parts of the room 
at the proper temperature. It is readily seen that this fresh air 
does not have to be forced into the room through the inlets because 
the ventilating shaft tends to produce a vacuum in the room, and 
the fresh warm air will be sucked in to fill the vacuum. The action 
of the air currents in such a system is well shown in Fig. 3. 

The warm air, 
if al'owed to en- 
ter high in the 
wall of the room, 
makes a complete 
circuit of the 
room without 
creating much 
draught, and is 
sucked out 
through the out- 
let by means of 
the sucking ac- 
tion caused by 
the current of air 
in the ventilating 
shaft. While 
these currents 
may be slightly 
alTected by nat- 
ural ventilation 
through doors 
and uiiidows, the 
variation will not 
interfere mate- 
rial'y with the 
proper results 
being attained. 
The d i a g r a m 
provides, as can 

Fio. 5. — Gravity system, with inlet near the floor and i-t i 

outlet near the ceilinfc on the opposite side rcaCUly DC SCCn, 

for both inlet and outlet on the same side of the room. Other 




FiQ. 4. — Gravity system, with inlet and outlet on oppo- 
site sides and near the floor 




82 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



locations for these openings have been advocated; for instance 
the warm air inlet may be in the floor, and the vent on the 
opposite side of the room and near the floor. The result of such 
an arrangement is shown in Fig. 4. In this case the distril;ution of 
the warm air is not complete. 

Still another arrangement is to have the warm air inlet on the floor 

at one side of the 
room, and the 
outlet high up on 
the other side. 
This gives still 
less distribution 
of the warm fresh 
air throughout 
the room, as is 
shown in Fig. 5. 
Methods have 
been tried intro- 
ducing the warm 
air rather high up 
in the room, and 
withdrawing it 
from the oppo- 
site side near the 
floor. Figure 6 
shows that the 
results are simi- 
lar to the last ar- 
rangement. 
These last cases 
are bad enough, 
but there are 
others even 
worse. 

Figure 7 shows 
the inlet high and 

the outlet nearly opposite. Where this plan is adopted, any escape of the 
vitiated cool air must be brought about through the natural ventilation of 
doors and windows, or by disturbance of the lower atmospheric stratum 




FiG. 6.— Gravity system, with inlet high and outlet near 
the floor on the opposite side 




Fig. 7. — Gravity system, with inlet high and outlet high 
and opposite 




CKDAR BI^UFFS PUBLIC .SCHOOL 




JANSEN I'UBLIC SCHOOL 




MERNA PUBLIC SCHOOL 





J If " :•" 




[i: 




ANSELMO PUBLIC SCHOOL 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 85 

by the occupants of the room. Careful experiments have been tried in 
glass rooms by ventilation experts, who have watched the course taken 
by the air currents under these different conditions, the currents be- 
ing marked by smoke and thus easily studied. 

In practice, it is found advisable to have several outlets for the 
air rather than one, as indicated in the diagrams. Thus there is 
less chance for the production of draughts, and a better circulation 
is afforded. These gravity systems usually arrange for a mixing 
valve, by means of which the temperature of the fresh air is regu- 
lated, it being possible by opening or closing the valve to introduce 
more or less cold air directly from the outside as occasion demands. 
Automatic regulators (thermostats) have been devised and in- 
stalled to open and close these valves, without requiring the at- 
tention of the teacher. In many instances these work admirably, 
but often get out of adjustment, in which case there is no ventila- 
tion, and either too little or too much heat. 

It is of the greatest importance in the introduction of this or any 
other recognized system of heating and ventilating that an expert 
engineer of wide experience should make the plans and complete 
the arrangements. Each school building requires a special study 
by itself. Two buildings constructed on exactly the same architec- 
tural plans might require entirely different heating and ventilating 
systems, because of slightly different orientation or exposure. It 
has been the tendency in the past to economize on systems of venti- 
lation; but when the necessary expensiveness of good ventilation 
is fairly grasped by school managers, there will be an end of this 
attempt to save money, which is now so general. Such economiz- 
ing is at the expense of the children's health and greatly tends to 
increase our mortality. 

The other method of artificial ventilation, that requiring mechan- 
ical means to force fresh air into the rooms, operates in exactly the 
opposite way from the gravity system. That is, the fresh air is 
forced into the schoolroom by means of a fan, and the foul air is 
pushed out through any openings in the rooms and passes away 
through a stack. The air in the rooms in such a system as this is 
under constant pressure. All spaces are filled with air, and all leak- 
age is toward the outside. Thus the entrance of contaminated air 
from any outside source is absolutely prevented. Such a system as 
this, in distinction from the vacuum system, is called the plenum. 



86 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

The diagrams shown in the discussion of the gravity system will 
answer as well for the fan system, if we imagine the warm air to be 
forced into the room, and the vitiated air to be pushed out through 
the vents. 

The plenum has one great advantage over the vacuum system, in 
that the air in the rooms is under pressure, and there is no oppor- 
tunity for bad air to leak into the rooms through floors or walls. Of 
course the air that is warmed and distributed must be taken from a 
pure source, and this leads to the discussion of an important point. 
This is the air supply. 

The air must never be taken from the basement. It must be taken 
in from the outside ; and the condition of the ground over which it 
is drawn is of great importance. The best conditions are afforded 
by a grass plot that can always be kept mown and clean. If neces- 
sary, it should be fenced off, and all scraps from lunches, loose 
papers, apple cores, banana skins, etc., must be kept from it. It 
should be the cleanest and most beautiful spot about the school, and 
should be as far as possible from the part of the bxiilding in which 
the sanitaries are located. In this way, a pure, fresh supply is as- 
sured, and one that is comparatively free from dust. In warming 
the air, it is often advisable to furnish it with some moisture. This 
should all be arranged in connection with the heater. A room that is 
overheated with dry air is very oppressive. 

These systems, such as the gravity and the mechanical systems, 
require the expenditure of considerable coal or gas in order to heat 
the air and to run the necessary machinery. No system of warm- 
ing and ventilating has as yet been devised which will work auto- 
matically. Any system, if it is good for anything, must be super- 
vised by a competent man. Brains are required as well as coal for 
an apparatus designed for this great purpose. The man who is 
responsible for the running of the heating and ventilating appa- 
ratus not uncommonly regards good ventilation as inimical to his 
interests, and in case the heat is lowered, will sometimes stop the 
valve leading to the exit flues, thus penning up the hot impure air, 
rather than supply the extra fuel required. Of course it is for nis 
interest to appear economical of coal. He is, therefore, under con- 
stant temptation to check the outflow of warm air from the rooms 
and to minimize the period of flushing them with the external air 
after school hours. 




*msu 




WEST UNION, CUSTER COUNTY, PUBLIC SCHOOL 




DISTRICT SCIIOOI, N... I,, 1 lA.M I I.T* )\ CniNTV 




DISTRICT SCHOOL Xo. 13, HALL COUNTY 




DISTRICT SCHOOL No. li, HALL COUNTY 



I 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



89 



Various other methods of heating schoolrooms are in common 
use. One that deserves some attention is that which utiUzes steam 
for heating, the radiators being placed in schoolrooms next to the 
outside walls. Openings are cut through the walls at the base of 
these radiators, permitting the outside air to enter the room and 
become heated by passing between and around the various pipes of 
the radiator. The outlets for bad air are usually placed on the 
other side of the room from the radiators, thus securing a fairly 
good circulation of the air throughout the room. 

The action of 
such a system on 
the air currents 
in the roo.n may 
be seen in Fig. 8. 
Steam-heating, 
if the radiators 
are in the school- 
rooms, is not ad- 
visable unless 
there are open- 
ings provided for 
admitting fresh 

air. The temperature is regulated with great difificulty, even if the 
valves are in good condition. The average steam -heated schoolroom is 
overheated. 

In smaller schools it has not been customary to introduce any of 
these more or less complicated systems because of the expense, and 
yet none of the other methods that have been devised for them are 
perfectly satisfactory. The unjacketed stove, when placed in the 
schoolroom itself, cannot be considered with favor. It is true that 
several forms of stove have been arranged with jackets, double 
floors, ventilating shafts, etc., but even then, unless conditions are 
remarkably in their favor, such heating and ventilating apparatus 
will not work with satisfaction. In cold weather, in particular, such 
stoves will not heat the room equally. Some children will be warm 
and some cold. Stoves without any system of jacketing should 
never be used. They make the air very dry, produce a close smell, 
and heat the room only on the side where the stove happens to be. 
The distribution of the warm air in this case may be seen in Fig. 




Fig. S. — Steam with direct radiation 



90 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



9. If this Stove is jacketed, and proper means taken to heat and dis- 
tribute outside air and to remove bad air, much objection is re- 
moved. It will be found, however, upon taking into account the 
expense of jacketing the stove, providing the necessary ventilation 
flues, etc., required to make it work satisfactorily, that the expendi- 
ture incurred will not be very far from that required for the con- 
struction of a cel- 
lar and furnace, 
and the latter 
system would 
give far greater 
satisfaction. One 
serious objection 
to having the 
heating appa- 
ratus in the 
schoolroom i s 
that any atten- 
tion which it may 
require during 
school hours is a 

Fig 9.-Theunjacketedstovc ^^^^^ of distrac- 

tion to the children. 

Fireplaces are considered very good things to have in school- 
rooms, but they must not be depended upon as the only means of 
heating and ventilating. A fireplace furnishes a cheerful warmth 
and is a great purifier of the air, but its heat is too unequally dis- 
tributed. Even in smaller rooms it produces cold currents of air 
along the floor. Attempts have been made to utilize the heat usually 
passing up the chimney and wasted by the fireplace, by means of 
chambers behind the fireplace. In this way external air is warmed 
as it enters the room. A heater constructed on this plan is shown 
in Fig. 10. At the back of the heater is an air chamber communi- 
cating with the external air. 

Air admitted through the opening (a, Fig. 10) is warmed by com- 
ing in contact with the fire-clay {d), which separates the air channel 
from the smoke flue (c). The warmed air leaves the air channel by 
the grating {b) over the fireplace, and then travels along "the upper 





GlvM'^VA WARD SCHouI. 




GENEVA PRIMARY ROOM 




DISTRICT SCHOOL Xo. 7, PERKINS COUNTY 




DISTRICT SCHOOL No. 01, RED WILLOW COUNTY 



School buildings and grounds in Nebraska 



93 



part of the room, falling to the floor as it cools, and finally escap- 
ing up the chimney. 





Fig. 10.— Slow-combustion venti'ating stove 

1. Section of stove showing — a. entrance of cold air; b, entrance of 

warmed air into room; c, smoke flue; d, fire-clay back of stove. 

2. Front elevation of same stove. 

The distribution of air currents in a room with this arrangement 
would be similar to that shown in Fig. 3. A specially arranged 
fireplace of the kind just described might be found very useful in a 
very small room, but in the larger rooms it could hardly be satis- 
factory by itself. 



94 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



The Model Schoolhouse and Grounds 

Before entering upon our work, let us take a look at the school- 
house. Every country school should have at least four acres sur- 
rounding the building. The same amount of space would be a great 
advantage in the city, but is hardly practicable yet. There are, how- 
ever, a great many improvements that might be introduced into the 
city schools without entailing any great additional expense. For 
instance, the school buildings might be smaller and more numerous. 
No schoolhouse should be more than two stories high. It is a poor 
plan to build one large school of five or six stories where two build- 
ings of half the size would answer the purpose better. It is cruelty 
to the children to have them file in line up three or four flights of 
stairs four times a day, and at recess be so crowded together in the 
playground that exercise and play of an exhilarating nature are out 
of the question. 

The roughness and rudeness that prevail upon the playgrounds of 
many large public schools is almost entirely due to the poor accom- 
modations for the number of pupils enrolled. It would be far wiser 
and the' results would be more satisfactory if each school building 
were limited to three hundred pupils. This would allow for a build- 
ing of ten rooms, five rooms on a floor. The grounds surrounding 
the building should be spacious. This matter should be brought 
properly and persistently before the Board of Finance of every 
city. 

In most of the public school buildings of the cities there is a large 
basement built for the accommodation of the students in wet 
weather. The buildings range in height from three to five or six 
stories, accommodating from eight hundred to two thousand pupils. 
Now, of course it is not necessary to point out that the higher the 
building the more pupils it may register and the narrower in pro- 
portion is the basement accommodation which must be used in wet 
weather; for the students are not allowed to remain in the class 
room during recess. Think of it for a moment — two thousand pu- 
pils crowded together into a close basement on a damp, foul day ! 
Do you imagine they derive much benefit from the "recreation 
hour" ? 

All intelligent men and women will agree that the crowded con- 




DISTRICT SCHOOL N>'. II, HAMILTON COUNTY 




DISTRICT SCHOOL No. 33, LINCOLN COUNTY 




ABIE PUBLIC SCHOOL 




TAYLOR I'UIiLIC SCHOOL 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



97 




P W/^/^ , 






THE COUNTRY SCHOOLHOUSE AS IT IS 







THE MODEL SCHOOLHOUSE AND GROUNDS 

dition and fearful lack of sanitary measures in many of our schools 
is nothing less than criminal. If we arc going to build bodies and 
brains for useful men and women, the conditions inust be favorable, 
and viewed even from the standpoint of political economy, hygiene 
and physical culture in the school are absolutely indispensable. Un- 
less the most careful attention is given to these details, the herding 



98 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



together of the children causes a weakening of the moral forces, 
spreads disease, and sends out, poorly equipped for fighting the 
battles of life, the children who are to represent us in the years to 
come. Blessed is that community which has on its school board 
large-hearted men of broad and liberal culture. At least one o.' 
these should be a live, progressive physician who loves his profes- 
sion and his fellowmen. 



THE HOPE OF OUR COUNTRY 

The country schools have great advantages in many respects. 
They are rarely more than one story high — a tremendous advantage. 
They are usually of ample size. The heat is supplied by wood stoves 
or grates, and in damp weather the children are allowed to remain 
in the class room instead of being turned into a dark basement with 
hundreds of other little pupils. The hope of this country rests 
largely with the country schools, where the educational advantages 
may not be so good, but where the physical advantages are far 

greater. 

But why not provide such 
places as the pupils will love to 
gather in? A pretty little 
school building, with grounds 
neatly laid off and a few shrubs 
and flowers to add attractive- 
ness, will often arouse and in- 
spire pupils £>s nothing else will. 
We present a view of the aver-, 
age country school and also a 
view and ground-plan of such a 
school as we would recommend 

Plan of Model bchoolhouse and Grounds ^q widc-awakc and prOgrCSsive 

school boards. It does not cost one bit more to build a model school- 
house than to build a poor one. The children themselves would 
gladly plant flowers and trees, and keep the grounds in proper 
condition. 

The heating arrangements and the poor sanitary arrangements of 
the city schools are multiplying tuberculosis and many other dis- 
eases, and gradually undermining the health of the little pupils who 
attend them. Very few homes are kept at the high temperature of 




1 







, E.H.M«^»i^ 



SCRIBNHR rUBl.lC SCHOOL 




BURWELL rUBI^IC .SCHOOL 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



lOI 



the city schoolroom, and even before the children get to their homes, 
after being cooped up for hours in an overheated and ill-ventilated 
atmosphere, they have become chilled to the bone, and the founda- 
tion is laid for diseases that will wreck the strongest constitution. 
It is this sudden transition from extreme heat to extreme cold that 
causes many a little one to draw in his chest and round his shoulders 

in the effort to "hug" 
himself away from the 
cold. 

Now, it may not be 
possible to change the 
conditions which prevail 
as to the size and shape 
of the school bui' Ingand 
the manner of its heating, 
but can we not do some- 
thing toward ventilating 
the rooms? How about 
opening the windows 
while the pupils are at the 
board, when they are out 
at recess, and at various 
other times during the 
day? A little attention 
on the part of the teacher 
will do much to help mat- 
ters in this direction- 

In most of the coun- 
try schools window ven- 
tilation is usually the 
kind that has been pro- 
vided. For such schools 
we i^rcscnt a picture 
which will give a good 
plan for ventilating. If possible the window should be run to the 
ceiling, thus allowing foul air to escape. Or a transom should be 
built between the window and the ceiling and open inward from the 
top. — Johnson's Physical Culture. 




1. Escape holes in movable board for exit of foul air. 
2 Board to break the force of draft of fresh air. 
3. Entrance of fiesh air. 



I02 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 




The Country Schoolhouse and its Grounds: 
Agricultural Training 



An Aid to 



BY THE HON. JAMES WILSON, SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE 

[Reprinted from The Youth's Companion, March 14, 1901.] 

Sometimes the country schoolhouse has extensive and well-kept 
grounds, but oftener it is in a pasture, a cultivated field or a wood- 
lot. In these instances, although the playgrounds are usually ade- 
quate, the opportunities for object-lessons in natural history and in 
various profitable but incidental lines of study may not be recognized. 

The young farmer cannot be introduced to nature too soon, and 
should never be long separated from her object-lessons. Suitable 
text-books designed to lead him by easy stages are still few and not 
well arranged. 

We live in an age of specialized work, and men of education must 
usually, if they would become impressive, confine their inquiries to 
one channel. The farmer deals with soils, plants and animals, with 
heat and cold — in short, with nature in her varied forms and mani- 
festations. It would seem wise, in the interest of the commonwealth 
and of himself, that he should be made thoroughly acquainted with 
soils and their composition, with the life of plants and animals, and 
with the various species that may be expected to flourish in particu- 
lar localities and climates. 

Yet although the farm keeps the balance of trade in the nation's 




HIGH SCHOOL RECITATION ROOM, SCRIBNKR 




HIGH SCHOOL DKPARTMENT, SCRHiMvR 




ixti;r-"\ii:i)Iate department, scribner 








,.-^4 







GRAMMAR DEPARTMENT, SCRIBNER 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA I05 

favor, furnishes two-thirds of our exports, contributes to our manu- 
facturing supremacy by providing cheap food for our mechanics, 
comparatively little has been done toward educating the farmer for 
his work. To be sure, the United States has done more for him than 
any other country. In 1862, Congress endowed agricultural colleges 
to teach the sciences relating to agriculture. In 1867, experiment 
stations were provided for, where research might be made into the 
operations of nature. 

But considering that Americans pay more money for public educa- 
tion than any other people on earth, a comparatively small proportion 
of the sum is devoted to stimulating and aiding that half of our popu- 
lation who cultivate the soil. The tendency of primary education has 
been to lead the country youth away from the farm instead of help- 
ing him in the study of those sciences relating to production. It 
would be politic and patriotic to incorporate into the farm youth's 
education some knowledge that shall bear more directly upon his 
future life and work. 

And first, the grounds around the schoolhouse could be made to 
speak out in a language easily intelligible to the youth whose eyes 
have been familiar with nature from the days of the cradle. 

Flowers should abound in the schoolhouse groimds. They are 
among the best of educators, for they develop taste and a love for the 
beautiful, and make men sensitive to the attractive and lovely, in 
town or country, in field or forest. 

Moreover, the flower of the plant has an economic use, concerning 
which the scholar should be informed. Nature designed it to invite 
the wayfaring insect, and we can employ it to delight the child in its 
first journey away from home. Little people, in fair weather, should 
not sit long at a time on benches in school. The lawn should be ar- 
ranged for their pleasure, and in any such arrangement flowers can- 
not be omitted. Although their language will not be immediately 
understood, the child will, by gradual acquaintance, learn to know 
and love them. The country boy is usually bashful, and has little to 
say to new acquaintances; the flowers would get into his confidence 
sooner than most strangers. He would not miss home and ini>ther 
and familiar things so much. 

Instructive lessons about annuals, biennials and perennials could 
be taught as the years go by. The names of the plants and of tjuii 
several parts would be memorized nnich more readily from the livini: 



I06 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

subject than from a book. At recesses and during the noon hour 
much of the plant-lore given to the more advanced students would be 
dealt out by them to the beginners. Young people do not hide things 
under a bushel. The study of nature's book is never regarded as a 
task, and what she tells us in her own peculiar way finds almost al- 
ways an open mind and a retentive memory. 

In the very best rural schools are found herbariums, fishes pre- 
served in alcohol, samples of rocks, soils, woods and minerals. T^here 
are few districts in any of our states that cannot afford thes^ collec- 
tions, and there is no good reason why the country teacher should not 
use the out-of-door object-lessons that are so abundant, so inviting, 
and altogether so appropriate for the best development of the young 
farmer. 

Heat and moisture are good servants of the cultivator when con- 
trolled, but severe masters where, through ignorance, they are per- 
mitted to have their own way. Their potent influence on production 
is generally overlooked in the education of the farmer. The subject 
is certainly neglected entirely in most of our country schools, im- 
portant though it may be to the future welfare of the child. 

Advanced research to discover the effects of heat and moisture on 
production is receiving some attention at our agricultural colleges, 
and valuable results are available to the students who reach the 
colleges ; but these are comparatively few in number. The state col- 
lege endowed by Congress offers to the farmer a kind of intermediate 
stage of education, but he is given no practical beginning in the com- 
mon school, and there is no university in which, after graduating 
from college, he might carry on specialization. 

Many of us have distinct recollections of disagreeable schoolhouses 
and grounds. We ought to arrange matters so that different impres- 
sions will be made on the little people who now venture from home 
and go to school. We should associate as many attractive things 
around the schoolhouse as can be brought together, just as we make 
the parlor the mo^t beautiful room at home in order that our friends 
may be pleased while they visit us. 

Flowers and plants are most pleasing additions to the house as 
well as to the lawn. Students should be taught the daily care neces- 
sary to have healthy and beautiful flowering plants, the uses of the 
spray, and the remedies for infesting or destructive insects. 

The children of a schoolroom will watch with interest the unfold- 



''^ 



"Th? 










SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA lOQ 

ing of new leaves, the first appearance of a bud, and finally the 
bursting petals of a beautiful blossom. Without much extra labor 
the paths that should be artistically laid out on each schoolhouse 
lawn can be edged with neat, blooming border plants. The pupils 
would always delight in caring for and protecting them. 

Flower-beds on the lawn are pretty if properly made. A few hya- 
cinth bulbs planted in the fall make almost as early reminders of 
spring as the hepatica or the ambitious crocus that laughs at a snow- 
bank. The hyacinth bulb is interesting from the moment it peeps 
through the ground, and its flowers are satisfactory, too, because 
they last longer than those of most other early bloomers. 

The gathering of seeds from all trees, shrubs and plants should be 
encouraged. If all the seeds be saved, pupils whose parents have not 
encouraged flower culture may be induced to make little flower-gar- 
dens at home, and incidentally to take pride in the appearance of 
the yard. 

Small trees and shrubs look well set out as a hedge, besides fur- 
nishing a shade on one side of the lawn. Each girl might have a 
flowering shrub planted for her, the variety to be of her own selec- 
tion, and it should then become her special care. 

Several things might be done to make the schoolhouse yard inter- 
esting to the students. Upon the advent of each new pupil a tree, 
native to the latitude, might be planted. This would give a certain 
dignity to each new pupil. 

Much sentiment has attached to trees in all lands and in all ages. 
Acorns from the oaks of Mount Vernon were presented to the Tsar 
of Russia by a brother of the late Senator Sumner. They were 
planted, by order of the emperor, in the imperial preserves of St. 
Petersbui-g, and there grew into fine trees, the acorns from which 
were, in their turn, brought back to the United States by Mr. Hitch- 
cock, then ambassador to Russia, and now Secretary of the Interior, 
These acorns will be planted at Mount Vernon, near their "grand- 
parents." 

After a recent visit to England, Senator Hoar of Massachusetts 
brought back young British oaks from the royal forest of Dean and 
chestnuts from the estates of the Earl of Ducie. These will be 
studied by our foresters as they grow in the mall at Washington. 
Within the enclosure of the Botanical Gardens at Washington many 
trees, planted by prominent American statesmen, have grown to be 
objects of great interest and beauty. 



no SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEP.RASKA 

Charles Sumner planted a European hornbeam ; Thaddeus Stevens 
an oriental plane-tree ; Senator Beck an American elm ; President 
Hayes a rare variety of oak ; Senator Hoar a cedar of Lebanon. A 
Scotch plane-tree planted by Senator Frye is pointed out to all vis- 
itors. There are many others, but enough have been mentioned to 
show the interest that attaches to a tree carrying the name of the 
person by whom it was planted. 

Young people attending the country school would soon learn the 
names of all the trees indigenous to the neighborhood. If the pupils 
would gather the seeds of the trees at different seasons when they 
are ripe, the teacher would have an object-lesson to assist her in con- 
ducting nature studies. Methods of preserving these seeds through 
the winter and the habits of growth of the different varieties would 
be studied with intense interest and never forgotten. As the pupils 
visited new neighborhoods and new countries, their early forestry 
lessons would be valuable in enabling them to add to their knowledge 
of sylviculture. 

The great life-work of Senator Morrill of Vermont, assisted by 
other far-seeing American statesmen, was the endowment of insti- 
tutions in each state in the Union, where the sons and daughters of 
American farmers could study the sciences that relate to agriculture 
and domestic economy. A great question, however, is the proper 
preparation of young country people for entering these agricultural 
colleges. The preparation must be given by the country school 
teacher, and the query presents itself, "How shall the teacher be 
fitted for this work?" 

In most of our states we have normal schools for teachers, yet 
some of our state agricultural colleges have not succeeded simply 
because the instructors had been educated in institutions that gave 
them too little of the sciences relating to agriculture. 

Progress is being made; the student of soils, plants, and ani- 
mals is finding his place in the classroom ; but the giving of direction 
and bent toward the agricultural college must begin with the farm- 
ers' children in the country schoolhouse, and to this end we should 
have object-lessons on the schoolhouse grounds. 

The dry ranges of the great West are being rapidly destroyed by 
injudicious grazing. The beautiful valleys of the mountain states 
are being rendered barren by the unwise application of water. The 
great wheat-fialds from the Missouri river to the Pacific ocean are 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 113 

losing- their fertility, and the grains are losing their nitrogenous con- 
tent by continual robbery of the soil. Summer fallowing and the 
sowing of one crop in two years are becoming universal. 

The young farmer attending the district school could readily be 
taught what a plant gets from the soil and what it gets from the air. 
The several grasses could be planted, and their office in filling the 
soil with humus, enabling the soil to retain moisture, could be ex- 
plained. The legumes — peas, beans, clover and alfalfa — could be 
grown in the schoolhouse yard, and during recess or at the noon 
hour the teacher could interest the students by digging up a young 
pea or clover root and showing the nodules, whose office it is to bring 
the free nitrogen from the atmosphere and fix it in the soil. 

The pupils would see that some relation exists between the size 
of the nodule and the fruit of the legume. As a plant grows older 
and blossoms and seeds begin to form, the matter found in the 
nodules rises in the plant to help make seeds, leaving the nodules 
like old egg-shells from which the birds have been hatched. 

The microscope could be brought into use in the study of the soil, 
and microscopic plants could be studied, special attention being paid 
to those that change fertilizer into plant-food. 

Entomological studies might very well be carried on around the 
country schoolhouse. The wild bee goes from flower to flower of 
the clover plant seeking pollen with which to build her cells or honey 
to store in them. She performs a very useful labor for the farmer 
by carrying pollen from flower to flower. 

The people around Charleston who raise early cucumbers in green- 
houses for the early markets find it necessary to use the brush in dis- 
tributing pollen, but they take care to have a swarm of bees to do the 
work as soon as the weather is warm enough. 

Tens of thousands of Smyrna fig-trees that should produce the 
most valuable fig of commerce, brought from the Turkish empire 
and planted on the Pacific coast, have never ripened fruit except 
when artificial pollination was practised. An entomologist, visiting 
the trees, told the owners that what was needed was a little wasp 
that lives on a wild fig in the neighborhood of Smyrna. After re- 
peated efforts, that little fly has been brought from its Asiatic home, 
and is now domiciled in the fig orchards, ready to help the people of 
that neighborhood to begin a new industry. 

The attention of the young farmer at the country schoolhouse 



114 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

could be g^railually drawn, by easy staples, from one insect to an- 
other. A little help by the teacher would arouse in the student 
intelligent interest in our insect friends and enemies. 

Children should be cncourac^ed to brings specimens to school, col- 
lections could be made, and the student's name associated with every 
new discovery. In all these ways the student can be brought to an 
understanding of nature, living and inanimate, to a knowledge that 
will develop head and hand and heart. 



I 




-^- 




SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



117 







DIAGRAM No. 1 

This illustrates the school grounds after some years' growth, the grounds 
being originally laid out after the plan shown in Diagram No. 2. 



Ornamentation of the School Grounds 



BY WILLIAM H. BARNES, SECRETARY OF HORTICULTURE^ TOPEKA, KAN. 



Seeing in The Youth's Companion your article on this subject, I 
beg to offer the following : 

I have long been an advocate of the ornamentation of our district 
school grounds, and have frequently addressed Kansas audiences 
upon the subject. 

I long ago discovered that the real reason why they are not made 
attractive is their limited area. Our people in the West, notwith- 
standing the low value of land, brought with them the idea that a 
quarter-acre or half-acre was enough land to waste ( ?) around a 
schoolhouse. Outdoor exercise (recess) is an essential part of an 
education, and a herd of scholars playing ball, duck-on-a-rock, quoits, 
leap-frog, skipping ropes, rolling hoops or tag in the public road 
should be prohibited. If the school director should happen, along 
with his team, and the team shies at the children or their belongings, 
he would grumble and complain as do others. 

If we ornament the grounds with "keep off the grass" signs, 
where will they play? In the West, where land is cheap, we should 
have taken five acres for grounds about each schoolhouse. The dif- 



ii8 



SCIIOOI. lU'ILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NliBRASKA 



trict should put up swings of various kinds, furnish ball clubs, skip- 
ping ropes, quoits and croquet sets just as freely as globes, maps and 
models and other indoor paraphernalia, and the teachers should be 
interested in the plays. 

Then, two acres could be parked and beautified, with the house or 
iwzi'cr of beauty in the midst of a lovely setting. 

The scholars should be organized into an improvement club. This 
club should be subdivided into working committees ; these commit- 
tees should each control and care for a certain line of work and 
improvement. 

There is Johnny Doe. He lives in the timber, knows every tree 
l)y sight. Put him at the head of the shade-tree committee. With a 
little assistance and encouragement he and his committee will not 
only dig, bring and plant the trees, but will care for them lovingly 
as long as they attend that school, and woe betide the unrul ipy " k" 
that dare cut a notch in, or a switch from, one of them. 

Another committee looks 



after the w-alks ; another after 
the fences, hitching-posts and 
buildings ; another after the 
hardy climbing vines to cover 
the outhouses and clamber 
over the schoolhouse itself ; 
another to look after the beds 
of annuals or perennials from 
which the teacher's desk re- 
ceives a daily bouquet. 

Columns might be written 
to show the lasting effect such 
an arrangement would have 
upon the character of each 
pupil, and the wholesome effect 
it would have on the commun- 
ity or district. There are yet 
hundreds of localities where a 
few acres could readily be 
added to the present school grounds, two acres for adornment, three 
acres for playground, all laid out with judgment and cared for by the 
pupils, the necessary expenses being paid by the district. 




SKETCH OF PLANTINO 

DIAGRAM No. 2 




HARVARD IIIOIT SCHOOL 




BEATRICE HIGH SCHOOL 



SCHOOL DUILDIXGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 121 

Hints on Rural School Grounds 

BY PROF. L. H. BAILEY, CORNELL UNIVERSITY 

One's training for the work of life is begun in the home and 
fostered in the school. This training is the result of a direct and 
conscious effort on the part of the parent and teacher, combined 
with the indirect result of the surroundings in which the child is 
placed. The surroundings are more potent than we think, and they 
are usually neglected. It is probable that the antipathy to farm life 
is often formed before the child is able to reason on the subject. An 
attractive playground will do more than a profitable wheat crop to 
keep the child on the farm. 

The Facts. — Bare, harsh, cheerless, immodest — these are the 
facts about the average rural school ground. 

Children cannot be forced' to like the school. They like it only 
when it is worth liking. And when they like it, they learn. The 
fanciest school apparatus will not atone for a charmless school 
ground. 

The following sentences are extracted from the "Report of the 
Committee of Twelve on Rural Schools" of the National Educa- 
tional Association (1897) : 

"The rural schoolhouse, generally speaking, in its character and 
surroundings is depressing and degrading. There is nothing about 
it calculated to cultivate a taste for the beautiful in art or nature." 

"If children are daily surrounded by those influences that elevate 
them, that make them clean r .1 well-ordered, that make them love 
flowers and pictures and proper decorations, they at last reach that 
degree of culture where nothing else will please them. When they 
grow up and have homes of their own, they must have them clean, 
neat, bright with pictures, and fringed with shade-trees and flowers, 
for they have been brought up to be ha])i\v in no other environ- 
ment." 

"The rural schoolhouse should be built in accordance with the 
laws of sanitation and modern civilization." 



122 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

HOW TO BEGIN A REFORM 

We will assume that there is one person in each rural school dis- 
trict who desires to renovate and improve the school premises. 
There may be two. If this person is the school commissioner or 
the teacher, so much the better. 

Let this person call a meeting of the patrons of the schoolhouse. 
Lay before the people the necessity of improving the premises. The 
cooperation of the most influential men in the district should be se- 
cured before the meeting is called. 

Propose a "bee" for improving the school grounds. John Smith 
will agree to repair the fence (or take it away, if it is not needed). 
Jones will plow and harrow the ground, if plowing is necessary. 
Brown will sow the grass seed. Black and Green and White will 
go about the neighborhood with their teams for trees and bushes. 
Some of these may be got in the edges of the woods, but many of 
the bushes can be picked up in front yards. Others will donate their 
labor toward grading, planting and cleaning up the place. The 
whole thing can be done in one day. Perhaps Arbor Day can be 
chosen. 

THE PLAN OF THE PLACE 

This is the most important part of the entire undertaking — the 
right kind of a plan for the improvement of the grounds. The per- 
son who calls the meeting should have a definite plan in mind, and 
this plan may be discussed and adopted. 

Begin with the Fundamentals, not with the Details. — 
If an artist is to make a portrait, he first draws a few bold strokes, 
representing the general outline. He "blocks out" the picture. With 
the general plan well in mind, he gradually works in the incidentals 
and the details — the nose, eyes, beard. 

Most persons reverse this natural order when they plant their 
grounds. They first ask about the kinds of roses, the soil for snow- 
balls, how far apart hollyhocks shall be planted. It is as if the artist 
first asked about the color of the eyes and the fashion of the neck- 
tie ; or as if the architect first chose the color of paint and then 
planned his building. The result of this type of planting is that 
there is no plan, and the yard means nothing when it is done. Be- 
gin with the plan, not with the plants. 




iP l f ir;wil» i '? ^>»Vg>--'r^ - 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



125 



The Place Should Mean Something. — The home ground 
should be homelike, retired and cozy. The school ground should be 
set off from the bare fields, and should be open enough to allow of 
playgrounds. It should be hollow — well-planted on the sides, open 
in the interior. The side next the highway should contain little 
planting. The place should be a picture, not a mere collection of 
trees and bushes. Fig. 25 shows what I mean. 









1> ■ ^:=C^^- 



■^ 









~-^' S 



^ ^-K^k 










'r^ 












f „ .t.pOttT*' 







Fig. 25.— a picture, of which a schoolhouse is the central figure 




As seen in the picture (Fig. 25), this style of planting seems to 
be too elaborate and expensive for any ordinary place. But if the 
reader will bear with me, he shall learn otherwise. 

Keep the Center of the Place Open. — Do not scatter the trees 
over the place. They will be in the way. The boys will break them 
down. Moreover, they do not look well when scattered over the 
whole area. When an artist makes a picture with many people in 
it,, he does not place the persons one by one all over his canvas; he 
masses them. Thereby he secures a stronger effect. He focuses at- 
tention, rather than distributes it. 

The diagrams (Figs. 26, 27) make this conception plain. The 
same trees and shrubs can be used to make either a nursery or a 
picture. But it is more difficult to make the nursery, and to keep 



126 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



l^ 



^ 



■J 






^ 




Fig 26 —Common or nursery tj'pe of planting 



it in order, because the trees grow one at a place in the sod, and they 

are exposed to acci- 
1 ^ i ^ dents. 

Go to the black- 
board. With four 
lines represent the 
borders of the 
school grounds, as 
in Fig. 28. Indicate 
the schoolhouse and 
the outbuildings. 

Existing trees 
may be located by 
small circles. Now 
you have the facts, 
or the fixed points. 
Xow put in the walks. The first fixed point is the front door. 
The other fixed point is the place or places at which the children 
enter the grounds. Join these points by the most direct and simplest 
curves possible. That is all there is of it. In many, or perhaps most 
places, the house is so near the highway that only a straight walk is 
possible or advisable. 
Next comes the 
planting. Let it be 
irregular and nat- 
ural, and represent 
it by a wavy line, as 
in Fig. 28. First of 
all, cover up the out- 
houses. Then plant 
heavily on the side, 
or in the direction of 
the prevailing wind. 
Leave openings in 
vour plan wherever 

there are views to Fig. 27. -The proper or pictorialtype of planting 

be had of fine old trees, attractive farm homes, a brook, or a beauti- 
ful hill or field. Throw a handful of shrubs into the corners by 
the steps and about the bare comers of the building. 





DISTRICT SCHOOL No. 9, DODGE COUNTY 







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Ifr ^: 




k:. 1^ 


l~OE~' 


r 


r "^M 






^^^^It^Bk^''' ' *''^'^ 


^ : 

1 

! 

1 





PILGER PUBLIC .SCHOOL 




ATHENS SCHOOL, AUBURN 
Six Rooms 




ANTIOCH SCHOOL, AUBURN 
Eight Rooms 




M 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA I5I 

Rural School Conditions in Nebraska 

A general idea of the kind of school buildings in this state may 
be gathered from the illustrations and descriptions in this publica- 
tion, from Statistical Table No. II, showing the number of frame, 
brick, stone, log and sod schoolhouses in each county in the state 
during the school year 1900-1901, and Table No. I, showing the 
changes in the number of schoolhouses of the different materials 
from the year 1869 to 1901. Space forbids extended description of 
conditions in each of the ninety counties in the state, but we here- 
with submit information gathered by letter and by personal visitation 
in a number of representative counties. The conditions in different 
parts of the state are so vastly different that personal inspection 
only would convince one of it or impress one with the difference in 
problems presented to any one concerned or interested in school 
conditions in Nebraska and their improvement. 

BANNER COUNTY 

Here is a county in the extreme western portion of the state on 
the Wyoming line, without a high school or a railroad in it. At the 
county seat two teachers are employed, a term of eight months of 
school is held during the year, and the principal is paid $30 per 
month. One-half the number of schoolhouses in the county are fur- 
nished with patent desks and slate blackboards. The other half 
have home-made desks and wooden blackboards. There are five 
districts in the county having practically no outhouses on the school 
grounds. 

BLAINE COUNTY 

Blaine county is situated in the central portion of the state. In 
this county there are nine rural schoolhouses. Two of these are 
frame and the rest are built of sod. In two there are patent desks, 
in two others there are both home-made and patent desks, and in five 
schoolhouses there are home-made desks only. Three buildings are 
furnished with slate blackboard, while the others have painted 
boards. One district has two separate outhouses, three have two 
under the same roof, and the rest have one or practically none. Two 
of the schools in Blaine county graduated pupils from the eighth 
grade last year, which is the highest grade in any school in the 



15^ SCnOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

county, although in some schools higher branches are being taught. 
Teachers are being paid from $25 to $40 per month. The county 
superintendent writes that quite an interest is being manifested by 
both patrons and pupils and that in the near future Blaine county 
will rank among the first in education. 

BOX BUTTE COUNTY 

This county is in the extreme northwestern part of the state. 
There are about sixty schoolhouses in the county, and nearly one-half 
the children in the county are in the city of Alliance. There are 
sixty-five square miles unorganized into school districts with per- 
haps a score or two of children living in this unorganized territory. 
About one-half the buildings have patent desks and the others home- 
made ones. Thirteen rooms have slate blackboards, five have hylo- 
plate, five have cloth, four have plaster and twenty-nine have wooden 
blackboards. Nearly all schools are supplied with maps and charts, 
and all but two furnish text-books to pupils. 

CASS COUNTY 

Cass county is situated in the eastern portion of the state on the 
Missouri river. There are an even hundred school districts in this 
county. Five of these are organized as high school districts, viz., 
Plattsmouth, Weeping Water, Louisville, Greenwood and Elm- 
wood. Union, Nehawka, Avoca, Eagle, Alvo, Murdock, South 
Bend and Murray are graded village schools employing two or 
three teachers. All the above are fairly well equipped with furni- 
ture, apparatus, etc. All except Nehawka and Murray are under the 
free text-book system. All the rural schools of the county have 
patent desks, though a considerable number have the senseless, noisy, 
out-of-repair folding desks. A large number of the schools have 
seats too large for the smaller pupils, and many of the desks are too 
far apart. This is a matter of great importance. One district has a 
paper blackboard, three have both wood and plaster, two have cloth, 
six hyloplate, thirteen wood, twenty-eight plaster and forty-seven 
have slate. Nearly all the blackboards are in good condition. Spe- 
cial attention has been paid to such matters. Ninety-five have two 
separate outhouses, three are under one roof and two have but one 
outhouse. Less than two years ago there were more than a dozen 
with but one outhouse. 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA I55 

DEUEL COUNTY 

Here is another county in the western portion of the state, large 
in area, largely unorganized, with the Union Pacific railroad pass- 
ing through the extreme southern portion and the Burlington just 
beyond the northern boundary. There are about fifty schools in the 
county, thirty of which have home-made desks. About twenty-five 
have slate blackboards and the others are supplied with wooden 
blackboards. Every schoolhouse in the county has two separate 
outhouses. 

HITCHCOCK COUNTY 

This county is in the southwestern portion of the state. Three- 
fourths of the schoolhouses are provided with patent desks. The 
others have home-made desks or some home-made and some patent 
ones. About one-fourth of them have slate blackboards, but the 
majority have plaster boards. One-half the districts have two sep- 
arate outhouses, the others having but one each. The latter are 
mostly small schools of a few pupils. Some of their school boards 
thought it wise to procure a bookcase instead of erecting an addi- 
tional outhouse. 

LINCOLN COUNTY 

This is a large county in the west-central portion of the state, 
forty-eight by fifty-four miles in extent. It is crossed from west to 
east by the Platte river and the Union Pacific railroad. There are 
more than twenty sod schoolhouses in this county, but the school- 
houses generally are quite well furnished. Sixty-two school grounds 
are fenced, mostly with barb wire, while sixty-four others are not 
fenced. There are one hundred twenty-four buildings with patent 
desks and only two with home-made ones. Slate blackboards are 
found in seventy-seven houses, plaster boards in seventeen houses, 
wood in thirteen, hyloplate in eleven and cloth blackboards in eight 
school buildings. Seventy-five districts have a coal house, forty-one 
have a coal box. Eighty-four districts have two separate outhouses, 
twenty-four have two under one roof, sixteen have but one such 
building, and two have none. 



1S6 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

RICHARDSON COUNTY 

This county is in the southeastern corner of the state, bordering 
on Kansas and Missouri. During the last term five new school- 
houses were erected, but as the county is an old one and was early 
settled there are many more that should be replaced soon. There 
are over one hundred schools in the county and all are provided 
with patent desks. Forty have slate blackboards, twenty have plaster, 
forty-four have wooden, and a few have some cloth or paper or hylo- 
plate. Nearly all schools are fairly well equipped, but a few of the 
poorest districts are very inadequately provided with anything. 

SARPY COUNTY 

This is a county in the east-central portion of the state, south of 
Douglas of which Omaha is the county seat. All schools are pro- 
vided with patent desks, a few of which are in bad repair, and many 
of these are being replaced with single desks. About one-half the 
schools have slate blackboard. The others have plaster or painted 
boards. All have blackboards of some kind. This county has the 
two extremes in design of frame schoolhouses. The older buildings 
are of the familiar old box-car style, while the new ones are being 
built on modern plans. 

SAUNDERS COUNTY 

Saunders county is situated in the east-central portion of the 
state. Nearly all the schools in this county are provided with patent 
desks. There are a few home-made ones in two or three schools. 
Four-fifths of the schools have some slate blackboard ; many of them 
have nothing else. There are eight or ten with wooden boards, a 
few with plaster boards, and a few other schools with other kinds of 
boards, but all the schools in the county are provided with black- 
boards, and the slate boards are rapidly displacing all other kinds. 
There is not a district in the county without two outhouses, and 
only a few that have the two under one roof. 





i 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



129 




Fig. 28 —The blackboard plan 



Hoael 



You now have a plan to work to. 
It has been the work of five minutes 
at the blackboard. 

Sometimes the problem is not so 
simple as all this. There may be 
three entrances to the grounds and a 
highway on two sides. Fig. 29 is a 
plan made for such a place in west- 
ern New York. It was thought to be 
necessary to separate the play- 
grounds of the boys and girls. This 
was done by a wide hedge-row of bushes running back from the 
ichoolhouse. 

Perhaps some persons 
object to so much shrub- 
bery. They look upon it 
as mere brush. Very well, 
then use trees alone. But 
do not scatter them hit 
and miss over the place. 
Give room for the chil- 
dren to play ; and make 
the place a picture at the 
same time. Three or four 
trees may l)e planted near 
the building to shade it, 
but the heaviest planting 
should be on the sides. 

Making Tin-: Son. — In 
many cases the school 
yard is already level or well graded and has a good sod, and it is 
not necessary to plow it and re-seed it. It should be said that the 
sod on old lawns can be renewed without plowing it up. In the 
bare or thin places, scratch up the ground with an iron-toothed 
rake, apply a little fertilizer, and sow more seed. Weedy lawns arc 
those in which the sod is poor. It may be necessary to pull out the 
weeds ; but after they arc out, the land should be quickly covered 
witb sod, or they will come in again. Annual weeds, as pigweed, 
ragweed, can usually be crowded out by merely securing a heavier 




Fig. 29. — Suggestion.s for the planting of a school-yard 
upon four corners. From " Lessons with Plants." 



130 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

sod. A little clover seed will often be a good addition, for it sup- 
plies nitrogen, and has an excellent mechanical effect on the soil. 

The ideal time to prepare the land is in the fall, before the heavy 
rains come. Then sow in the fall, and again in early spring on a late 
snow. However, the work may be done in spring, but the danger is 
that it will be put off so long that the young grass will not become 
established before the dry, hot weather comes. 

The Kinds of Plants for the Main Planting. — We now come 
to the details — the particular kinds of plants to use. One great 
principle will simplify the matter: the main planting should be for 
foliage effects. That is, think first of giving the place a heavy bor- 
der mass. Flowers are mere decorations. 

Select those trees and shrubs which are the commonest, because 
they are cheapest, hardiest and most likely to grow. There is no 
district so poor and bare that enough plants cannot be secured, with- 
out money, for the school yard. You will find them in the woods, in 
old yards, along tlie fences. It is little matter if no one knows their 
" names. What is handsomer than a tangled fence-row ? 

Scatter in a few trees along the fence and about the buildings. 
Maples, basswood, elms, ashes, buttonwood, pepperidge, oaks, 
beeches, birches, hickories, poplars, a few trees of pine or spruce or 
hernlock — any of these are excellent. If the country is bleak, a 
rather heavy planting of evergreens about the border, in the place of 
so much shrubbery, is excellent. 

For shrubs, use the common things to be found in the woods and 
swales, together with roots which can be had in every old yard. 
Willows, osiers, witch-hazel, dogwood, wild roses, thorn apples, haws, 
elders, sumac, wild honeysuckles — these and others can be found in 
every school district. From the farmyards can be secured snow- 
balls, spireas, lilacs, forsythias, mock-oranges, roses, snowberries, 
barberries, flowering currants, honeysuckles and the like. 

Vines can be used to excellent purpose on the outbuildings or on 
the schoolhouse itself. The common wild Virginia creeper is the 
most serviceable. 

Kinds of Plants for Decoration. — Against these heavy borders 
and in the angles about the building many kinds of flowering plants 
can be grown. The flowers are much more easily cared for in such 
positions than they are in the middle of the lawn, and they also show 
off better. Hollyhocks are very effective. 




CRETI-; Illfiir SCHOOL 




FAIRVIEW SCHOOL, BEATRICE 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



133 



It is impossible to grow many flowers in the school ground under 
present conditions, for what is everybody's business is nobody's 
business ; and then, the place is neglected all through the summer. 




Fig. 31.— Trees enough in the center, but the place needs a background 







Fio. 32.— A row of willows makes the place atlraclive 



134 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

GENERAL REMARKS 

.\rore tlian one-third of all public schools will probably always be 
in the country. They will have most intimate relations with rural 
life. \\"e must make that life attractive to the pupils. 

In Europe there are school gardens, and similar plans are recom- 
mended for this country. It is certainly desirable that some area be 
set aside for the actual cultivation of plants by the children, and for 
the growing of specimens to be used in the schoolroom. However, 
the conditions of Europe are very dilTerent from ours. In the rural 
school in Germany and other countries, the schoolhouse is the teach- 
er's home. He lives in it or by it. The summer vacation is short. 
In this country, there is no one to care for the rural school ground 
in the long summer vacation. Teachers change frequently. It is 
impossible to have uniformity and continuity of purpose. In the 
Old Worlds the rural schools are in the hamlets. 

We shall be very glad to correspond w'ith any persons who are in- 
terested in improving school premises, either on the lines herein sug- 
gested, or in other directions. The improvement must come, or, one 
by one, the rural schools will die out for lack of pupils. In the strug- 
gle for existence, the pupils will more and more seek the more at- 
tractive schools. There must be rural schools, whether in the open 
country or in the hamlet ; and wherever they are, they must be 
cheered and brightened. 

A Flower Day every October would be a fitting complement of 
Arbor Day. Already flower shows have been held in various rural 
schools. They are symbols of the harvest. We want to focalize this 
movement in the coming year. We call upon every citizen for sym- 
pathy and cooperation. 

A revolution in rural school grounds will not come suddenly. 
Here and there a beginning will be made, and slowly the great work 
will spread. 






• • • ."•VST' jJi '• . * •J 





o 

o ^ 
H 

^ 8 






SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 137 

The Blair High School 

The new high school building at Blair was erected during the 
school year 1899-1900 at a cost of nearly $40,000. This amount in- 
cludes site, sidewalks, heating apparatus and about seven hundred 
dollars' worth of new furniture. Without these necessary accessor- 
ies the building cost fully thirty thousand dollars. To pay for this 
building the School District City of Blair voted $32,000 in bonds, 
running twenty years with a ten-year option, with interest at four 
per cent. These bonds were sold at a premium of several hundred 
dollars, and the entire proceeds, together with nearly eight thousand 
dollars in cash in the treasury of the district, were expended in the 
erection of this magnificent building, under the supervision of the 
board, the architect, Mr. John Latenser of Omaha, and a superin- 
tendent of construction in the employ of the board. 

The total length of the building is 126 feet, its width is 79 feet. 
Each end or wing is about 34 by 79 feet, and the central portion is 
nearly 60 feet square. It extends east and west, facing south. The 
main fronts are in the south and east. It is built of dark red pressed 
brick, with red stone trimmings, and with slate roof. The basement 
contains a boiler and fuel room in the northwest corner, toilet rooms 
under the tw^enty-five by twenty-eight foot schoolrooms, and vacant 
rooms in the three other corners. The first floor is devoted exclu- 
sively to primary and fifth grade pupils, and the second floor to the 
high school. The old Central building, containing the sixth, seventh, 
and eighth grades, is located to the northwest of the new building, 
but on the same block. 

All the walls shown on the first floor plan extend down through 
the basement to the foundation, with the exception of those between 
the hall and the two wardrobes near the center of the .building ; and 
all those in and surrounding the two wings, the cast and west ends, 
extend up to the roof. The inner walls of the central portion stop 
at the second floor, and the entire central portion forms on the second 
floor the high school assembly room. On the first floor there are si.x 
grade rooms. The two north central ones are occupied by third and 
fourth grades, each with a seating capacity of forty-eight pupils. 
In these the children face east, and each room is lighted by five 
windows on the north, to the left of the children, and hall and door 



I3S SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

windows to the right. There is slate blackboard on the front and 
rear walls of these two rooms, three and one-half feet in width, and 
above the front blackboard is another blackboard three feet in width, 
for writing copies, drills, and practice work. In each corner room 
there are five windows to the left of the children and two at the rear 
of the room. All east, south and west windows on both floors have 
opaque green shades with adjustable roller fixtures, permitting the 
rollers to be lowered from the top. Blackboards extend across the 
two inner walls of each corner room, three and one-half feet wide 
with three feet more above in the front, and three and one-half feet 
wide to the right. In every room there is an unbroken front wall from 
corner to corner. There is a teacher's closet set into the wall to the 
right of the pupils. The ceilings are nearly twelve feet high. The 
pupils pass through the wardrobe and enter the rear of the room. 
The wardrobes are three feet six inches wide and have hooks num- 
bered from one to sixty on the longer side. The steam-heated air 
enters each room near the ceiling, and the foul air vent is close to the 
floor, both openings being on the inner side wall of the room. The 
board of education room is used temporarily as a library. There is 
a drinking fountain on each floor. Each corner room has a seating 
capacity of fifty-four pupils. The two east ones are used for first 
and second grades, and the two west ones for the fifth grade. There 
are two other primary ward buildings in the city, but from the fifth 
grade up all pupils are concentrated at the new and old Central 
buildings. 

The high school assembly and study room has a seating capacity 
at present of 200 pupils, which may be increased to 225, leaving 
ample room for aisles. All the desks in the building are single ones. 
The pupils face east, receiving the main light from the north and 
left. The north windows are a little larger than the south ones. The 
ceiling of the assembly room is sixteen feet high, and is a beautiful 
design in corrugated metal. There are no pillars or posts in the 
room. Ten incandescent lamps, sixteen or thirty-two candle power 
at option, light the room at night. Slate blackboard extends across 
the front of the room, except at the opening, where there are double 
doors. There is a platform two steps high and six by fourteen 
feet in the front of the room. In the rear of the room near the cor- 
ners are four bookcases built into the room, two on each side, wit' 
niches above for statuary. There are two registers or openings fo 



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SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 143 

the entrance of the steam-heated air near the center of the room, and 
a foul air exit in each corner. 

THE BASEMENT 

The girls use the east entrance to the building, exclusively, and 
the boys tlie west. After passing through the outer doors pupils 
may pass down to the toilet rooms in the basement in privacy, or up 
into the main hall. The toilet rooms also have outdoor north en- 
trances for the use of the pupils of the old Central, and a trellis 
fence extends from one building to the other, dividing the grounds. 
As Blair has no sewerage system, an improved system of dry closets 
is in use in the toilet rooms. The northeast and southwest corner 
basement rooms may be used in stormy weather for play or dinner, 
by the girls and boys respectively. The building is heated with 
steam. Radiators have been placed in halls and offices, but for the 
schoolrooms the indirect system, or gravity system, of heating and 
ventilating is used. The rooms in the basement directly below and 
corresponding to the first floor wardrobes are cold air chambers. 
There is no opening from these into the basement rooms, but there is 
a door into the hall or corridor. The basement window of these cold 
air rooms is kept open during the day, and the cold fresh air enters, 
is heated as it passes over and through coils of steam pipes, and then 
it passes up through flues to the rooms above, which it enters above 
the blackboards. By crank and chain the teacher may regulate the 
temperature of the fresh air that enters her room without reducing 
the amount of air. The raising and lowering of a damper attached to 
the chain permits the air to pass between the steam-heated coils, or 
around them, or partly between and partly around them. Foul air 
vents or exits are near the floor line, those of the second floor rooms 
being directly above the first floor inlets of fresh air; the first floor 
outlets are built in between and divided from the two fresh air flues ; 
thus the columns of air in the foul air flues arc heatf^d and kept ris- 
ing. The foul air vents for the two middle rooms on the first floor 
are in the floor, and galvanized iron ducts near the ceiling of the 
basement carry the foul air to the southeast and southwest corner 
stacks. The fresh air for the central portion of the building enters 
through the basement windows of the rooms below the secretary's 
and superintendent's offices, and is conducted through tunnels under 
the basement floor to cold air chambers below the wardrobes in the 



144 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

hall of the first floor. A flue from each of these passes up to the 
high school assembly room on the second floor, where the two have 
outlet into the room through registers fifty by twenty by thirty inches 
each. The foul air vents for the assembly room are in the four cor- 
ners of the room, passing up and out through the ceiling and the 
highest parts of the roof. Steam and return pipes run from the boil- 
ers in the northwest corner to the system of direct radiation in the old 
Central building. 



I 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA I47 



Free High School Attendance 

Free attendance at public high schools for the graduates of our 
rural schools has agitated educational circles in Nebraska for many 
years. As each school district in the state is independent of all others 
in its organization, management and course of study, the pupils in 
rural commimities do not have the advantages of those who live in 
the cities and villages where high schools have been established. 
Various laws have been devised to provide free instruction for the 
graduates of the rural schools in the established high schools of the 
cities and villages, but these laws have been successively, declared un- 
constitutional or have proven to be unsatisfactory. That there is a 
demand for this free instruction cannot be successfully denied. The 
illustrations of the non-resident attendants at the high schools of 
Ord, Nelson and Auburn successfully prove this. In each of the 
high schools in these small cities there are enrolled a large number 
of pupils from the rural school districts round about. These pupils 
are, as a rule, and as their appearance indicates, the cream of the 
country schools, and not only maintain but raise the standard of the 
schools that they attend. Every pupil in Nebraska should be granted 
free school privileges from the kindergarten to the university, as 
many now are. 

HIGH SCHOOL CADETS 

The military spirit is quite rife in the state and has been since the 
Spanish-American war. In many of the cities of Nebraska with a 
census of from 2,000 to 8,000 are found high school cadet organiza- 
tions. The village of Elgin with a census of 250 children of school 
age has its company of high school cadets. 

LINCOLN COUNTY SUMMER SCHOOL 

On account of the lack of normal school facilities in the central 
and western portions of the state, summer schools held in connec- 
tion with teachers' county institutes are common there. This illus- 
tration shows the type of the bright young people who teach school 
in the central and western portions of the state. This school was 
held during the summer of 1901. 



148 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

WOMEN COUNTY SUPERINTENDENTS 

Among the teachers of Nebraska, including city superintendents 
and principals, the women outnumber the men about three or four 
to one. Among the county superintendents the reverse is true with 
interest. At the present time there are sixteen women and seventy- 
four men among the county superintendents in the state. During 
the past biennium there were eighteen women. Mrs. Eva J. Case of 
Webster county retired from office January 9 after seven years' 
faithful and efficient work in that capacity. Miss Bertha Thoelecke 
retired from the office of superintendent of Lincoln county schools 
on January 9, after two terms of faithful and efficient service. Lin- 
coln county is forty-eight by fifty-four miles in area, and is di- 
vided into 107 school districts. The dangers, privations and ex- 
posure to which the women county superintendents in the central 
and western portions of the state, the frontier counties, are exposed, 
are but little understood or appreciated, even by the people of their 
own counties. 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 159 



Our Illustrations 

The illustrations in this volume are believed to be fairly repre- 
sentative of the general appearance and condition of school buildings 
in Nebraska. Certain types, perhaps, predominate, and other typical 
buildings in the state are not represented, but a careful scrutiny of 
these illustrations and a study of Statistical Table No. I near the 
close of the volume, exhibiting the number of schoolhouses of wood, 
brick, stone, log and sod, respectively, will prevent one from form- 
ing a wrong impression of the actual material school conditions in 
Nebraska. The log schoolhouses form less than two per cent of 
the total number of schoolhouses in Nebraska, and the sod houses 
less than seven per cent of the total. Some of the latter may be 
valued at little more than the cost of the doors and door frames, the 
window sashes and window frames, the flooring, and the shingles 
where they have a shingle roof ; and from this low valuation we 
must range up all the way by hundreds, thousands, and tens of 
thousands of dollars to almost two hundred thousand dollars to in- 
clude the cost of all the several kinds of school buildings in the 
state. The value of school district property in the state is estimated 
at nearly ten millions of dollars. 

Although representative, these illustrations are not used here as 
models for school buildings. Some of them are far from it. Nearly 
all the photographs and cuts received at the state department are 
h.ere used, principally for the purpose of showing what exists in the 
state and the great differences in conditions. Some of the frame 
and brick buildings herein pictured are very poorly arranged within, 
incorrectly lighted, without any ventilation except by doors and 
windows, and sometimes when the arrangement of windows makes 
an excellent liglit any good results have been counteracted by an im- 
proper placing antl arrangement of the desks. The Sutherland rural 
schoolhouse in district No. 20 of Washington county, the new brick 
schoolhouse in district No. 3 of Fillmore county, the Calhoun build- 
ing, the Blair high school building and the Omaha buildings, with a 
few others, may be referred to as models. 

One great obstacle to the erection of better school buildings in 
Nebraska is tl e small size of many of the districts and their conse- 
quent low assessed valuation. The school laws of Nebraska say that 



l60 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

bonds for the purpose of purchasing a site for, and erecting thereon, 
a schoolhouse or schoolhouses may be voted and issued in an aggre- 
gate amount not to exceed five per cent of the last complete assess- 
ment of the taxable property of the district, except in districts having 
more than two hundred children of school age; in districts having 
two hundred or more children, the amount of bonded indebtedness 
must not exceed ten per cent of the last complete assessed valuation. 
In many rural school districts of Nebraska the assessed valuation is 
only a few thousand dollars, and five per cent of the amount will not 
raise five hundred dollars for the purchase of a site and the erection 
of a schoolhouse thereon ; sometimes not two-thirds of the amount 
can be realized. In many villages of the state employing three or 
four teachers, with a school census of 150 to 190 children, requiring 
a four-room school building, the total assessed valuation is often 
not in excess of $50,000, five per cent of which would not build 
much more than one-half of a good four-room school building. The 
remedy lies in larger, richer, more populous school districts. Small 
districts with a few children are too highly expensive. 

NEW OMAHA HIGH SCHOOL BUILDING 

Omaha, the metropolis of Nebraska, very naturally boasts of the 
finest high school building in the state. The east wing only of the 
new building is now completed at a cost of about $190,000. It was 
dedicated Saturday, February i, 1902, and on the following Monday 
morning the Omaha high school moved into its new commodious 
quarters. This wing contains about thirty rooms, including eighteen 
class rooms, two study rooms, laboratories, library, gymnasium, of- 
fice rooms, etc. The class rooms are twenty-four feet square and 
designed to accommodate thirty pupils each. The study rooms 
will seat about 20'o pupils in each. In place of cloak rooms 540 
double lockers are provided in the halls, and there are also twelve 
toilet rooms, four on each floor. The indirect system of steam heat- 
ing is used and the plenum system of fan ventilation. Natural slate 
blackboards are used throughout. The lighting is from the left and 
rear of the pupils as they are seated. The building is solid and sub- 
stantial in construction, artistic in exterior appearance and beautiful 
in interior finish, and constructed of the best material throughout. 
In future years the old high school building, of which all except 
the tower is now hidden from view from the east, will be removed 






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SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 163 

and a building similar to the illustration following that of the wing 
will take its place. 

DISTRICT SCHOOLS IN HALL COUNTY 

The school building in district No. 70 of Hall county was erected 
in the fall of 1886 at a cost of about $500. It contains patent desks, 
a blackboard made of poplar lumber and lampblack, but no appa- 
ratus. The schoolroom is heated by a stove and ventilated by win- 
dows. There is a cloak room, although it is probably in darkness, 
and the schoolroom is lighted by three windows on each side. 

The school building in district No. 51 was erected in 1888 at a 
cost of about $300. It contains patent desks, a small amount of 
slate blackboard and some charts. There is no entry way or cloak 
room, and, like the schoolhouse in district No. 70 and many others 
in all parts of Nebraska, it is lighted by three windows on each side. 
It is heated by a stove and ventilated by windows. 

DISTRICT SCHOOL NO. 54, CHERRY COUNTY 

This sod schoolhouse was erected in 1897 at a cost of $50. The 
photograph of it was probably taken during an eclipse. It contains 
home-made furniture, about five feet of painted blackboard and no 
apparatus. It is lighted by one window on each side. There is no 
system of ventilation and none is needed. The irregular appear- 
ance of the corners is caused by cattle rubbing against them. The 
building is now protected by a wire fence. The roof is covered with 
sod. This is not a typical Cherry county schoolhouse. Many good 
frame school buildings have been erected in that county within the 
past three years. 

DISTRICT SCHOOL NO. 69, ROCK COUNTY 

This building was not erected for school purposes. It is a home, 
but school is held in it. It was erected in 1895 and is furnished 
with modern desks, wooden blackboards, no apparatus and a stove. 
The lighting is, naturally enough, very poor, while the chief char- 
acteristic of the building is its warmth. 

WASHINGTON SCHOOL, NEMAHA COUNTY 

This school is in district No. 24, and is just the ordinary type of 
school building to be found in many school districts in the south- 



164 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

eastern portion of the state. The teacher, Miss Hattie Miller, and 
the county superintendent, W. C. Parriott, both appear in the 
illustration. 

DISTRICT SCHOOL NO. I, MERRICK COUNTY 

This schoolhouse was erected in 1885 at a cost of about $1,200. 
It is located at Lockwood station on the Union Pacific railroad, in 
the southeastern corner of Merrick county. Its outward appearance 
is much the same as other schoolhouses in the eastern portion of the 
state. There are about thirty-five pupils enrolled, and the teacher, 
Mr. Edw. D. Patterson, is now serving his eighth year in that 
district. As may be seen in the illustration, it contains single desks, 
slate blackboard, a liberal supply of maps and charts, a dictionary, 
library, museum, etc. There are, however, no cloak rooms, and no 
system of heating and ventilating other than by the stove and win- 
dows. The room is lighted from the left, right and rear. 

DISTRICT SCHOOL NO. I9, FRONTIER COUNTY 

This curiosity in the shape of a school building was erected about 
1892 at a cost of $15. It is not a representative schoolhouse and 
never was. It was replaced in the summer of 1501 by a good frame 
schoolhouse. It contained home-made furniture, a small wooden 
blackboard, no apparatus, a stove and a system of ventilation through 
chinks in the wall. There was a door in one side and a window in 
each of the three other sides. Nearly all the school districts in 
Frontier county have good frame buildings, old-fashioned perha])s, 
but commodious enough and well furnished. There is only one 
log schoolhouse in existence in that county at present, and it is 
well built and properly furnished. 

THE LONG SCHOOL, OMAHA 

This building and the other Omaha buildings illustrated in this 
volume were all designed by Mr. John Latenser. The Long school 
cost nearly $25,000. It contains eight school rooms, an office and 
a supply room. There are also play rooms in the basement. All 
grades below the high school, including the kindergarten, are rep- 
resented. The furniture, blackboard and interior finish are all of 
the best. It is heated with a furnace, and the gravity system of 
ventilation is in use. There are both cloak rooms and toilet rooms 




BEATRICE SOUTH WARD SCHOOL 




BEATRICE EAST WARD SCHOOL 




RED CLOUD HIGH vSCHOOL 







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MADISON HIGH SCHOOL 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA I67 

in the building. All schoolrooms in buildings designed by Mr. 
Latenser are lighted from the left of the pupils by four, five or six 
windows, with perhaps two to the rear. 

FRANKLIN PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This building was erected a little more than a year ago at a 
cost of $8,000. It contains seven schoolrooms, two recitation rooms 
and a library, and it houses all the grades from the first to the tenth 
inclusive. The desks are patent ones, partly single and partly 
double. Green hyloplate blackboards are in use. It was built 
for a system of heating by means of hot air, but stoves are still 
being used. There is no system of ventilation, but it contains cloak 
rooms. Some of the rooms are lighted from the left and rear, 
some from the right and rear. It contains broad halls and stair- 
ways, with three exits. The interior arrangement is quite 
convenient. 

CALHOUN PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This is a model four-room frame school building erected one 
year ago at a cost of about $6,000. Besides the four schoolrooms 
it contains an office. It is the only school building in Calhoun and 
accommodates the ten grades there. One room has been seated 
with new single seats, v/hile in the others the double seats from the 
old building are in use. The plaster blackboards are still in use, 
but at any time in the future these may be covered with natural 
slate. The building is properly heated and ventilated by the hot 
air system. All schoolrooms are lighted from the left and rear. 
A complete description of the floor plans of the building is given 
elsewhere under Model Plans for Village Schools. 

THREE NORTH PLATTE HIGH SCHOOLS 

These illustrations show the evolution of the high school in one 
of the most enterprising cities in the western portion of the state, 
North Platte, on the Union Pacific railroad. We have here the first 
log schoolhouse erected in the town in 1868, the old-fashioned 
brick schoolhouse that took its place in 1873, and the modern high 
school building erected two years ago at a cost of $30,000. This 
latter contains an assembly room, eight schoolrooms, four class 
rooms, two office rooms and a library. There are also cloak and 



l68 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

toilet rooms. All grades from the sixth to the twelfth inclusive 
are represented in this building. Excellent new single desks, slate 
blackboard and all apparatus required for efficient school work are 
supplied. The building is properly heated by steam and ventilated 
with air flues from each room. The rooms are also properly 
lighted. 

SUPERIOR SCHOOL BUILDINGS 

The North school in Superior was erected in 1890 at a cost of 
$12,000. It contains four rooms with grades below the eighth only. 
It is seated with single desks, furnished with plaster blackboard 
and heated with steam. It is ventilated, but the windows were 
arranged with reference to their appearance from the outside 
rather than with reference to the convenience and the eye-sight of 
the children within. 

The Superior high school building was erected in 1885 at a cost 
of $14,500. It contains eight rooms, including rooms for the first 
three primary grades, two laboratories, assembly and recitation 
rooms and an office. Its other equipment, heating and ventilation 
are similar to the North building of Superior. 

PLEASANT PRAIRIE SCHOOL, PAWNEE COUNTY 

This schoolhouse is located in District No. 14. It was erected 
in 1893 or 1894 at a cost of about $1,700. It is built of brick, and 
contains a large schoolroom that will seat seventy-two pupils in 
single desks. There is slate blackboard around the entire room, 
and it is well provided with maps, charts and apparatus generally. 
It is located three miles east of Pawnee City in the center of a 
school district comprising nine sections of land, with a total assessed 
valuation of $53,275. There are windows on all four sides of the 
room. The front and rear walls appear in the illustrations. The 
building has a tower with a large bell in it. The district has nine 
months of school each year, and pays the teacher a good salary. 

EUSTIS PUBLIC SCHOOL 

The illustrations used are of the intermediate department at 
Eustis. There is in that little village a two-room building erected 
in 1888 at a cost of $1,400, containing the intermediate and gram- 
mar departments, and a one-room building for the primary depart- 




SUPERIOR HIGH SCHOOL 




rni TTTunTTQ wTfiM "^rTTnnT 




ASHLAND HlCAl SCHe)()L 




tf 



•"'■• tnfi i ij 



n 



PONCA PUBLIC SCHOOL 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBILi\SKA 171 

ment erected in 1899. The two buildings have a full block of 
ground. 

OMAHA GRADED SCHOOLS 

The Cass, Saunders and Pacific schools of Omaha are all much 
alike in their general plan and convenience of interior arrangement. 

The Cass school was erected in 1900 at a cost of $49,000. In 
size it is what is known as a sixteen-room building and in addition 
to the sixteen schoolrooms contains one principal's office, one teach- 
ers' room and play rooms in the basement. The eight grades below 
the high school are all represented in this building. It is furnished 
with the best single desks and natural slate blackboard. The indi- 
rect system of steam heating is used and the gravity system of 
ventilation. There is one cloak room in connection with each school- 
room and two toilet rooms in the basement, one for each sex. The 
pupils in each room are seated so as to face an unbroken front wall, 
with five or six windows at the left and two in the rear of the room. 

The Saunders school was erected in 1900 at a cost of $32,000. 
It contains ten schoolrooms, a principal's office, a teachers' room and 
play rooms in the basement. It is similar to the Cass school in the 
features mentioned above, except that a furnace is used in heating 
and a fan in ventilating. 

The Pacific school was erected in 1900 at a cost of $48,000. It 
is also a sixteen-room building and is very similar to the Cass 
school in interior arrangements and conveniences, heating, ventila- 
tion, cloak and toilet rooms. A greater difference is apparent in 
the illustrations of the Cass and Pacific schools than can be found 
when one is within the buildings. The differences are mainly in 
the "trimmings," although it cannot be honestly said that cither 
building is over-trimmed. They are architecturally beautiful in 
their simplicity. 

SIDNEY PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This building was erected in 1887 at a cost of $17,500. It is a 
substantial stone structure, although the entire roof and gable ends 
are of wood. It contains six schoolrooms, two recitation rooms, 
one study and one library room. The furniture is modem and the 
blackboard a natural slate. The building is heated with a furnace 
and ventilated. It contains cloak rooms, but the schoolrooms arc 
lighted from the left and rear or from the right and rear according 
to location. 



172 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

STERLING PUBLIC SCHOOL 

There are a number of school buildings in the state of Nebraska 
quite similar to the Sterling building in structure and appearance. 
The Syracuse building illustrated elsewhere differs but little from 
the Sterling schoolhouse. This building was erected in 1890 at a 
cost of $10,000. It contains six schoolrooms, and they have eleven 
grades in the building. The furniture is good, the blackboards are 
concrete and there is a fair supply of apparatus. The building is 
heated with a furnace and properly ventilated. There are cloak 
rooms in connection with the schoolrooms, and the schoolrooms 
are lighted from the left and rear. 

COLERIDGE PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This four-room school building was erected in 1889 at a cost of 
$5,000. There are ten grades here, good furniture, slate black- 
boards and some apparatus. The rooms are heated with stoves with 
an insufficient amount of ventilation through chimney flues. Cloak 
rooms are provided, but the light enters the schoolrooms from three 
sides. 

CEDAR BLUFFS PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This schoolhouse is in district No. 107 of Saunders county. Part 
of it was erected fifteen years ago, and part of it last year, and it 
will be seen in the illustration that no improvement was made in 
the architecture on the addition. The cost of the building was 
about $6,000. It contains six rooms, including four schoolrooms, 
one recitation or office room and one room not finished. There are 
ten grades represented here. The high school room contains single 
seats, the others double ones. In three of the rooms there is slate 
blackboard. The rooms are heated with stoves with no arrange- 
ment for ventilation. The halls are large and are used for cloak 
rooms. The rooms are lighted from three sides. The building is 
provided with a fire escape. 

ANSELMO PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This building was erected in 1889 at a cost of about $2,500. It 
is a four-room building, although only two of the rooms are now in 
use. The blackboards are of plaster. The rooms are heated with 
stoves and without a system of ventilation. The halls are used as 




WAKKFIKLD PUBLIC Si^iiuul. 




f^' I'-^Jta^j sm ax as t^^. 



I WW^^T^ , fl T 



HASTINGS HIGH SCHOOL 




LOUP CITY PUBLIC SCHOOL 











MIXDEN HIGH SCHOOL 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA I75 

cloak rooms. The building was poorly constructed so that it >yas 
necessary to expend $400 on repairs recently. It is now reported 
to be in good condition. 

DISTRICT SCHOOLS IN HALL COUNTY 

The schoolhouse in district No. 13 was erected in 1898 at a cost 
of $1,200. This building is like many another in the state, but it 
' is larger than the average. There is a cloak room or entry way 
and a large, roomy schoolroom. This room is quite attractive with 
new desks, a good heating stove, clean walls, pictures, mottoes, 
etc., all of which make the room appear very homelike. The result 
is an excellent school spirit in that district and a crowded school- 
room whenever special day exercises are held. 

The schoolhouse in district No. 74 is a duplicate of the building 
in district No. i of Hall county. The latter is quite fully described 
a number of pages further on. 

GENEVA SCHOOLS 

The Geneva ward school, a two-room building, was erected in 
1888 at a cost of $4,000. The first and second primary grades only 
are housed here. The building is a brick one with slate blackboards, 
but it is heated with stoves, ventilated by means of doors and win- 
dows, and the rooms are lighted from the right of the children. 

The interior view is of a third grade schoolroom in the high 
school building. 

The Geneva high school building, illustrated further on, was 
erected in 1883 at a cost of $7,000. It contains six schoolrooms 
and one recitation room, and all of the grades from the third to 
the eleventh. The building shown in the illustration to the rear 
of the high school building is also used for school purposes and 
contains two rooms. The high school building contains slate black- 
boards, good furniture and apparatus and is heated with stoves 
without a system of ventilation. There are no cloak rooms in 
connection with the schoolrooms. 

DISTRICT SCHOOL NO. 7 OF PERKINS COUNTY 

This schoolhouse was erected in the fall of 1900 at a cost of $204. 
The building represents three years of hard saving and planning 
on the part of the district. One year they went without school en- 



176 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

tirely, and then had to join two districts together in order to get 
$200 with which to build this schoolhouse. The blackboards are 
home-made, and the ventilation is accidental and incidental. Per- 
haps the chief characteristic of the building is the cheapness with 
which it was constructed. 

MAPLE GROVE SCHOOL, HAMILTON COUNTY 

This schoolhouse is located in district No. 14, two and one-half 
miles southwest of Aurora. It was erected in 1885 at a cost of 
$1,000. There are two cloak rooms and a vestibule besides the 
schoolroom proper. It is seated with both single and double desks 
and has slate blackboards. The building itself is twenty-two by 
thirty-six feet with a twelve-foot ceiling. There is a large base- 
ment in the building walled up with limestone and divided into two 
compartments, one for coal and the other for cobs. The stairway 
is on the inside. The school grounds include three acres, covered 
with blue grass and surrounded with three rows of trees, ash, 
maple and box-elder. The flag seen in the illustration was won at 
a county fair. There is a twenty-foot flag pole not seen in the 
illustration. 

DISTRICT SCHOOL NO. 33, LINCOLN COUNTY 

The schoolhouse in this district was erected in 1889 at a cost of 
$2,500. It contains two schoolrooms, a grammar department and 
a primary department. There are patent school desks, slate black- 
boards and $800 worth of various kinds of apparatus. The rooms 
are heated with stoves but not ventilated. There are also cloak 
rooms and a sliding partition between the two schoolrooms. The 
district lies in the valley between the North and South Platte river^ 
in the heart of the oldest irrigated section of Lincoln county. The 
yard contains two acres of land and is fenced with posts and 
piping. It contains all kinds of fruit trees with a row of Carolina 
poplars around the outer edge. The district pays as high as $50 
a month to its teachers. 

ABIE PUBLIC SCHOOLS 

Abie is noted for the honor of always appearing first in the 
alphabetical list of the graded schools of the state. The larger 
building in the illustration was erected in 1887 at a cost of $1,000 
and the smaller one in 1896 at a cost of $500. The rooms are 








■Jl\ 

r4 % 








AUBURN HIGH SCHOOU 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA I79 

seated with double desks and heated with stoves. There is no sys- 
tem of ventilation. The light enters from three sides. The black- 
boards are made of slated paper. The buildings are located on a 
high hill overlooking the village. 

BURWELL PUBLIC SCHOOL 

The schoolhouse was erected in 1898 at a cost of about $1,800. It 
contains four schoolrooms, each about twenty by thirty-two feet, 
entirely too narrow. Ten grades are represented in the building. 
The rooms are furnished with double desks and slate blackboards. 
The building is heated with a furnace, but ventilated by means of 
the windows. The light enters from the left and rear of the 
pupils on one side of the building, from the right and rear on the 
other side. Burwell expects to erect a new building soon. 

SCRIBNER PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This is an excellent six-room brick school building that cost about 
$12,000 with site. There is a seventh room for recitation pur- 
poses. It is furnished with single desks, slate blackboard and 
excellent apparatus. The rooms are heated with steam with venti- 
lating flues in the chimneys. There are no cloak rooms or toilet 
rooms in the building. The children hang their wraps in the hall- 
ways. The pupils face a middle wall, receiving the main light from 
the rear. 

The interior views represent the high school with a beginning 
Latin class at the blackboard under the instruction of Prin. Chas. 
Arnot, now superintendent of Dodge county ; another high school 
class with Miss Eliza Scherzer as teacher; the intermediate de- 
partment with Miss Jessie R. Inches, teacher; and a grammar de- 
partment with Miss Nellie G. Colder, teacher. As may be seen by 
the clocks in the illustrations, these views were taken shortly after 
roll call in the afternoon, and show the pupils at their regular 
school work in its every-day routine. 

KEARNEY PUBLIC SCHOOLS 

The Longfellow school in Kearney was erected in 1892 at a cost 
of $40,000. This is the high school building of Kearney and con- 
tains thirteen rooms, including assembly room, recitation rooms, 
laboratories, offices, library and two first primary schoolrooms. It 



l80 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

is modem in construction, with single desks, recitation benches 
with arms, slate blackboards throughout and a full equipment of 
apparatus for teaching all the sciences. The Smead system of 
heating and ventilating is used. There are separate cloak rooms 
for the boys and girls and toilet rooms in the basement. The 
lighting is principally from the left, but with high windows in the 
rear. The halls are wide, with easy stairways. The building is 
furnished with city water in the halls and laboratories, and lighted 
with gas and electricity. The Longfellow and Whittier schools are 
placed in a beautiful park consisting of more than six acres in the 
heart of the city. This park is seeded with blue grass and clover, 
and well supplied with shade trees. 

The Alcott and Hawthorne schools, twin buildings, were erected 
in 1892 at a cost of $20,000 for the two. Each contains four school- 
rooms and houses the first five grades. The rooms are furnished 
with single desks and provided with slate blackboards. The Smead 
system of heating and ventilating is in use, and cloak and toilet 
rooms are provided. In other particulars these two buildings re- 
semble the Longfellow school. 

The Whittier school was erected in 1881 at a cost of $20,000. 
It contains seven schoolrooms and all grades from the second to 
the eighth inclusive. It is heated with steam, and the ventilators 
are in the walls. In interior arrangement it compares quite fav- 
orably with the more modern buildings of Kearney. 

The Kenwood school was erected in 1888 at a cost of $10,000. It 
is a four-room building for the first seven grades. It is heated with 
hot air, and in other particulars resembles^^the other buildings of 
Kearney already described. 

ORD HIGH SCHOOL 

This building was erected in 1892 at a cost of $13,500. It con- 
tains five graded schoolrooms, one high school assembly room, two 
recitation rooms, a laboratory and an office. All grades are repre- 
sented in the building except the first and second. It is seated 
with both single and double desks, and provided with slate black- 
boards. It is heated with hot air and ventilated with the Fuller & 
Warren system. The cloak rooms are the wide halls. The light- 
ing is good. 



m. 



,rf* 




DAVID CITY HIGH vSCHOOL 




PETERSIU'RC; ITULIC SCIIOOI, 




FALLS CITY HIGH SCHOOL 




GORDON PUBLIC SCHOOL 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 183 

FREMONT HIGH SCHOOL 

This building was erected twelve or thirteen years ago at a cost 
of $22,000. It contains one assembly room, six class rooms and 
two offices. It is used exclusively for high school purposes. The 
Smead system of heating and ventilating is in use. The furniture 
is good, the blackboards are of slate, and there are cloak and toilet 
rooms in the building. When erected it was supposed it would be 
ample in size for many years to come, but Fremont has already 
outgrown it. 

HARVARD HIGH SCHOOL 

The Harvard high school is the best schoolhouse in Clay county. 
It was erected in 1894 at a cost of $12,000. It contains eight school- 
rooms, one laboratory and one office, and houses eleven grades. 
The blackboards are of the best slate, the desks nearly all single 
and the apparatus quite modern. The Smead system of heating 
and ventilating is in use, and there are cloak and toilet rooms. The - 
lighting is excellent, mainly from the left and rear of the pupils. 
This is said to be one of the best equipped and best kept school 
buildings in the state. 

BEATRICE HIGH SCHOOL 

The Central school at Beatrice includes the high school, although 
it also makes provision for some of the grammar grades. It was 
erected in 1884 at a cost of $30,000. There are in it ten school- 
rooms, three recitation rooms and two laboratories. It is furnished 
with single seats and provided with slate blackboards. It is heated 
by sueam. All necessary apparatus and supplies for high school 
purposes and grade work are provided. 

CUMING CITY SCHOOL GROUNDS 

We wish to direct particular attention to these school grounds, 
located about three miles northwest of Blair in Washington county. 
The grounds are 260 feet in width and 270 feet in depth, and when 
the photograph from which our half-tone was reproduced was taken 
in the early fall, the trees almost entirely obscured tlie school- 
house. 



184 SCnCX)L BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

DISTRICT SCHOOL NO. 9, DODGE COUNTY 

This is a very common type of school building in the eastern part 
of Nebraska. It was erected in 1876 at a cost of less than $1,000. 
There is an entry way or vestibule used as a cloak room, and the 
room is lighted from both sides, the east and the west. It is seated 
with single desks and supplied with slate blackboard, maps, charts 
and a small library. Notice the tall trees about the building used as 
a wind-break, but there is no attempt in the way of shrubbery to 
improve the appearance of the grounds and conceal the outhouses. 

AUBURN WARD SCHOOLS 

The little city of Auburn, the county seat of Nemaha county, in 
southeastern Nebraska, has excellent, solid and substantial school 
buildings. 

The Athens school was erected in 1896 at a cost of $7,000. It is 
a six-room building for the grades below the high school. Nearly 
all desks are single ones, the blackboards are made of liquid slating 
on plaster and charts and maps are provided. The Smead system 
of heating and ventilation is used. There are cloak rooms, but no 
interior toilet rooms. The rooms are lighted mainly from the left 
and rear of the pupils, and the interior of the building in general is 
quite neat and convenient in arrangement. 

The Antioch school is an eight-room building erected at the same 
time as the Athens school and cost perhaps $1,000 more. It is quite 
similar in design, arrangement and furnishing to the Athens school. 

CRETE HIGH SCHOOL 

This building was erected in 1888 at a cost of $25,000. It con- 
tains one high school assembly room, four recitation rooms, six 
graded schoolrooms, two offices and three store rooms. All grades 
above the second are represented here. The building is furnished 
with single desks, slate blackboard four feet wide in all the rooms 
except the third and fourth grades, where it is narrower, and the 
usual amount of high school apparatus, maps and globes. It is 
heated with steam and well ventilated. The building has easy 
stairways and good cloak rooms. 




ST. EDWARD PUBLIC SCHOOL 




HARTINGTON PUBLIC SCHOOL 




ELGIN PUBLIC SCHOOL 




ALLIANCE PUBLIC SCHOOL 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 187 

BEATRICE WARD SCHOOLS 

The Fairview school of Beatrice was erected in 189 1 at a cost of 
$7,500. It is a four-room- building for the first seven grades. It 
is furnished with single desks, slate blackboard, maps, charts, globes, 
etc., and the Smead system of heating and ventilating is in use, 
but the interior closets have been removed. There are cloak rooms, 
and the schoolrooms generally are lighted from the left and rear. 

The South school was erected in 1886 at a cost of $8,000. It con- 
tains six rooms for the first seven grades, and is furnished with 
maps, charts, globes, etc., but the blackboards are of cloth. In other 
respects it is similar to the Fairview school. 

. The East school was erected in 1888 at a cost of $10,000. It con- 
tains seven rooms for all the grades below the high school except 
the seventh. In all essential particulars it resembles the South 
school. 

RED CLOUD HIGH SCHOOL 

The Red Cloud high school was erected in 1882 at a cost of $10,- 
000. It contains an assembly room, recitation room, a library and 
an office and three graded schoolrooms. All grades above the sec- 
ond are represented in the building. The blackboards are of plaster 
or of cloth, and the building is heated with stoves. There are chim- 
ney flues for the exit of foul air. Some high school apparatus is 
provided, but the building is without cloak rooms or toilet rooms. 

MADISON HIGH SCHOOL 

This building was erected two years ago at a cost of $15,000, in- 
cluding the steam heating plant. It contains a high school assembly 
room, recitation room, laboratory, li1)rary, store room and six grade 
rooms. It is furnished with single desks, slate blackboard, some 
laboratory apparatus and a liberal supply of organs, pictures, etc. 
The building is properly lighted and ventilated. 

ASHLAND HIGH SCHOOL 

The original part of this l)ui!ding was erected in 1871 and an ad- 
dition thereto in 1887 at a total cost of $16,000. It is an clcvcn- 
room building and contains all grades. There are both singk^ and 
double desks and slate blackboard. It is heated with steam and 
provided with outlets for foul air near the ceiling. There are cloak 



loo SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

rooms but no toilet rooms in the building. The rooms are lighted 
mainly from the left and rear. 

PONCA PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This excellent school building in northeastern Nebraska was 
erected three years ago at a cost of about $18,000. It contains ten 
schoolrooms, an office and a library, and has also two large hall- 
ways. All grades are here represented. The desks are modern 
single ones, though some double desks are still in use, and the black- 
board is of plaster composition. It is heated with steam and venti- 
lated by means of a fan in the basement. It contains both cloak and 
toilet rooms. The lighting is from the left of the pupils. In its 
system of heating, ventilation and lighting, its broad stairways and 
large, airy, well-lighted hallways, this building compares favorably 
with any in the state. 

COLUMBUS HIGH SCHOOL 

The new Columbus high school was erected nearly four years ago 
at a cost of $27,000. It contains a high school assembly room, 
three recitation rooms, three laboratories, an office and a library 
and three graded schoolrooms. The desks are single, and those in 
the high school are adjustable with revolving seats. The black- 
board is of slate and the apparatus all quite modern. The system of 
heating and ventilating is similar to the Smead system. The hall- 
ways are divided for cloak rooms and there are toilet rooms in the 
basement. The rooms are in the main lighted from the left or left 
and rear. The building contains ample hall space, excellent arrange- 
ment, abundant light, high ceilings and tinted walls. 

WAKEFIELD HIGH SCHOOL 

This building was erected three years ago at a cost of $15,000. 
It is of pressed brick and contains six schoolrooms, one laboratory 
and one assembly room, and houses all of the grades from the first 
through the eleventh. The blackboards are of slate and the furni- 
ture and apparatus fairly good. The building is heated with steam 
and ventilated. There are cloak rooms, but no interior toilet rooms. 
The schoolrooms are lighted from the left and rear. The building 
has wide halls, easy stairways and conveniences of interior 
arrangement. 



A 




DISTRICT SCHOOL No. 38, SARPY COUNTY 
The last log schoolhouse in eastern Nebraska, removed in 1901 




GRAND ISLAND HIGH SCHOOL 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA IQI 

HASTINGS HIGH SCHOOL 

This building was erected in 1889 at a cost of $20,000. It con- 
tains ten rooms and accommodates all the grades from the first 
through the twelfth. It is furnished with single desks, recitation 
chairs, several kinds of blackboard and the ordinary amount of ap- 
paratus for instruction in the sciences. The building is heated with 
steam and provided with cloak and toilet rooms, but there is no 
complete system of ventilation. The lighting is mainly from the 
left and rear. 

LOUP CITY PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This building was erected in 1899 ^^ ^ ^o^t of $10,000. It con- 
tains six schoolrooms and one recitation room for the accommoda- 
tion of the ten grades. The furniture is mostly of the old-fashioned 
folding-desk variety, the blackboards are of hard finish plaster, and 
the apparatus includes wall maps, charts, etc. The building is 
heated with steam and ventilated. There are open cloak rooms in 
the hallways, but there are no toilet rooms in the building. One- 
half of the rooms are lighted from the left and rear, the other half 
from the right and rear of the pupils. 

MINDEN HIGH SCHOOL 

This building was erected three years ago. It contains an assem^ 
bly room, fotir recitation rooms, two laboratories and three graded 
schoolrooms, the latter for the accommodation of the fourth, fifth 
and sixth grades. It contains good furniture and apparatus and 
slate blackboard, and the building is heated with steam, but is not 
ventilated. There are cloak rooms but no toilet rooms in the build- 
ing. The rooms generally are lighted from the left and rear. 

GRANT SCHOOL, NORFOLK 

The main part of this building was erected in 1886 and an annex 
in 1898 at a total cost of $13,000. There are six schoolrooms and 
one office, the former for the accommodation of the primary and the 
fifth grades. There are both single and double desks in the building, 
natural slate and plaster composition blackboards and some ap- 
paratus. The building is heated with hot air and ventilated. There 
are cloak rooms in the building but no toilet rooms. In general, 
the rooms are lighted from the left and rear. The rooms are all 
large and well lighted, but in the older portion they arc poorly 
ventilated and not very well heated. 



192 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

NORFOLK HIGH SCHOOL 

This building was erected in 1890 at a cost of $29,000. It con- 
tains an assembly room, three laboratory and recitation rooms, three 
office and library rooms and six schoolrooms. The desks are single, 
the blackboards of plaster composition and the apparatus and equip- 
ment very good. The building is heated with hot air by the Smead 
system and ventilated. It contains both cloak and toilet rooms. 
The schoolrooms are lighted chiefly from the left and rear. The 
building contains commodious hallways, stairways, good ventilation, 
but not the best of heating. The general arrangements are quite 
convenient. 

AUBURN HIGH SCHOOL 

This building was erected in 1886 at a cost of $8,000. It is used 
exclusively for the high school grades and contains two assembly 
rooms, a class room, laboratory, office and book room. It is pro- 
vided with single seats, liquid slating blackboards, maps and charts 
and apparatus for physics and chemistry. The Smead system of 
hot air is used for heating with ventilation. There are cloak rooms 
but no toilet rooms in the building. The rooms are lighted mainly 
from the left and rear. It is a neat and convenient building in all 
respects. 

ST. EDWARD PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This building was erected in 1895 at a cost of $5,600'. It con- 
tains four good schoolrooms for the accommodation of all the 
grades. The desks are mainly the old folding ones, though single, 
the blackboards are of slate and the apparatus insufficient. The 
building is heated with stoves, and ventilated by means of windows, 
transoms and doors. There are cloak rooms but no interior toilet 
rooms. All the rooms are lighted from the left and rear. 

HARTINGTON PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This building was erected in 1896 at a cost of $12,000. It con- 
tains one laboratory and seven schoolrooms for the accommoda- 
tion of all the grades from the first through the twelfth. The 
blackboards are of slate, and the building is heated with steam and 
ventilated. There are cloak rooms but no interior toilet rooms. 
The rooms are lighted from the left and rear. 



/ 



^/ 





DISTRICT SCHOOL No. 54, I'KRKINS COUNTY 
Front View 




DISTRICT SCHOOL No. :A, I'KRKINS COI'NTV 
Side \'ie\v 




vSUD vSCHUOLHOlSE, DUNDY COUNTY 




DISTRICT SCHOOL No. 83, CHERP.Y COUNTY 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA I95 

ELGIN PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This building was erected in 1891 at a cost of $3,500. It is not 
in g-ood repair and is difficult to heat and ventilate, but Elgin ex- 
pects to erect a new school building soon. 

ALLIANCE HIGH SCHOOL 

The older part of this building was erected in 1889 and an addi- 
tion in 1899 ^t a total cost of $15,000. It contains nineteen rooms 
for the accommodation of all the grades from the first through the 
twelfth, including schoolrooms, recitation rooms, offices, labora- 
tories, library, boiler room and lunch room. Natural slate and 
hyloplate blackboards are in use. The building is heated with 
steam and ventilated. There are cloak rooms, but the toilet rooms 
are outside. 

LOG SCHOOLHOUSE IN DISTRICT NO. 38, SARPY COUNTY 

This schoolhouse was demolished last year and its logs have been 
used during the past winter to heat the new frame building that has 
taken its place. This was probably the last log schoolhouse in the 
eastern part of Nebraska. It stood in a beautiful grove on Belle- 
vue Island, only twelve miles from the business center of Omaha. 
The building was erected about thirty years ago and was used during 
the last sixteen years of its existence as a schoolhouse. It measured 
only sixteen by eighteen feet, with a six-foot ceiling. It contained 
twenty double desks and was lighted by means of three windows. 
An old-fashioned wood-burning stove, red with rust, furnished the 
heat, and the chinks between the logs where the plaster had fallen 
off provided plenty of ventilation. It has long been a question 
whether part of the land comprising school district No. 38 of Sarpy 
county was in Iowa or Nebraska, and on account of this uncertainty 
it was difficult to vote bonds for a new schoolhouse, but finally $800 
was raised in this way, and the same has been used in the con- 
struction of the new frame building. 

GRAND ISLAND HIGH SCHOOL 

The original part of this building, known as the Dodge building, 

was erected in 1878 at a cost of $30,000; an addition in 1885 cost 
$9,000, and another addition in 1889, $11,000. The complete build- 



196 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

ing contains twenty-one rooms, including all necessary schoolrooms 
and recitation rooms for the accommodation of all grades from the 
first through the twelfth. It contains both kinds of desks and slate 
blackboards. The apparatus is of the best, and there is a very 
complete reference library for the benefit of the high school. The 
building is properly heated with steam, but is not ventilated. There 
are cloak rooms in the building, but no toilet rooms. The school- 
rooms are lighted mainly from the left and rear. 

DISTRICT SCHOOL NO. 54, PERKINS COUNTY 

This old sod schoolhouse which the author had the pleasure of 
examining last summer was erected about the year 1888 at a cost 
approximately of $100. It contains two rooms, only one of which 
is habitable. There are in the building good double desks, a recita- 
tion bench, slate blackboards, and fully $200 worth of apparatus, 
including maps, charts and arithmetical blocks in abundance. There 
is one stove, with accidental and incidental ventilation, assisted by 
the cattle. The building does not belong to the district, but was 
borrowed by it for school purposes with the understanding that the 
district was to keep it in repair for the use of it without rent. A 
new schoolhouse has been or soon will be erected in the district. 
The side view shows a shed where the teacher and some of the 
pupils stable their horses during the school day. 

SOD SCHOOLHOUSE, DUNDY COUNTY 

This is the picture of a sod schoolhouse formerly used in district 
No. 9 of Dundy county, but it was replaced about three years ago 
by a nice frame building. The photograph was taken seven or 
eight years ago. The building was erected in 1888 at a cost of 
about $125. The furniture It contained was all home-made except 
the teacher's chair. It was furnished with a bit of slate blackboard 
which cost forty cents per square foot. The pupils face the door, 
with two windows on each side and no opening in the rear. The 
building was, naturally enough, warm in the winter time and cool 
in the summer. It was almost impossible to hear any noise from 
the outside. It was plastered with native lime (soft magnesia rock) 
which pulverizes easily after being soaked in water a few days. No 
studding or lath were used, as the plaster sticks readily to the sod 




DISTRICT SCHOOL No. 30, HITCHCOCK COUNTY 




DISTRICT SCHOOL No. Ti, FRONTIER COUNTY 




DISTRICT SCHOOL No. 11, KEITH COUNTY 




THE LOOKOUT SCHOOL, DISTRICT No. 26, LOUP COUNTY 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA I99 

walls. The greater portion of the plastering was done during inter- 
missions by the pupils, who were thus receiving their first lessons in 
clay modeling. 

DISTRICT SCHOOL NO. 83, CHERRY COUNTY 

This sod schoolhouse was erected in the fall of 1901 at a cost to 
the district of $37.85, as the work and a part of the material were 
contributed by the patrons. The actual cost of such a building 
would be about $100. The furniture it contains is entirely home- 
made, the blackboards are painted boards, there is no apparatus, 
and the schoolhouse is heated with a stove and "native fuel." The 
district has never had to exceed six months of school during a 
year, and last year, on account- of their inability to secure a teacl.w.^ 
in time, they were unable to have more than three months. 

DISTRICT SCHOOL NO. 30, HITCHCOCK COUNTY 

This school district has been discontinued, and the building is 
now used as a church and is known as "The Old Sod Church." 

DISTRICT SCHOOL NO. 73, FRONTIER COUNTY 

This building was erected about twelve years ago at a cost of 
$100. It was replaced last year by a good frame schoolhouse. It 
was a long, low building, devoid of beauty, though not uncomfort- 
able, and is a type of many of the schoolhouses that existed in west- 
ern Nebraska several years ago, but it is not characteristic of the 
more modern schoolhouses now in that part of the state. It con- 
tained patent furniture, the blackboards were of matched lumber 
painted black, and there were windows on both sides opposite each 
other. The children in the illustration are typical young Nebras- 
kans that are determined to maintain for their state the lowest per- 
centage of illiteracy in the Union, whether in order to do so they 
must acquire their education in a sod house, a log house or a pressed 
brick building, 

DISTRICT SCHOOL NO. 44, KEITH COUNTY 

This view shows the south side of a sod schoolhouse with shingled 
roof. Like most of the sod houses, the ceiling is low. The room 
contains patent desks and about two square yards of slate black- 



2O0 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

board. There is an old reading chart and a small dictionary in the 
school. There are two windows on each side, the north and the 
south, and a door in the east. The illustration shows some broken 
window glass. 

LOOKOUT SCHOOL, LOUP COUNTY 

This sod house is located in district No. 26, in a county without 
a mile of railroad. A wooden blackboard is exhibited to the left 
of the children. The low roof and lower door may be seen in the 
illustration, and the bright looking children are typical of the 
prairies and ranges of central and western Nebraska. 

DISTRICT SCHOOL NO. I, HALL COUNTY 

This school district is almost unique in Nebraska in that in addi- 
tion to a fine brick schoolhouse with porches and architectural orna- 
mentation (see illustration) it provides a residence and garden for 
the use of the teacher. 

The first school ever established in Hall county was a private 
school in 1864, with only icur children attending: Frederick Stolley, 
Wilhelm Stelk, Christian Gottsche and Lina Schoel. The teacher, 
Theodore Nagel, received his pay in work performed by the parents 
of the children on the teacher's farm while he was teaching the 
children. Christian Gottsche, when sixteen years old, was killed 
by the Indians while out hunting on the Loup river. 

An attempt at organizing a school district under the laws of the 
state was first made in the year 1868. The district embraced all 
the territory of the present school districts Nos. i and 74, and con- 
siderable of the Grand Island school district, No. 2. All measures 
taken at that time were irregular and bungling and subsequently 
proved to he illegal, and much contention prevailed for several 
years on account of the high-handed and unlawful proceedings of 
those who claimed to be in authority. The party acting for the 
time being as director was also the teacher of the district school, 
and reports on one of the sheets of his record that, in the capacity 
of director, he inspected his own school three times that year. Taxes 
for school purposes were levied in the following manner, as for 
example : > 

I. Every voter in the school district shall pay $2.00 into the 
school fund. 



I 




DISTRICT SCHOOL No. 1, HALL COUNTY 




CACHER'S RESIDENCE, PROPERTY OI- DISTRICT No. 1, II.\LL COUNTY 




DISTRICT SCHOOL No. 3, FILLMORE COUNTY 
This buildins; was destroyed to make room for — 




The New School Building in 
DISTRICT No. 3, FILLMORE COUNTY 




BRADY PUBLIC vSCHOOL AT FOUR O CLOCK 




GENEVA HIGH SCHOOL 




PRAIRIE OUEEX SCHOOL, DISTRICT No. 33, SARPY COUNTY 



'Si25Zf?SS 




PAPILLIOX PUBLIC SCHOOL 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA • 21 5 

OLD SOD SCHOOLHOUSE IN SOUTHWESTERN NEBRASKA 

The photograph from which this illustration is made was taken 
several years ago. The building is located north of McCook, and 
was probably intended for other than school purposes. The photo- 
graph was presented to Mrs. Nettleton while she was county 
superintendent there, and is highly prized. Notice the bright faces 
and tidy appearance of the children, and also the weeds and sun- 
flower stalks that have grown on the sod roof of the schoolhouse. 

DISTRICT SCHOOL NO. l6, KEITH COUNTY 

This old sod schoolhouse was constructed in the fall of 1886, and 
torn down some time ago. It contained patent desks and slate 
blackboards, and was well supplied with modern apparatus.' It was 
lighted by means of two windows in each side. 

RURAL DISTRICT SCHOOL, LINCOLN COUNTY 

This old stone schoolhouse was destroyed several years ago on 
account of a change of site, and a frame building was constructed 
on the new schoolhouse site, but the illustration will serve to show 
one of the types of schoolhouses in Nebraska, though there are few 
of this class. The material of the building is native limestone, 
taken from the hills south of North Platte. As the rocks are soft, 
to save time and trouble in cutting them the usual method is to 
make a concrete, and after the wall is built, plaster it on the outside 
and mark off squares in imitation of marble or granite blocks. 

DISTRICT SCHOOL NO. 4I, DAWES COUNTY 

This log schoolhouse was constructed in 1888 at a cost of $50. 
It is made of hewn logs with sod roof. There are two windows in 
each side. The desks are home-made, the blackboards are painted 
boards and the building also contains one set of charts and a wood 
stove. 

A BALED STRAW SCHOOLHOUSE 

Some five or six years ago in district No. 5 of Scott's Rluff 
county there was erected a temple of learning, the walls of which 
were of baled straw, the floor was the primitive mother earth and 
the roof above presented a face of earth to the heavens. This roof 
was made of poles laid across from side to side and covered with 
sod. The building was sixteen feet long, twelve feet wide, and 



2l6 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

seven feet liigh. There was a window in each side and a door in 
one end. The bales of straw were laid in mud instead of mortar, and 
with some half bales the joints were broken the same way that 
bricks are laid. The school board at that time consisted of Mr. 
James Baxter, Air. W. S. Fleming and Mrs. Fulton, all of Mina- 
tare. The gentlemen performed most of the labor of construction. 
The building was used but two years as a schoolhouse. The state 
superintendent has endeavored to obtain a photograph of the build- 
ing but he cannot find that one was ever taken. Like the temple of 
ancient Jerusalem, of that schoolhouse there is not left one stone 
(or bale of straw) upon another, as the cattle were allowed to 
range around it. A frame schoolhouse now occupies the site. We 
are indebted to Mr. James Baxter of Minatare and to Mr. A. E. 
Whiteis of Gering for much of this information. 




GRKTNA ]'U11I.IC vSCIlooI 




LONG I'lM'. I'UIUJC vSClIUOL 







I\:ODEL ONE-ROOM SCHOOL 
American School Board Join nal, June, 190] 





ULj t^: ^'^sfflx^- 



MIDDLESEX, N. Y., PUBLIC SCHOOL 
American School Board Journal, October, 1901 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 2ig 



Extracts from an Address 

By Dr. W. T. Harris, U. S. Commissioner of Education, Wash- 
ington, D. C, ON "The Danger of Using Biological Anal- 
ogies IN Reasoning on Educational Subjects," delivered at 
the annual meeting of the Department of Superintend- 
ence OF the N. E. a., at Chicago, February 26, 1902. 

The schoolhouse, at first, was only a slight modification on the 
dwelling-house. There was light and ventilation sufficient for two, 
three or four persons in the room. The dark parts of the room 
were light enough for many purposes of housework, and if one 
wished to read or to sew or perform the work of cleansmg or 
.separating such articles of food as had been ground and needed 
feifting, or as were composed of small grains or kernels and needed 
picking over, a seat near the window secured the requisite light. 

But the school needed a room lighted in all parts, as nearly 
equal as possible and with a constant supply of fresh air, heated 
properly. It was gradually discovered that the room of the dwell- 
ing-house was poorly adapted for school purposes. Some pupils 
got too little light and became near-sighted by holding their books 
too close to their eyes ; some came to have weak eyes by having too 
much light. For the glare of a page on which the sunlight falls 
is sufficient to produce partial blindness. Even pure skylight, 
without the direct rays of the sun, will tend to do this. Many have 
been the so-called improvements which in correcting the evil of 
insufficient light ignored entirely the great injury done to those 
pupils who sat in the full glare of the sun or of the clear sky, and 
for hours each day tried their eyes on perceiving letters and figures 
in small print. I need not speak here of the various attempts to 
light the room from the front of the pupil, forcing him to strain 
his eyes in order to make out the words of the page when seen in 
the direction of the source of light; the experiment of lighting 
from two sides, the left and the right sides with its attendant im- 
possibility of getting the light upon the book from either side with- 
out at the same time facing the light of the other side. The light 
was tried from the right side alone, and the pupil had to have the 
shadow of his hand on the place where he was writing. Light from 



220 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

the left and rear came at last to be adopted with much unanimity 
by educational experts in this country in 1876. But the tendency 
to make large buildings has since that time permitted and encour- 
aged the construction of schoolhouses with one-half of the rooms 
lighted from one side only ; this, too, without due consideration of 
the relation between the height of the tops of the windows and 
the width of the room. The consequence of this is that most of our 
cities have schoolrooms in which there is a row of desks where 
pupils sit in a twilight and acquire the habit of holding their books 
too near the eyes ; and another row of desks where the pupils have 
the glare of light that I have described, and the effort of nature to 
adjust the retina to the overplus of light dims the power of vision 
below the normal standard. 

In the schoolroom of a building altered over from a dwelling- 
house, there is also another attendant evil. The pupils in a row of 
seats placed directly under the windows are exposed, in cold 
weather, to chilling currents of air which are constantly flowing 
down the sides of the wall and especially down the window surface. 
Children not of robust constitution often lay the foundation of much 
bodily disease in this way. Improper lighting, by reason of the 
sympathy of the eyes with the stomach, produces in pupils of deli- 
cate constitution a tendency to nervous dyspepsia. Indeed, the 
errors in lighting and in avoiding draughts of cold air seem to me 
so serious that I cannot listen patiently to those who praise the 
countless devices which are invented for one and another trifling 
advantage in the hygiene of the schoolroom. For it were better 
that they had not been discovered than to distract, as they do, the 
attention from the far weightier matters of light and temperature 
and ventilation. 

One idea crowds out another in some cases, although in other 
cases one idea leads to or brings in another. The general idea 
suggests its applications. But the particular idea having small 
scope may get in the way of more fruitful ideas. We have to meas- 
ure ideas as to their relative value and decide for ourselves which 
may properly give way to the other. For example, take the unhy- 
gienic school as it existed and now exists in the countries that are 
backward in this matter of school architecture, and we must admit 
that the great purposes of the school were secured and are secured 
in the log schoolhouses, in the dark, ill-ventilated tenement building 




HUMBOLDT PUBLIC SCHOOL 







um 



f. 



it 




CRAWFORD PUm.IC SCHOOI, 




x^ .^^.ivPING WATER PUBLIC SCHOOL 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 203 

2. On every forty acres of land claimed or owned by any settler, 
he shall pay $1.50 into the school fund. 

3. On every $100 assessed valuation of personal property, one- 
fourth per cent shall be paid. 

A schoolhouse of the value of $250 (14X 18 feet) was built, but 
the teacher received very little cash and had to take school orders 
for his pay and sell them at a discount. Matters changed some- 
what in the summer of 1870, when a second schoolhouse was built 
and the district was divided into two sub-districts, "west" and 
"east." It was not, however, until April, 1872, when Wm. Stolley 
was elected director of district No. i, that radical changes took 
place. At that time two teachers were employed for nine months 
each at $40 per month. Gradually matters improved, and in the 
years 1884, 1885 and 1886 school district taxes were levied for 
the purpose of building two substantial brick schoolhouses, one 
for each sub-district. This plan was carried out, and on September 
I, 1886, both brick schoolhouses, as they are now in evidence, were 
accepted by the school board at a cost of $4,515.07. Soon after 
this, school district No. i was divided into two districts : the west 
end sub-district to be known as district No. i, and the east end 
sub-district as district No. 74 (see illustration of this schoolhouse). 

At the annual school meeting in 1893, the sum of $1,200 was 
voted for the building of a teacher's residence and suitable out- 
buildings, and a tax of ten mills was levied for that purpose. In 
August, 1893, an additional acre of land adjoining the schoolhouse 
grounds on the east was bought for the location of the teacher's 
"home," and although much opposed by some tax payers, on the 
15th day of May, 1894, the contract for the construction of the 
teacher's residence was let for the sum of $1,000 in gold. The 
house was completed and turned over to the district on July 19, 
1894. The teacher's house is 22x28 feet and 14 feet in height, 
with an addition to the west of 12 x 16 feet and 10 feet high. The 
house has double windows for winter and window screens for 
summer. 

Up to the year 1880 inclusive the district paid the teacher $40 per 
month; in 1881 they paid $45 per month (9 months) ; in 1882, $50 
per month (9 months) ; in 1883, $55 per month (9 months) ; and 
for the years 1884 to 1901 inclusive, the district paid $60 per month 
(9 months), and of late years provided the free use of the teach- 



204 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASICA 

er's residence, out-buildings, and one-half acre of ground for a 
garden. The district also voted funds for the additional purchase 
of suitable pasture land for the keeping of a milch cow and family- 
horse ; but so far the school board has not taken any action on this 
last departure. 

For much of this information the state superintendent is in- 
debted to Mr. Wm. Stolley, director. 

DISTRICT SCHOOL NO. 3, FILLMORE COUNTY 

Until the summer of 1901 this school district used a frame build- 
ing which was as good as the average in many parts of Nebraska 
and better than the average in some places. At that time, however, 
the frame house was torn down and much of its material was 
utilized in the construction of a new and vastly better school build- 
ing, made of brick. The old and the new buildings are both illus- 
trated on the same page. The new building cost about $1,200, and 
instead of issuing bonds, a building fund was levied beginning two 
years before. The district thought it better to provide the neces- 
sary funds during the two years previous to the construction of 
the schoolhouse rather than during the five or ten years following 
its completion. They saved interest and some trouble. 

This new schoolhouse is the best one in Fillmore county, and is 
probably the only one that is scientifically lighted and correctly 
ventilated. The pupils face an unbroken east wall, with a natural 
slate blackboard extending from corner to corner. The windows 
in the west wall, the rear of the room, are set high enough to pro- 
vide another blackboard the entire length of that end of the room. 
The public road runs past the west end of the building, but the 
windows are so high that the school is not disturbed by passing 
teams, for the pupils cannot see out even if they should be standing. 
Along the north side of the building are four long windows reach- 
ing to the cornice above, and these with the hi^h windows in the 
west wall furnish enough light even on the darkest days. This 
north wall with windows is not shown in the illustration. The vesti- 
bule leads into the schoolroom and into the cloak room. In the 
wall between the schoolroom and the cloak room is fitted a book- 
case on the schoolroom side and shelves for dinner pails on the 
cloak room side. The schoolroom proper is 34x24 feet with a 12- 
foot ceiling. The cloak room is 16x7 feet, and the vestibule is 




TABLE ROCK PI'BLIC SCHOOL, Past, and— 




TABLE ROCK PUBLIC SCHOOL, 
Dedicated January 10, 1DU2 







*^^i 







PAWNEE CITY HIGH SCHOOL 




-'I 9L 



PAWNEE CITY HIGH SCHOOL 
Interior Views 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 207 

eight feet square. The furniture from the old building is at present 
used in the new one, but soon will be replaced by new desks. The 
blackboards are of natural slate, and anatomical and geographical 
charts are provided. A stove is used for heating, and this will 
soon be provided with a jacket. Fresh air is admitted from the 
outside by means of a duct leading in under the stove. The chil- 
dren, of course, face the east wall and receive the light mainly 
from the left and partly from the rear. The floor is "dead," resting 
on a layer of mortar several inches thick, which makes it as solid as 
a wall. The author had the pleasure of visiting the school in this 
building last fall, and he thinlcs it compares favorably with the 
model rural schoolhouse illustrated in the frontispiece. The Fill- 
more county building possesses one advantage in being built of 
brick. Its architect is Mr. T. J. Beals, of Geneva. 

TABLE ROCK PUBLIC SCHOOL 

Until January lo, 1902, the village of Table Rock used as a 
schoolhouse one of the most barn-like structures in the state, but 
since that date the children in that school district have been housed 
in one of the neatest, handsomest, most substantial, most conveni- 
ent and commodious school buildings in any village the size of 
Table Rock anywhere in the state of Nebraska. The new school- 
house is built of the finest home-made vitrified brick, with blue 
flint stone trimmings, also home-grown, and well finished wood- 
work. All the equipment and the furniture are quite modern. The 
building complete cost about $12,000. It contains an office, a lab- 
oratory, a recitation room and seven schoolrooms, all well ar- 
ranged and correctly lighted. The natural slate blackboard is three 
feet in width in the upper rooms and four feet wide below. The 
building is heated with steam. There are cloak rooms, but no in- 
terior toilet rooms. Table Rock "celebrated" on the occasion of 
the dedication of its new school building, and Superintendent 
Wimberley's little girl recited an original poem cgncluding as 
follows : 

"So farewell to the old schoolhouse ; we are told 
We must bid it a sad adieu. 
Each girl and each boy will hail with great joy 
A welcoming into the new." 



208 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

PAWNEE CITY HIGH SCHOOL 

This new high school building was erected in 1899 at a cost of 
$13,000. It contains an assembly room, two recitation rooms, 
library, laboratory, office, store room and four schoolrooms for the 
grammar grades. The blackboards are painted upon the cement 
plaster. The building is heated with steam and ventilated by means 
of shafts heated by steam coils. There is a cloak room in connec- 
tion with each schoolroom, but no interior toilet rooms. The rooms 
are lighted from the left and rear. The building is a plain but a 
solid and substantial one, conveniently arranged. The walls are 
tinted a shade of green. 

LINCOLN HIGH SCHOOL 

The old Lincoln high school or central building, now known as 
Science Hall, was built in 1872 at a cost of about $50,000. The 
building contains nearly twenty rooms, including laboratories and 
recitation rooms. These are seated mostly with tables and chairs 
and school desks of various makes. The blackboards are of plaster. 
The building is heated with steam and not properly ventilated. It 
is poorly adapted to present needs. 

The new Lincoln high school building, known as Administra- 
tion Building, was erected in 1897 at a cost of $25,000. It con- 
tains twenty-two rooms for various purposes. Here, also, plaster 
blackboards are in use, and the building is heated by steam and 
ventilated by the gravity system. There are ventilating flues with 
heated coils inserted to create an upward draft. The building con- 
tains a large assembly room for the accommodation of the entire 
Lincoln high school. 

SYRACUSE PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This brick building was erected in 1890 at a cost of $10,000. It 
contains an assembly room, laboratory, recitation room, two store 
rooms and five schoolrooms for the accommodation of all the grades 
from the first through the eleventh. It is seated with single desks 
and furnished with slate blackboards and good apparatus. It is 
heated with steam and inadequately ventilated by means of cold air 
shafts and dead air flues. There is a cloak room in connection with 
each schoolroom, but no interior toilet rooms. The rooms are well 




LINCOLN HIGH SCHOOL (OLD) 
(Now Science Hall) 




LINCOLN HIGH SCHOOL 




SYRACUSE PUBLIC SCHOOL 




.-^iNoWORTH PUBLIC SCHOOL. 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA . 211 

lighted, mainly from the left and rear. The building resembles 
the one at Sterling. 

AINSWORTH PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This building was constructed in 1895 of common brick at a cost 
of $10,000. It contains a large high school room, a laboratory, a 
library and five schoolrooms for the accommodation of all the 
grades from the first through the eleventh. The desks are nearly 
all old ones. The blackboards are partly of natural slate and partly 
of felt. The building is heated by hot air, with some ventilation. 

BRADY PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This two-room frame building was erected in 1893 at a cost of 
$2,000. There is a primary room located elsewhere in the village. 
The rooms are heated by means of stoves and lighted from both 
sides. Many of the pupils come from the country and several from 
other districts. The illustration shows the pupils as they are about 
to start for their homes in conveyances of different kinds, just after 
four o'clock. 

PRAIRIE QUEEN SCHOOL, SARPY COUNTY 

This schoolhouse in district No. 33 of Sarpy county was erected 
about 1884 at a cost of $1,000. It is a little better than the average 
rural schoolhouse in Sarpy county and eastern Nebraska. It is 
furnished with patent desks, slate blackboards, globe, dictionary, 
charts, etc. 

PAPILLION PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This is one of the best school buildings in Sarpy county. It was 
erected in 1892 at a cost of $20,000. It contains six schoolrooms, 
a laboratory, a library, play rooms, etc., for the eleven grades. It 
is seated with both single and double desks, furnished with slate 
blackboards, physical apparatus, maps, etc. It is heated and venti- 
lated by means of the Smead hot-air system. There are cloak 
rooms, and also toilet rooms in the basement. The rooms arc 
lighted mainly from the left and rear. The building is constructed 
of pressed brick, with wide hallways and stairways, and hard-wood 
floors. 



212 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

GRETNA PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This building- was erected in 1898 at a cost of nearly $8,000. It 
contains four schoolrooms and two or three smaller rooms. It is 
furnished with single desks and slate blackboards, maps and globes. 
It is heated with steam and well ventilated. There are cloak rooms, 
but no interior toilet rooms. Two of the schoolrooms are lighted 
from the left and rear and the other two from the right and rear. 
The building is faced wath the very best buff pressed brick. The 
grounds are 255 x 382 feet, and they have 1,000 linear feet of brick 
pavement, four, six and eight feet in width. 

LONG PINE PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This building was erected in 1888 at a cost of $4,000. It contains 
four schoolrooms and two recitation rooms for the use of the eleven 
grades. The blackboards are of hyloplate. The building is heated 
with stoves but not ventilated except as shown in the illustration. 

CRAWFORD PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This building was erected in 1891 at a cost of $20,000. It is 
situated on a high hill overlooking the village of Crawford, in north- 
western Nebraska. It contains seven schoolrooms, a recitation 
room, library, laboratory, and some rooms in the basement where 
the children may play and eat their lunches, and also rooms in which 
the janitor and his wife live. The furniture is good, the black- 
boards of liquid slating and the apparatus fair. The building is 
heated with steam and ventilated. There are cloak rooms but no 
interior toilet rooms. 

WEEPING WATER PUBLIC SCHOOL 

This building was erected in 1890 except the third story, which 
was added in 1899. The building cost $15,000. It contains ten 
rooms for the accommodation of all the grades. It is furnished 
with double desks and hyloplate blackboard, and is fairly well 
equipped with apparatus for the laboratories. It is heated with 
steam and ventilated. It contains cloak rooms but no interior 
toilet rooms. The schoolrooms are lighted mainly from the left 
and rear. 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 223 

rented for a school in a slum district, or in a mere shanty school 
in the west of Ireland. The great purpose of learning to know 
printed language, to become eye-minded instead of ear-minded — to 
gain besides one's colloquial vocabulary also a vocabu'ary of sci- 
ence and literature and philosophy — to become able to understand 
and use technical language — all these things came then and come 
now to the gifted youth without the improvements in hygiene that 
we clamor for. Abraham Lincoln read by the fire-light of the 
blazing hearth and fed his mighty mind. 

It is true that the average of life in those unhygienic days was 
far less than now. But the illiterate savage does not reach a life 
average so great as the unhygienic but civilized man, and what is 
more to the point, fifty years of Europe is worth a cycle of Cathay. 
A rational life, growing in the production of science and art and 
literature, and in diffusing the blessing of civilization, is better than 
a savage life, even if the latter were to have an average of eighty 
years, while the former were to have an average of thirty years. 
According to the merely biologic point of view, life is life whether 
of plant or animal or man, and the more of it the better. But such 
is not the spiritual point of view. 



224 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



A Proposed School Law 

AN ACT PROVIDING FOR THE HEATING, LIGHTING Al,^ . iiiMTILATING 

OF PUBLIC SCHOOLHOUSES, AND FIXING PENALTIES FOR A 

VIOLATION OF THE PROVISIONS THEREOF 

Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Nebraska: 

Section i. It shall hereafter be unlawful in the state of Ne- 
braska to let any contract for, or to construct any public school- 
house, or school building, or to reconstruct or remodel any old 
schoolhouse or other building, to be thereafter used for school pur- 
poses, the lighting, heating and ventilating of which is not in full 
accord with the provisions of this act. 

Sec 2. All public school buildings, hereafter constructed or re- 
modeled for school purposes, must be lighted by windows placed in 
the rear and side wall or walls of each class and study room, and 
such v/indows shall contain glass surface of not less than one-fifth 
of the floor space of each room ; and all desks and seats shall be so 
arranged that the windows shall be on the left and in the rear, so 
far as possible, of the pupils. 

Sec. 3. All class and study rooms shall contain not less than fif- 
teen feet of floor space and not less than one hundred and eighty feet 
of air space for each pupil. 

Sec. 4. All public schoolhouses or school buildings of four or 
more rooms each, which shall hereafter be constructed or remod- 
eled for school purposes, must be provided with such heating and 
ventilating apparatus as will facilitate the introduction of warm 
air, when occasion requires, into each class or study room, not less 
than eight feet above the floor line, with provision for the exit of 
impure air at the floor line ; and the whole shall be so arranged that 
the required temperature can be maintained throughout each room 
and the air changed in each room (measured at the exit opening) 
at least six times in each hour without lowering the temperature 
or creating a noticeable draft at or below the breathing line. 

Sec 5. All closets and urinals must be so constructed as to pro- 
vide for the separation of the pupils using the same. They must 
also be provided with vent flues, so arranged that all foul odors 
and air will be carried out below the breathing line. 








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SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 22" 

Sec. 6. Any contract for the construction or remodeling of any 
school building, not in conformity with the requirements of this 
act, shall be void ; and any public school officer or contractor who 
shall violate the terms and conditions of this act, by letting or ac- 
cepting any contract for the constructing or remodeling of any 
public sclioolhouse or school building not in conformity with this 
act. shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor, and shall be subject to 
a fine of not less than fifty dollars nor more than five hundred dol- 
lars for each ofifense. 



We believe that the standards for school architecture, including 
the proper seating, heating, lighting, ventilation and ornamentation 
of school buildings should be as definite as the standards for teach- 
ing. The law should fix the dimensions and all other requirements 
of school buildings as well as the size and character of school 
grounds. — From declaration of principles adopted by unanimous 
vote of the National Educational Association. 



228 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



The Rural School Problem: A Solution. 

CONSOLIDATION OF SCHOOL DISTRICTS, CENTRALIZATION OF SCHOOLS, 
AND PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION OF PUPILS. 

I have great faith in the rural school, in its powers, and of what 
it may do for the individual pupil, but I think the result of its work 
on the average does not ccmpare with the work of the best city 
schools, and cannot under the present conditions. How to improve 
the present conditions is a serious problem, and I know of but one 
solution. Rural mail delivery is now spreading through this west- 
em country. Roads are being improved. Telephones are coming 
into common use in the country as well as in the cities. Several 
counties in the eastern part of the state have lately organized county 
telephone systems, and before long all calls for physicians, for sup- 
plies and provisions, for broken castings for farm machinery, for 
twine for the binder, for drugs and medicines and for hundreds of 
other little things will be by telephone, and thereby one-half of the 
time usually expended in securing them will be saved. 

We must enrich rural life and increase the advantages of the 
farmer and his family in order to counteract the flow of humanity 
from country to city. A census bulletin issued last year states that 
the percentage of population of the United States in cities of 8,000 
or more inhabitants has steadily increased each decade. It was 
3.4 per cent in 1790, 12.5 per cent in 1850, 22.6 per cent in 1880, 
29.2 per cent in 1890, and 33.1 per cent in 1900. The percentage 
of our population that lived in cities of 4,000 inhabitants or more 
in 1880 was 25.8; in 1890, 32.9; and in 1900, 37.3. These figures are 
significant. They mean that from 1880 to 1890 seven persons in 
every one hundred of our population moved from country or village 
to city and none moved back. From 1890 to 1900 four or five per- 
sons in every one hundred moved from country or village to city 
and none moved back. What shall we do to be saved from our 
great cities? Shall we permit the decay and destruction of our 
pure country life, or shall we endeavor to bring some of the great 
comforts and conveniences and advantages of city life into the 
country ? 

Now for years we have been working at cutting up this state and 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 229 

its counties into small school districts. Schools of a few pupils are 
the rule, and large schools are the exception. What inspiration can 
the pupils of a school of three or four or half a dozen have to do 
good work? There is no life, energy, inspiration, emulation or de- 
sire to excel. The school is dead spiritually and intellectually, and 
I have seen many a small school that might as well have been dis- 
continued as far as practical results were concerned. You may be 
doing well under the conditions, but what are the conditions? How 
could they be much worse ? Poor, battered old schoolhouses, some- 
times lacking paint, with cannon-ball stoves, and cheerless yards ; 
while in our cities we are building modern, scientific structures, 
correctly heated, ventilated, lighted and seated, often built of brick, 
sometimes with stone foundations and with beautiful surroundings. 
]\Tany of the best schools of the state are in towns employing from 
three to six teachers. There they have but two or three classes in 
each room, with all the rooms in one building, a principal who may 
know what each class is doing, thereby securing better and closer 
supervision than is possible in larger places, and a janitor to look 
after school property. 

Why do you not have the same in your rural communities ? It is 
not an impossibility. Let me suggest to you what has been done 
in some of the eastern states. Thirty years ago in Massachusetts 
they began centralizing their rural schools by public transportation 
of pupils in vans or wagons. About ten years ago the plan had 
reached Ohio, and in the last few }ears it has spread into Indiana, 
Illinois, and is now being strongly advocated in Iowa. Briefly the 
plan is this : Instead of nine rural districts with about four sec- 
tions of land each, teachers with salaries of about $35, and an aver- 
age enrollment of twenty pupils, we have in the center of the 
township a brick building of four rooms, with forty-five pupils in 
each room, and two or three grades only. We may have a princi- 
pal of considerable training and experience, who receives a salary 
of from $60 to $75, and teaches the highest room. The three other 
teachers receive about $45 each. There is a janitor who looks after 
the building, its heating plant, its toilet rooms or outlniildings and 
the grounds generally. There may be sheds in whic' the horses 
are kept during the day. The pupils are gathered from various 
parts of the township by covered vans or wagons that start at 7 45 
A.M., or at a stated regular time, day after day, and cover an cstab- 



230 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

lishcd route, picking up the children along the way and delivering 
them at the schoolhouse at about 8 145 ; distributing them again 
after four o'clock in the afternoon. Where the plan has been in 
operation, the drivers selected are clean, capable, sober men, not 
given to profanity or tobacco, and are paid $25 or $30 per month. 
They furnish their own team and wagon, with lap robes, and as a 
rule, carpet their vehicles and provide seats ; let me say right here, 
that in bad weather, in rain or storm or strong wind, I would rather 
my child would ride five miles in such a vehicle than walk one or 
two miles. In pleasant weather, I would just as soon have him 
walk as ride. 

CONSOLIDATION OF SCHOOLS 

To overcome the many disadvantages in the present rural school 
system in Nebraska, and for the purpose of giving every farmer's 
girl and boy in this noble commonwealth opportunities equal to 
those of the girls and boys of the village and city, we recommend 
to the careful consideration of every rural school board and to the 
fathers and mothers in these rural districts the consolidation of 
schools and the transportation of pupils. Consolidate, or central- 
ize, the weak districts into a common central school, conveying the 
pupils from every part of the greater district or the congressional 
township to and from the central schools by means of covered vans 
or wagons, in charge of clean, capable, careful drivers. Such a 
plan would now be legal, as the six-mile limit in the formation of 
school districts has been removed. And we already have the trans- 
portation law. Notice the following provisions of Nebraska School 
Laws. 

1. One district may be discontinued, and its territory attached to 
other adjoining districts, upon petitions signed by one-half of the 
legal voters of each district affected. (Subdivision i, Section 4, 
Fourth Condition.) 

2. The six-mile limit in the formation of school districts has been 
removed, and districts may now be formed extending more than six 
miles in any direction. 

3. The district board may (and usually should) close the weaker 
and smaller schools in a district and transport the pupils at public 
expense to any other school in the district. A board of education of 
a city, or a board of trustees of a high school district, by a two- 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 23I 

thirds vote of the entire board, or a district board of any school dis- 
trict in this state when authorized by a two-thirds vote of those 
present at any annual or special meeting, is hereby empowered to 
make provision for the transportation of pupils residing within said 
district to any other school (within said district) to which said 
pupils may lawfully attend, whenever the distance from such schools 
shall render it impracticable for said pupils to attend without trans- 
portation. (Subdivision 5, Section 4b.) 

4. Or, the district board may close school and transport their 
pupils at public expense to a neighboring district without forfeiting 
the state apportionment. A board of trustees of a high school district, 
or a district board of a school district in this state, when authorized 
by a two-thirds vote of those present at any annual or special meet- 
ing, is hereby empowered to contract with the district board of any 
neighboring district for the instruction of (all) pupils residing in 
the first named district in schools maintained by the neighboring 
district, and to make provision for the transportation of said pupils 
to the above-named school of the neighboring district under the 
conditions named in the preceding section ; Provided, That school 
districts thus providing instruction for their children in neighbor- 
ing districts shall be considered as maintaining a school as required 
by law ; Provided, further, That the teacher of the last-named 
school shall keep a separate record of attendance of all pupils from 
the first named district and make a separate' report to the director 
of said district. 

This idea of consolidation and transportation is not original with 
us. It has proven a success in many states east of Nebraska. The 
merits of the plan may be briefly stated as follows : 

1. It permits a better grading of the schools and classification of 
pupils. Consolidation allows pupils to be placed where they can 
work to the best advantage, the various subjects of study to be 
wisely selected and correlated and more time to be given to recita- 
tions. Pupils work in graded schools, and both teachers and pupils 
are under systematic and closer supervision. 

2. It affords an opportunity for thorough work in special 
branches, such as drawing, music and nature study. It also allows 
an enrichment in other lines. 

3. It opens the doors to more weeks of schooling and to scliools 
of a higher grade. The people in villages almost invariably 



232 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

lengthen the school year and support a high school for advanced 
pupils. 

4. It insures the employment and retention of better teachers. 
Fewer teachers are required, so better teachers may be secured and 
better wages paid. 

5. It makes the work of the specialist and supervisor far more 
effective. Their plans and efforts can all be concentrated into some- 
thing tangible. 

6. It adds the stimulating influences of larger classes, with the 
resulting enthusiasm and generous rivalry. The discipline and 
training obtained are invaluable. 

7. It affords the broader companionship and culture that comes 
from association. 

8. It results in a better attendance of pupils, as proved by ex- 
perience in towns where the plan has been thoroughly tried. At- 
tendance is from 50 to 150 per cent greater, more regular and of 
longer continuance, and there is neither tardiness nor truancy. 

9. It leads to better school buildings, better heating, lighting and 
ventilating, better equipment, a larger supply of books, charts, maps 
and apparatus. All these naturally follow a concentration of peo- 
ple, wealth and effort, and aid in making good schools. The larger 
expenditure implied in these better appointments is wise economy, 
for the cost per pupil is really much less than the cost in small and 
widely separated schools^ but the cost in nearly all cases is reduced. 
Under thi^ is included cost and maintenance of school buildings, 
apparatus, furniture and tuition. This expenditure may be in- 
augurated gradually, by removing four or five of the better school 
buildings to the central location for temporary use. 

10. It quickens public interest in the schools. Pride in the quality 
of work done secures a greater sympathy and better fellowship 
throughout the township. Pupils are benefited by a wider circle of 
acquaintance and culture resulting therefrom. The whole com- 
munity is drawn together. 

11. The health of the children is better, the children being less 
exposed to stormy weather, and avoiding sitting in damp clothing. 

12. Public barges used for children in the daytime may be used 
to transport their parents to public gatherings in the evenings, to 
lecture courses, etc. 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 233 

13. Transportation makes possible the distribution of mail 
throughout the whole township daily. 

14. Finally, by transportation the farm again, as of old, becomes 
tl.e ideal place in which to bring up children, enabling them to se- 
cure the advantages of centers of population and spend their even- 
ings and holiday time in contact with nature and plenty of work, 
instead of idly loafing about town. 

We are in the midst of an industrial revolution. The principle 
of concentration has touched our farming, our manufacturing, our 
mining and our commerce. There are those who greatly fear the 
outcome. There are those who prophesied disaster and even the 
destruction of society on the introduction of labor-saving machin- 
ery. We have adjusted ourselves to the new conditions thus intro- 
duced. Most of us believe that we shall again adjust ourselves to 
the new industrial conditions. The changes in industrial and social 
conditions makes necessary similar changes in educational affairs. 
The watchword of today is concentration, the dominant force is 
centripetal. Not only for the saving of expense, but for the better 
quality of the work must we bring our pupils together. No manu- 
facturing business could endure a year run on a plan so extravagant 
as the district system of schools. 



234 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



The Passing of the District School 

BY M. VINCENT o'SHEA 
SCHOOI^ OF EDUCATION, THE UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN 

For many decades the little red schoolhouse has occupied a cov- 
eted place in the affections of the American people. It has been 
generally believed, whether justly or not, that most great men have 
learned how to shoot in the district school ; the lessons which have 
been taught there could never be learned anywhere else so well, it 
has been widely claimed. But those who attribute such virtues to 
the old-fashioned district school rarely attempt to show just wherein 
its peculiar worth lay. Ordinarily one would think that a school 
containing pupils ranging all the way from a-b-c tots to voters 
taking a round of algebra, and all taught by a single teacher re- 
cently graduated from the district school herself, working without 
apparatus and with text-books long since superannuated, — one 
would expect such an institution to be greatly handicapped in all its 
processes. And people in our day are coming to just this conclu- 
sion. They are realizing that because great men were bred in the 
country is not certain evidence that the district school made them 
great, or at least that it could not have been of far greater benefit 
to them. There are many who believe that the disadvantages under 
which the district school has labored have prevented it from doing 
the most for its pupils, and this is made especially manifest in 
modern life, when so much more is demanded of individuals than 
was expected or required a half century ago. 

So the most important movement now in progress affecting the 
education of children in the country is that which looks toward the 
improvement of the rural schools by consolidating the smaller dis- 
tricts into central graded schools. It is well known, of course, that 
the experiment has been tried in several states and has been found 
to be entirely feasible, and most people think eminently desirable, 
although it is true that there is vigorous opposition to it in every 
community in which it has not been tried. The reports of state 
superintendents which come to hand all set forth the advantages of 
consolidation, and they are urging it upon the schools under their 
jurisdiction. 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 235 

The most important of the reasons for absorption of the lone and 
soHtary district school into a larger central school, equipped with 
an adequate number of teachers and with suitable appliances for 
teaching in an efficient rnanner, will be evident to any one who will 
give the question some attention! For one thing it is an expensive 
matter to keep all the original district schools running full time 
and manned with competent instructors. It is more expensive in a 
certain sense in our day than it was twenty-five years ago, because 
the drift of people cityward has left almost pupilless communities 
once quite populous with youngsters of school age. A century ago 
four per cent of the people lived in cities ; now thirty per cent live 
there. The Hon. G. T. Fletcher, discussing the situation in Massa- 
chusetts, says : 

"Within the last fifty years changes have been wrought in social 
life and conditions. The increase of population and wealth in cen- 
ters of commerce and manufacturing is both a cause and a result of 
an exodus of the farming population to the cities and large towns. 

"In many rural communities farms are abandoned, or only the 
'old folks' left at home, to pass the remnant of their days, while the 
farm constantly depreciated in value. The yovmg, vigorous element 
of the population left home to work in store or factory. Families 
remaining in the 'hill towns,' or coming to them, had few children, 
and as a result the schools became small, the local interest in them 
often decreasing in the same ratio. These changes came in differ- 
ent degrees of severity to different towns. Those most favorably 
situated for farming purposes 'held their own' to quite an extent, 
in adult population and wealth, but the number of children con- 
stantly lessened, and the schools, though not generally reduced in 
number, were reduced greatly in attendance. Occasionally schools 
were united to increase the number of pupils, or a winter term was 
held in the center of the town for the older pupils of all the districts. 
Just when and where consolidation on a small scale began we can- 
not tell. The cause and the fact of a beginning are both evident. 
There came to the people, slowly at first, a realization that the 
interest, economy and efficiency that had in many cases character- 
ized the large number of schools of former days were wanting. The 
struggle to maintain the same number of schools as when the adult 
population was greater, the property valuation was twice as large, 
and the town had three times as many children of school age, was as 



2^6 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

painfully evident then as it is now. The school had been the com- 
mon center of interest, and the thought of its closing was a shock 
to the people. No wonder a deep-seated feeling existed, and still 
continues, that home interest and property valuation would suffer 
from the discontinuance of the local school." 

Late reports show that Maine has over a thousand schools with 
less than thirteen pupils. Vermont has in the neighborhood of two 
hundred with less than seven pupils. In 1897 New York had 3,090 
school districts having an average daily attendance of ten or less, 
but at the close of last year there were 3,550 such schools, making 
an increase of 461 during the past four years. And this phenome- 
non is more striking and significant when it is taken in connection 
with the further fact that the total number of districts in the state 
had been reduced during the period indicated from 10,965 to 10,791, 
a decrease of 174. Somewhat similar conditions are prevailing in 
the other states, at least in the older states, showing that the move- 
ment of pupils is away from the rural regions and towards the 
centers of population. Wisconsin has in the neighborhood of two 
hundred schools with less than six pupils, and a number of cases 
were reported where there were only two or three regular attend- 
ants. In some instances the climax was reached when a single regu- 
lar attendant was taken sick, and the teacher was left without any 
one to instruct. 

In the old-time district school with fifty or more pupils of all ages 
from four to twenty-one, there were many great obstacles to ef- 
fective teaching, but the school of two or three pupils, or even ten, 
is at a still greater disadvantage, for the reason that the stimulus 
which comes from a healthy rivalry and the reaction of pupils upon 
one another is lacking. Moreover, in a school of these dimensions 
there will usually be but one pupil in a class, and this is not enough 
to inspire a teacher to do her best. Quintilian indicated long ago 
that a tutor could instruct a number of children better than one 
alone, since numbers would rouse him to genuine effort and call 
forth the best that is in him. 

Then, too, no community can be induced to provide proper facil- 
ities for the teaching of but half a dozen children. As a result 
things are going to the bad in the districts where pupils are growing 
steadily fewer in number. The buildings are in a decadent con- 
dition, there is no encouragement to replace worn out reference 



School buildings and grounds in nebrasica 237 

books and illustrative charts in schools that were at any time so 
fortunate as to have had anything of the sort; and worst of all 
people will not get a competent teacher when she can give instruc- 
tion to no more than a dozen children. In one of the most pros- 
perous communities in Illinois a simple, immature, helpless girl 
was engaged last fall to take charge of a district school where 
there were about fifteen pupils pursuing studies all the way from 
the alphabet to algebra. She was about as unfit as one could well 
be to take charge of any of the pupils, but particularly of two or 
three of the older boys who knew as much of the world as she did, 
and had as much strength of character. It is pitiful to think of the 
schooling they will get this year in that district school ; and what 
is true of that community is true of many another, as the readers 
of this note can doubtless testify. 

People are opposed to the plan of centralization mainly because 
the difi'erent comnumities do not want any authority taken out of 
their hands. In most localities the trusteeship of the district school 
is the only public office to which many of the men ever aspire, and 
they look with much disfavor upon any plan which would pre- 
vent them from serving their fellow-citizens, and incidentally from 
obtaining local fame. The school district is the smallest unit of 
government, but it is not the least jealous of its prerogatives, and it 
must be expected that the proposal to merge this unit into larger 
units will always arouse many apprehensions and arouse a good 
deal of hostile feeling. But this objection can be met in a way by 
so arranging it that the various communities entering into consoli- 
dation may be represented in the central school board. The central 
school then would be controlled by a board of trustees made up of 
delegates from each district uniting. This mode of procedure is, 
of course, followed in the government of all bodies where there arc 
communities or localities or wards with interests more or less dis- 
tinct. Every city has its sections with a man to represent each in 
the common council ; so in this consolidated school district the orig- 
inal districts will constitute the wards or sections, each entitled to 
one or more members to the central school council. 

Another objection urged is the one of increased cost. It is said 
that it will be more expensive to have a central school to which 
pupils must be conveyed in some way. In most of the states where 
the plan is in operation children are conveyed to the central scliool 



23S SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

by means of carriages Avhich call for each one in the morning and 
deliver him at his door at night. To one who has not figured it out 
this would seem to involve great expense ; but when the saving in 
teachers' wages is considered, and also in the maintenance of a 
number of school buildings, it can be realized that there is a possi- 
bility of gain instead of loss in centralization. In Kingsville town- 
ship, Ohio, the cost per pupil for a year's schooling has been re- 
duced from about ^2t, to $12. The township saved a thousand 
dollars in three years. There has been a saving in Madison county 
in the same state of $4 per pupil. Winnebago county, in Iowa, 
saved nearly $500 in a year. The report of the work in Connecticut 
states that eighty-four schools were closed, 849 pupils were trans- 
ported to central schools, and there w'as an increase in cost in only 
a single case. Similar figures have been presented in the reports of 
other state superintendents, all of which indicate that centraliza- 
tion can be carried out with a saving in expense to the community. 

Another prominent objection to the scheme of centralization is 
that it will lead to a depreciation of property in the districts in 
which the school is closed, but this fear has been shown to be en- 
tirely unfounded. As Superintendent Fulson, of New Hampshire, 
has said, "a schoolhouse on every farm would not repopulate the 
rural sections of our state." Quite the opposite effect, indeed, 
would be realized from the conveyance of pupils to an efficient 
central school. People who now live in the city that they may give 
their children the advantages of modern schooling would, under 
the centralization system, be induced to go to the country if they 
could secure the advantages they now do in the large centers. There 
seems to be some evidence of this forthcoming already from the 
older states, as New Hampshire. 

It is claimed again by many that it would be a severe strain upon 
a child to ride a long distance each day to and from a central school. 
Several state superintendents who sent out circulars asking for 
statements of opinion on the matter received answers to the effect 
that children would have to endure great hardships in transit. They 
would have to ride with wet feet; they would be improperly 
dressed for such experiences, etc., etc. But in most places where 
the plan is w^orking the children have no opportunity to get their 
feet w'et. The carriage calls for them at the door and returns them 
to the door. The old-fashioned method of walking a mile or two to 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 239 

the local school entailed many more hardships than the plan of riding 
in properly equipped conveyances. In many states the carriages 
have means of heating in the coldest weather, and it is inserted in 
the contracts that those who engage in the transportation of pupils 
shall provide warm blankets and other conveniences for all children. 

Many feel again that they do not want their children to be so far 
away from their care all day. But in the local school they are 
away all day, and the average parent never sees the school from one 
year's end to the other, and the child might as well be a dozen miles 
away as one ; he is out of reach anyway. There have been some 
fears expressed that the central school plan would result in injury 
to the morals of children, since bringing so many together would 
provide opportunity for the dissemination of bad manners and vices ; 
but quite the contrary result may reasonably be expected from con- 
solidation. One of the most serious defects of the local school is 
due to the unhealthful suggestions received by pupils from the out- 
buildings. They get out of repair, there is none to look after them, 
and then they become objects for the pens and knives of those whose 
minds are not altogether wholesome. But in the central school, 
where greater care would be exercised in these matters, this source 
of contagion could be wholly done azvay with. Then, with better 
trained teachers and with suitable provision for play grounds, the 
pupils would be kept together under conditions which would de- 
velop the best in them instead of the worst. As it is now in the 
local school the children run together without guidance or sug- 
gestion from the teacher. She is usually incapable of leading chil- 
dren in their out-of-door life, and really exercises no influence over 
them ; but it would certainly be different with teachers who have 
had some training in the ways of getting hold of children out of 
school as well as in it. 

The advantages of such a system are numerous and vital. Tn 
every community where the matter has been investigated it has been 
found that the attendance has been increased, and there has been 
less truancy, less irregularity. The health of children has been 
imi)roved, due ]:)rincipally to more healthful condition of school 
buildings, they being better heated, lighted, ventilated and clcaneil. 
There is greater incentive and enthusiasm on the part of pupils 
when they are brought in contact with others out of tlicir immedi- 
ate neighborhood. The whole tone of the school life is improved; 



^40 SCflOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

individual pupils get to know a larger number of people and lose 
the awkward, bashful, diffident manner characteristic of the coun- 
try child in isolation. This plan gives an opportunity to provide 
special training in drawing and music which the local school has 
to do without absolutely. Most important of all, this plan promotes 
social growth and organization through the unifying influence of 
the children coming in contact with larger numbers, and the inter- 
ests of the home extending out to a broader community. The farm 
becomes less isolated. The children going to a central point each 
day will bring back much that will unite any one farm to others in 
a broader unity. 

— The World Review. 



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I 

I 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA ^4! 



The Centralized Schools of Ohio 

REPORT OF A VISIT OF SUPT. O. J. KERN OF WINNEBAGO COUNTY, 

(rOCKFORD) ILLINOIS, TO THE CENTRALIZED SCHOOLS OF 

OHIO, OCTOBER, I9OO 

It was an extremely interesting and profitable trip. So numer- 
ous have been the inquiries for information concerning the im- 
proved system for district schools in Ohio that, as a result, this 
report is given in the hopes that what is herein described of our 
visit to Ohio may lead to better things for Illinois. Our tour of in- 
spection was through Lake, Ashtabula, Trumbull and Geaugua 
counties, some of the finest portion of the Western Reserve. This 
country was originally settled by people from the New England 
states. We were received with utmost kindness wherever we went, 
and no pains were spared to make our visit pleasant and profitable. 
Last, but not least, the weather was all that could be desired, and 
our drives over a beautiful country with every evidence of prosper- 
ity were thoroughly enjoyable. Enough frost had touched the 
maples to make the leaves scarlet and golden, and with the glimpses 
of the blue waters of Lake Erie made a scene never to be forgotten. 

The first place we visited was Perry, Lake county, where there is 
a township high school. The Principal, Prof. Morrison, is a pioneer 
in the matter of centralization. He assured us that the experiment 
was no longer an experiment, that the new movement was the log- 
ical solution of the country school problem, and that centralization 
of districts with transportation of pupils had come to stay. It gave 
much better schools with but a slight, if any, increase in the cost 
to the township. The opposition to the plan has long since died 
out. This has been the testimony at every place visited thus far. 
At this particular place, however, there was only one wagon draw- 
ing children. So we drove on to North Madison, in Madison town- 
ship, where three wagons are used. On our way there we saw the 
first wagon. We stopped at the farm house and talked with the 
driver. He carried all the children from one district, about twenty 
in number. His route was five miles long. That is to say, starting 
at the first home to pick up a child until he arrived at the central 
school was five miles. Then he drove back home after delivering 



^4^ SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

the chiklroii, tluis covering ten miles in the morning. Of course 
he traveled the same ground after school, thus making twenty 
miles in all. He got $1.20 a day for his work. We asked him if 
he made any money at it. He said he did, as he was working a 
small farm that did not require all the time and labor of himself 
and team. We asked him if he had any trouble with the children, 
and he replied none. He said he was employed by the township 
board of education, who put him under bond to be careful with the 
children ; to have a safe team ; to provide a suitable wagon, covered 
and provided with curtains, and containing soapstones and lap robes 
for the severest weather. We asked what objections the parents 
along the route had to the new plan. His reply was that the only 
objection was on the part of two or three at the beginning of the 
route, as they had to get their children ready somewhat earlier 
than they used to when they went to the district school. Of course 
the children must be ready when the wagon came. He aimed to 
start at 7 130 and arrive at the building not later than 8 :45. Thus 
there were no children tardy ; none came with wet feet or clothing ; 
the attendance was greatly increased and much more regular. The 
driver believed the movement had come to stay ; that the people 
would not consent to go back to the old way. A short distance on 
towards the centralized school we had a very interesting conversa- 
tion with Mr. Fuller, a member of the Township Board of Edu- 
cation. Mr. Fuller is a public-spirited, prosperous farmer, and 
believed in giving the country children the best educational advan- 
tages possible. And while the new plan did not materially increase 
the cost, yet the amount of taxes was not the first consideration. 
He had four boys. One was at home on the farm ; another was in 
Delaware University; a third was in school in Cleveland, while the 
fourth was in business in Cleveland. His girls were in the central- 
ized school. He knew the value of the new plan and was sure the 
people would not go back to the old method. The opposition had 
long since died out, and the bitterest opponents three or four years 
ago are now the most enthusiastic supporters. They have seen the 
value of a well graded school, with good teachers, over an un- 
graded one, with cfttimes indifferent teachers. We visited the 
schoolhouse during the noon hour and did not have time to see the 
school in operation. We next drove to Unionville, and had a 
pleasant visit at a two-room school. The children were fine speci- 




l; 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 245 

mens of the American public school. The Principal, Mr. Adams, 
was township superintendent for Madison township, and has had 
considerable experience with centralized schools. His testimony as 
to the value of the new system over the old and his belief in the 
permanence of the movement were stronger, if anything, than that 
which we had heard at Perry and North Madison. The cost had 
not been increased. 

We next visited Kingsville in Ashtabula county, 401 miles east 
of Chicago. This was our farthest point east. Kingsville is a 
small village with a township high school. To this school are 
brought all the children of the township, with the exception of two 
districts. Four wagons are used, at a cost of $20, $25, $24 and $28 
per month, respectively, for a month of twenty days. The school 
year is nine months. Five teachers are employed in the building. 
The testimony of the principal of the school, the town clerk and Mr. 
Kinneer of the Board of Education was that there was an actual 
saving in the total cost to the township under the new plan ; and 
while money was expended for transportation of pupils, it was 
more than saved in the fewer number of schools operated. And as 
to the increased efficiency of the new centralized school over the 
scattered schools, that was beyond a question of doubt. 

It was here that the Ohio plan of centralization had its origin in 
1892. The erection of a new building in one of the districts of 
Kingsville township brought up the question whether or not it 
would be better to abandon the school in that district and take the 
children to the village school at the general expense. In this first case 
of consolidation in Ohio the schools were centralized at the village 
school, a village situated about a mile and a half from the railroad. 
The results, educationally, in the small .districts were far from sat- 
isfactory. In order to consolidate and transport children at public 
expense, special legislation was necessary. So the Ohio legislature 
passed the following bill, April 17, 1894: 

"Section i. Be it enacted by the General Assembly of Ohio, 
That any Board of Education in any township, which by the census 
of 1890 had a population not less than 1.710 or more than 1.715, 
of any county, which by the same census had not less than 43,650. 
nor more than 43,660 inhabitants, may, at their discretion, appro- 
priate funds derived from the school tax levy of said township for 
the conveyance of pupils in sub-districts from their homes to the 



246 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

high school building of such township ; provided, such appropria- 
tion for any sub-district shall not exceed the amount necessary, in 
the judgment of the board, for the maintenance of a teacher in 
such sub-district for tl.e same period of time." 

The Ringsvilie plan proved such a success that on April 2y. 1896, 
the Ohio legislature passed a bill for the relief of the counties of 
Stark, Ashtabula and Portage, which provided that the Board of 
Education of any township of those counties may, "when in its opin- 
ion it will be for the best interest of the pupils in any sub-district, 
suspend the school in such sub-district and provide for the con- 
veyance of said pupils to such other district or districts as may be 
convenient for them ; the cost of such conveyance to be paid out of 
the contingent ftind of said district ; provided, the board of any 
special school district in any county mentioned above may provide 
for the conveyance of pupils out of the contingent funds, the same 
as townships aforesaid." 

Since then a general law has been enacted, permitting the people 
of any township at the annual town election to vote "yes" or "no" 
on the proposition to centralize the schools of that township ; i. e., 
to abandon the small districts and transport the children at public 
expense to the central school. Such, in brief, is the history of the 
legislation. And as to the result of the Kingsville experiment, I 
can do no better than to quote from the Arena for July, 1859. It 
was a beautiful day in October, 1900, that we visited Kingsville, and 
our inspection of the school, our conversation with the teachers and 
school officers, our seeing the children loaded into wagons and 
driven to their homes, made a deep impression on me, at least. But 
the quotation : 

"The residents of the sub-districts of Kingsville township which 
have adopted tnis plan would deem it a retrogression to go back to 
the old sub-district plan. It has given the school system of Kings- 
ville an individuality which makes it unique and progressive. Pupils 
from every part of the township enjoy a graded school education, 
whether they live in the most remote comer of the township or at 
the very doors of the central school. The line between the country 
bred and the village bred youth is blotted out. They study the 
same books, are competitors for the same honors and engage in 
the same sports and pastimes. This mingling of the pupils from 
the sub-districts and the village has had a deepening and broadening 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 249 

influence on the former without any disadvantage to the latter. 
With the grading of the school and the larger number of pupils 
have come teachers of a more highly educated class. Higher 
branches of study are taught, the teachers are more conversant with 
the needs of their profession. The salaries arc higher; the health 
of the pupils is preserved, because they are not compelled to walk 
to school in slush, snow and rain, to sit with damp, and perhaps wet 
feet, in ill-ventilated buildings. Nor is there any lounging by the 
wayside. As the use of indecent and obscene language is pro- 
hibited in the wagons, all opportunities for quarreling or improper 
conduct on the way to and from school are removed. The attend- 
ance is larger, and in the sub-districts which have taken advantage 
of the plan it has increased from 50 to 150 per cent in some cases; 
truancy is unknown. It has lengthened the school years for a 
number of the sub-districts ; it has increased the demands for farms 
in those sub-districts which have adopted the plan, and real estate 
therein is reported more salable. The drivers act as daily mail 
carriers. All parts of the township have been brought into closer 
touch and sympathy. The cost of maintenance is less than that of 
the schools under the sub-district plan; the township has had no 
schoolhouses to build ; it has paid less for repair and fuel. Since 
the schools were consolidated the incidental expenses have de- 
creased from $800 to $1,100 per year to from $400 to $600 per 
year. In the first three years following its adoption Kingsville 
township actually saved $1,000." 

We left Kingsville feeling that we had traveled nearly 500 miles 
to a good purpose. Before leaving we had an amateur photographer 
take snap shots of the wagons, children, school building and our- 
selves. [See illustration of Centralized School, Kingsville, Ashta- 
bula county, Ohio.] 

The schools we visited in Lake and Ashtabula counties were vil- 
lage schools with the children brought to these villages from the 
outlving districts. In each case there was a saving of expense. 
Superintendent J. R. Adams of Madison township, Lake county, 
whose school we visited, says that "under the new plan the cost of 
tuition per pupil, on the basis of total enrollment, has liceTT 
reduced from $16.00 to $10.48; on the basis of average daily at- 
tendance, from $26.66 to $16.07. The total expense will he about 
the same in this district as under the old plan, but the cost per pupil 



250 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

will be much less." This is easily explained when one under- 
stands that the school attendance has increased from 217 to 300 
pupils since consolidation has been effected. 

But we w'ished to find centralized schools in a purely country 
township, where there was no village or village school, a place 
where country life was being preserved. We went thirty-five miles 
south from Ashtabula and visited Gustavus and Green townships 
in Trumbull county. The first place visited was Gustavus. This 
township is exactly five miles square, as are all the townships of the 
Western Reserve with the exception of those along the shore of 
Lake Erie. In Gustavus township the town hall is situated exactly 
in the center of the township, as is the case in Green township. 
Here was a church, the post-office, a country store and a few houses. 

I had a picture of the centralized school of Gustavus township 
and was anxious to see the real thing. We saw it and all was as 
represented. The school building is located in the center of the 
township. The school has been in operation two years. It is a 
four-room school, having a principal and three assistants. All the 
children of the township are brought to this central school, and 
nine wagons are employed in the transportation. [See illustration 
of Wagons Used in the Transportation of Children, Gustavus town- 
ship, Trumbull county, Ohio.] 

The wagons are provided with curtains, lap-robes, soapstones, 
etc., for severe weather. The board of education exercises as much 
care in the selection of drivers as they do in teachers. The contract 
for each route is let out to the lowest responsible bidder, who is 
under bond to fulfil his obligations. The drivers are required to 
have the children on the school grounds at 8:45 a.m., which does 
away with tardiness, and to leave for home at 3 45 p.m. The wag- 
ons call at every farmhouse where there are school children, the 
children thus stepping into the wagons at the roadside and are set 
down upon the school grounds. There is no tramping through the 
snow and mud, and the attendance is much increased and far more 
regular. With the children under the control of a responsible driver 
there is no opportunity for vicious conversation or the terrorizing 
of the little ones by some bully as they trudge homeward through 
the snow and mud from the district school. 

The following diagram is self-explanatory: 



r 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS A.\D GROUNDS IX XliURASKA 



251 




\rarm house, no children \-hhanJtoneci &chooi. 



■ *• Utreci-ton of route t. 

* • Starting " 



SCALE 1 INCH TO THE MILB 



Diagram ok GusTAvas Townsiim', TRiiMnarj, Coitntv, Oh 10, 
Showing Transimjutation Routks 



2^2 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

The average price per day per wagon is $1.25 and the length of 
the longest route is four and three quarter miles. 

During the school year 1 898-1 899 there were enrolled in the 
grades below the high school eighty-two boys and fifty-two girls ; 
in the high school room seventeen boys and thirty-five girls ; mak- 
ing a total in the building of 186 pupils. The average monthly 
enrollment for the entire school the past year was 163, while the 
average daily attendance was 77.4 per cent of the total enrollment. 
This is a fact of great significance. The children are regular and 
are getting the benefit of such a course.. 

Keep in mind that this school is not in a* village and the children 
are scattered over twenty-five square miles of territory. The chil- 
dren are not tardy. How do they do it? you ask. Well, they do it, 
and that is enough for me. Any one who stands in that building, and 
looks at those children and wagons, must be convinced that here is 
the solution of the country school problem, because this problem 
is being solved in the country over six miles from the nearest rail- 
road. There is an organ in every room, and the walls are being 
decorated with pictures. They have started a library. In the high 
school room were fifty-two enrolled, with fifty present. Here was an 
opportunity for the big boys on the farm to get higher education 
and still be at home evenings secure from the temptations and dis- 
sipations of city life. They rode home in the wagons with the 
children of the lower rooms, and thus were able to be of service on 
the farm. 

The building is a frame structure erected at a cost of $3,000. It 
is heated by steam. The principal gets $80 per month, while his 
assistants each receive $27.50. The wages of the assistants should 
be larger. The drivers receive respectively ^22, $30, $18, $25, $30, 
$32, $16, $30 and $17 per month, making an average of $1.25 per 
day. Before the adoption of the centralization the average daily 
attendance was 125 pupils. It has increased to 144 at the end of the 
second year, and the principal told us the attendance is increasing 
all the time. Before the schools were centralized the cost for the 
entire township was $2,900. Now it is $3,156, being an increase of 
only $256 annually. And as to the character of the school, who 
will claim that the nine scattered schools were doing the work of a 
well-graded four-room school? There is absolutely no comparison. 
In order to keep up the school and pay off the school bonds, the 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



^DO 



township board of education made a levy of nine mills on a valua- 
tion of $373,000. There was opposition to the plan at first. The 
people who were opposed simply took the ground that the thing 
had not been done and therefore could not be done. Just as there 
are always people opposed to any progress. When I was a boy 
sensible people said a man was a fool to think about binding grain 
by machinery. They were not ignorant ! they were simply mis- 
taken. So those who were opposed to centralization of schools 
frankly acknowledge their mistake and are found among the 
staunchest supporters. We have found this true every place we 
have visited. 

A special committee was sent from an adjoining county to in- 
vestigate the Gustavus school. The committee was composed of 
one person opposed to the system and one in favor. They traveled 
over the township and talked with the people as we did. In their 
report, out of fifty-four families interviewed only one person with 
children was opposed ; seven of those in favor were formerly 
strongly opposed, while none that were first in favor of the system 
are now opposed. The same committee adds: "Although the sys- 
tem costs a little more (the belief is that it is cheaper after building 
is paid for) yet the people as a whole are highly pleased and are 
very enthusiastic and proud of their schools. Several of the neigh- 
boring townships, after carefully watching the system, have decided 
to centralize, and the growing opinion is that centralization is in 
harmony with educational progress." 

The committee's report is certainly correct. Bear in miml the 
roads in this township are but a trifle, if any, better than the aver- 
age of Winnebago county. In fact, two or three townships of our 
county have, as a whole, better roads. The people are simply de- 
termined to have better schools and will not allow obstacles to re- 
main in the way of their children's fullest and freest development, 
even if it does cost a few hundred dollars more per year for the 
entire township. What would $i,ooo more per year on the $373,000 
valuation of Gustavus township amount to? The average tax-payer 
would not know it. The testimony has been that after the new 
school building has been paid for that there is an actual saving per 
capita of children of school age in the township. Then think of 
the superior value of the new school over the old. It cannot be a 
({uestion of a few hundred dollars. 



254 SCIIUUL lUll.DlXGS AND GKOL'NDS IN Ni:i!RASKA 

While we were at the Gustavus school the principal advised us to 
drive five miles to the west into Green township, where the people 
had centralized and put up a fine new brick building at a cost of 
over $6,000. The people of Green township had watched the school 
in Gustavus township for two years, and believed so thoroughly in 
the new plan that at the last April election voted to centralize and 
bond the township for a long term to erect a new building. The 
vote was overwhelmingly in favor of the new school. \\'e drove 
west to the center of Green township, which is five miles square. 
This township is eleven miles from one railroad and six miles from 
another. So it is distinctively rural. To be sure, there is the town 
hall, a post-office, a church or two, a country store and a few dwell- 
ings. That is Xew England brought to the Western Reserve. We 
all were enthusiastic over this building for country children. We 
never saw the like before in the country to take the place of mis- 
erable box-car, one-room structures. And the possibilities of such 
a school, who can measure it? [See illustration of Central School, 
Green township, Trumbull county, Ohio.] 

There are six schoolrooms, with two additional, one of which may 
serve as a library room and the other as an office and reception 
room. There is a basement under the entire building, part of which 
may be utilized for laboratory and gymnasium. The building is 
heated by steam. 

To this building are brought all the children of the entire town- 
ship. The educational influence of this building over that of eight or 
nine widely scattered, neglected district buildings is beyond con- 
troversy, to say nothing of the sanitary improvement in the way 
of seating, lighting, heating and ventilation. Such a building may 
be had in hundreds of townships of Illinois. It would not be a 
burden to the tax-payers of any township of Winnebago county. 
Bonds could be issued for thirty years' time, money could be bor- 
rowed at 4 per cent. The annual interest on $6,000 at 4 per cent 
would be $240, an amount no larger than the repairs on seven or 
eight district schoolhouses from year to year if kept up as they 
should be. One-thirtieth of the principal or $200 plus the annual 
interest, $240, would make a total cost of $440 for building pur- 
poses for the first year, decreasing every year afterwards as bonds 
are paid off. The total valuation of Owen township, according to the' 
Winnebago county Board of Review for 1900 is, real estate $253,- 




h 


1 


i 


r 


t 


f 


■ J 


t -• 


1 « 


.k 


■; 


■• 1 



^ 5>- ^ -,^ 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AXt) GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 257 

622, and personal, $310,038, making a total valuation of $563,660. 
An annual tax of $440 for such a central building as here shown, on 
a valuation such as the township of Owen has, is cheaper in the 
long run than under the present plan. 

They began this school in September last. Ihe enrollment is 
180, over 150 of last year in the scattered schools. Four teachers 
are employed. All the children of the township are brought to the 
school, and eight wagons are employed in the transportation. The 
campus has about three acres. Shade trees, school decoration, 
library, etc., will come. How that school can be made the social, 
literary and musical center of the entire township ! What an in- 
spiration it must be to a corps of teachers to work in such a com- 
munity as that ! 

In the primary room were all the little ones of the entire town- 
ship in a beautiful room, while in the high school room were many 
large farmer boys getting an education they could not otherwise 
obtain. On the playground all the big boys of the township play 
baseball. Think what it is to get all the boys of a township, country 
boys, I mean, on one playground. They will grow up a unity. 
Each boy, having studied and played with other boys of the entire 
township, will be stronger for it. When the football team or base- 
ball team or literary contests of Green township can compete with 
Gustavus townshij) on athletic ground or in town hall, each team 
will have the 1)acking of an enthusiastic township. In a great many 
districts there are hardly enough boys to play "two cornered cat." 
Can you wonder that children get tired of district school after a 
certain age? I am not sure that I have yet grasped the full signifi- 
cance of what we saw here. If that is good for Ohio boys, why not 
the same for Illinois? 

The day sjxMit at Gustavus and (irecn township scIiddIs was by 
far the best one in the Western Reserve. As far as educational 
matters are concerned it was far ahead of anything I had ever 
seen. 

We returned to yXshtabula, fully realizing that it was a good 
day, well worth our coming nearly 500 miles. I paid a visit to 
Thompson Center, Geaugua county. They did not have centraliza- 
tion, but the special district plan, a modification. It is not so goo<l 
as centralization, but nuich better than the old way. They now 
wish they had complete centralization as in other townships. JUit 



258 SCHOOL BUILDINGS ANDGROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

the special district plan was the best they could do then. Certain 
sections of the township were jealous of the other, and after the 
most determined opposition, those in favor of better schools at last, 
by a decree of the probate court, succeeded in getting two districts 
consolidated. A new schoolhouse was built ; a graded school was 
organized with three teachers; and the children transported them- 
selves. Now instead of nine small schools there are five on the 
special district plan. They expect to reduce the number. 

On my return from Thompson Center I stopped at a district 
schoolhouse where the school had not yet been centralized. It was 
a small building, with no shade trees in the yard. On entering the 
house I found a teacher and four pupils. There were no more in 
the district. I asked the teacher why this school was not central- 
ized. She replied that it w^ould be next year. The teacher was 
getting $30 a month to teach four pupils. She said that for the 
same money she would rather teach a room of thirty pupils in a 
graded school than to teach the four she had. Besides the possi- 
bility in the way of enrichment of country life which the centralized 
school promises, it also will bring better roads. 

At the Green township central school, where the new $6,000 
brick building has been erected, I asked a high school class how 
the roads were when they were bad. A young lady said they were 
real bad, w^hile a young man said they sometimes found it neces- 
sary to put four horses to the wagon. The principal said the peo- 
ple were preparing to improve the principal roads over which the 
wagons ran. Thus better schools bring better roads. 

On my return from Ohio I visited the Indianapolis schools, to 
learn about the new buildings and schoolroom decoration as de- 
scribed in School Sanitation and Decoration, a new book being 
studied by Winnebago county teachers. While there I spent half 
an hour with State Superintendent Jones, who informed me that 
centralization of district schools is going on in some parts of Indi- 
ana and proving satisfactory in the main. The township system 
prevails in this state, and the township trustee has power to close 
small schools and transport the children at public expense. Super- 
intendent Jones was busy digesting reports from all his county 
superintendents, with reference to the subject of centralization of 
county schools, thus getting matter together for his biennial re- 
port to the governor. 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



259 



But let us discuss the practicability of this system in Winnebago 
county, Illinois. There are 118 school districts in the county out- 
side of the city of Rockford. If we deduct from this number the 
six village and two suburban districts of the county there will re- 
main no one-room country schools. Out of these no districts, 
from reports of teachers on file in my office for the school year 1899- 
1900, there are five districts that had an enrollment of exactly ten 
pupils for the entire year; thirteen districts had an enrollment of 
fewer than ten (three of the thirteen having fewer than five pupils) ; 
while one school has been closed, there being only one pupil in the 
district. The cost per capita is very high in such cases, to say noth- 
ing of the character of the school. From the reports of township 
treasurers to me on September 15, 1900, I give the following from 
one of the representative townships of the county in which there is 
no village : 





Expendi- 
tures for 
year end- 
ing April 
1, 1930 


No in Dist. 

between 6 
and 21, June 

30, 19J0 


No. enro\'d 
in school 
for year 


No. months 
of school 


Salary of 

teacher per 

month 


District 1 


$ 378 53 
293 40 
314 75 
436 29 
321 15 
243 65 
194 80 


34 
26 
.33 
42 
47 
22 
51 


25 
21 
17 
28 
32 
12 
28 


8 

8 
9 
9 
9 

7 


$35 


District "2 


30 


District 3 


30 


District 4 


35 


District 8 


30 


District 9 


30 


District 10 


25 






Total 


$2182 57 


255 


163 


av. 8 


av.$30 



Several other townships have reports of the same general char- 
acter. From the above table will be seen that it costs $2,182.57 to 
educate 163 children (for none of this expenditure is for l)uilding 
purposes) a per capita of $13.39. O^ the 255 persons of school age 
only 163 arc in the district schools. A few may go to the Rockford 
high school or business college. It is not true that the most capable 
boys and girls are the children of pareiit.s of the most means, who 
are thus able to pay board and tuition at a distant high school, while 
the poor children can never hope for school education any better 
than the common country school affords. 

To quote from an article by "Taxpayer" in an Ohio paper of 
December 26, 1899: "We believe that in this age of steam and 



-''O sriiODL nriLDi xr.s ami iiroinds in nkp.raska 

(-■Icciricity. in which human ins^ennity and hiunan endurance are 
taxed to the utmost and in which the echtcational qualifications were 
never more imperatively demanded, that our hoys and g-irls of the 
country districts should have educational advantages as nearly 
equal with those of the hoys and girls of the city or special district 
schools as possihle. We do not believe that the centralized system 
is a great panacea that will cure all the ills with which our educa- 
tional system is afflicted, but w^e do believe it is an improvement 
over the old methods ; that it has advantages that will more than 
repay the expense and inconvenience incident to reorganization. If 
centralization is a good thing, we want it ; if it is not, we want to 
know why it is not. Because some one we know is in favor of it, 
or opposed to it, is not sufficient ground upon which either to ap- 
prove or condemn it. Let us investigate it thoroughly, study over it 
carefully and form conclusions slowdy; also, in forming our conclu- 
sions, let us be careful that we consider the merits and faults of the 
system of centralization, and that we do not approve or condemn it 
on account of merits and defects that do not arise out of centraliza- 
tion itself, but exist in the school system as a whole or arise from its 
sources." 

In such a spirit as the above we should discuss centralization in 
relation to the schools of Winnebago county. Xaturally one of the 
first considerations will be the condition of the roads for the trans- 
portation of pupils to the central schools. Two or three townships 
in \\'innebago county have as good if not better roads than those 
of Gustavus and Green townships, Ohio, where the experiment is a 
success. Centralization of schools and free delivery of mail are 
bringing better roads, which are needed by the farmer for many 
things. Under present conditions our farmers manage to get a 
load of milk to the factory over the w^orst of roads. The other day 
I saw a load of milk being drawn by three horses, while over the 
same road a little child was trudging through the cold and mud to 
the little old schoolhouse. The creamery was fitted up with im- 
proved machinery, w^hile the schoolroom was lacking in nearly 
everything that goes to make a school. Perhaps there is money in 
getting a load of milk to a central depot, wdiile there is no money in 
getting a load of children to a central school. There is where we 
are mistaken. Good roads and a central graded school will do more 
to keep our boys on the farm than any other agencies. To quote 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 261 

from a circular received today with reference to better roads : 
"Under the inspiration of the flag we love, and the matchless sys- 
tem of free popular education, the youth of the land have awakened 
to the possibilities that lie within them; they are restless and pulsat- 
ing- with energy ; they realize that this is an age of mighty possi- 
bilities, hence their intense desire to keep in touch with the outside 
and everchanging world. The youth of the farm dreams and longs 
for the intenser life of the city. He feels an almost irresistible 
desire to get closer to the nerve center. He is not content to be 
shut in mud-bound for weeks and months at a time. The great out- 
side world is calling him, and his nature answers the call. Country 
life demands and must speedily have free rural mail deliveries and 
the daily papers delivered on the date of publication ; it demands the 
telephone ; it demands above everything else a complete system of 
good, hard, every-day-in-the-year roads. They make country life 
better worth living, they broaden, educate and uplift this most im- 
portant branch of the commonwealth." 

With the free transportation of children our youtli can be edu- 
cated at home ; be at home of evenings and not on the streets of a 
distant city. What I have written above will not appeal to all. 
There are objectors and always will be. Progress is rarely along 
the path of the least resistance. The opponents of the movement 
in Ohio were very determined. But the successful operation of the 
system has won their approval. It is possible, I suppose, to travel 
over Illinois and find people who are opposed to better schools, espe- 
cially if it should cost a few cents more on the hundred dollars. It 
is possible to find people in Illinois who believe in 1(jw wages for 
the teachers, short school terms, with no library books or api>aratus 
in the schoolroom in order to keep down taxes. It is possibU- to 
find people in Illinois who don't care for the school because their 
children are gone. r>ut to the man, rich or poor, who has a family 
of growing children, living in a country district, far from a city, any 
reasonable proposition to better the educational facilities for bis 
children ought to receive from him a candid consideration. 

Such common-sense reasons as the following nnist appeal to tlu- 
great majority of the district school patrons of Wimiebago county 
and win their support to the centralization of scbools, tlie logical 
step to improved country school facilities : 

I. By centralization all the children of a township can be broiiglit 



262 SCHOOL CUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

together in one building-, and thus will result the inspiration that 
always comes from numbers. A school of seven or eight pupils is 
not calculated to stimulate a boy or girl to do the best work possible. 
With only one in a class there is no competition, that rivalry which 
calls forth all the powers of the child. By centralization strong 
classes can be formed and thoroughly graded as advancement is 
made. Such classes call forth the best efforts of the members. 
Such classification and gradation furnish longer recitation periods, 
thus giving the teacher more time for instruction. There will be 
uniformity of text-books, thus securing unity of study. 

2. By centralization there will be fewer but better teachers in our 
schools. It will be a case of the survival of the fittest. Better sal- 
aries will be paid those who do teach, thus enabling a person to 
make it possible to acquire a high school and normal training before 
attempting to teach. There is no inducement for a person to spend 
time and money in training when the only prospect ahead is a small 
school at a salary of $20 or $25 a month, for six or seven months of 
the year. Many directors want to hire a cheap teacher, as the school 
has only a few scholars and it costs too much to teach those few. 
When a person teaches for $25 per month, does his own janitor 
work, pays $10 or $12 per month. for board, the sum left at the end 
of each month is not such as w^ould induce a normal graduate to 
take up such a school. Of course a small school is expensive. Thus 
in one district in Harlem township the total expenditures for year 
ending April i, 1900, was $233.60. They had school seven months 
of the year and the total enrollment was 4. Thus the per capita cost 
for education on the enrollment was $58.40. A school in Burritt 
township for the same period had a total expenditure of $217.99 
for a seven months school with an enrollment of 8. The per capita 
in this instance is $27.25. A school in Pecatonica township had a 
total expenditure of $158.03 for seven months school, with an en- 
rollment of 6. The per capita is $26.34. A school in New Milford 
township had a total expenditure of $269.65 for eight months school, 
with an enrollment of 10. The per capita was $26.96. And so on 
for all the small schools of the county. Thus a premium is put on 
poorly prepared teachers who are willing to teach for $20 per month 
or less. Centralisation zvill decrease the cost per capita for educa- 
tion, give longer school years and furnish a more efficient teaching 
force at better salaries. These are facts that cannot be disputed. 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 263 

One more phase of the financial question. The following figures 
show the inequalities of taxation. One district levied $176 on a 
valuation of $38,835; another, $200 on a valuation of $31,422; a 
third, $230 on a valuation of $23,826; a fourth, $200 on a valuation 
of $64,250; a fifth, $250 on a valuation of $12,696; a sixth, $300 
on a valuation of $27,944; a seventh, $150 on a valuation of $11,- 
052; an eighth, $100 on a valuation of $32,154; and so on over the 
county.* Centralization of schools will equalize the cost of edu- 
cation. 

3. By centralization all the children of the township have the 
same chance for higher educational advantages, which under the 
present plan only five or ten per cent are able to get by leaving home 
and going to the city. With a central graded school and a high 
school course the children can be at home evenings under the care 
of their parents. The people of the country districts are entitled to 
receive the fullest benefits for money expended. Better means of 
education, better training, stronger characters ; the possibility of all 
these must appeaf to every parent and to every public-spirited citizen 
of any community. The course of study may be so enriched that all 
of the farmer boys may be taught some of the fundamental princi- 
ples of agriculture, horticulture, etc., without sending them away 
to a university to learn what may be learned at home. Such a town- 
ship high school, with good teachers, ought to be able to teach the 
boys and girls something about formation, composition and care of 
the soil ; feeding standards and selection of animals for the dairy ; 
rotation of crops; constituents of plants, and fruit growing. The 
State Farmers' Institute of Illinois has asked that the country school 
do something along this line. In obedience to their request, an ele- 
mentary course in agriculture has been added to the state course of 
study for the- common schools of Illinois. The farmers of Illinois 
are doing well in having a college of agriculture built up in connec- 
tion with our State University at Champaign. I'ut don't slop there. 
Let the influence of that work extend to every townshij) in the way 
of an enriched course of study in the townshiji union graded school, 
and one result will be that more boys and' girls will go to the univer- 
sity. The poor man who has been able to send his children only to 
ungraded district schools will have the pleasure of seeing his chil- 



* 1 he assessed valuation is probably nearer the real valuation in Illinois tlirin it is in 
Nebraska. 



264 sniooT, r.rii.niNGS and groitnds in Nebraska 

dren given the l)est education the township can afford, and that at a 
less per capita cost to his rich neighbor than heretofore. 

4. By centralization the health of the children is guarded. With 
transportation to a central school there are no wet feet and clothing 
and consequent sickness and impaired constitutions. Regularity and 
promptness of attendance are secured. These things do affect the 
character of children. The average daily attendance is so increased 
that as a result from 25 to 35 per cent more schooling is secured in 
a township at a decrease in the cost per capita. 

5. By centralization we go a long ways toward the solution of 
the problem, "How to Keep the Boys on the Farm." We bring to 
the farm that whicn he goes to the city and town to secure. Such a 
school may become the social and intellectual center of the com- 
munity life. With a library room, music, debating club, etc., our 
boys and girls wnll hesitate to leave home and such a school for the 
uncertainties of city life. 

And the centralization of country schools has a most vital rela- 
tion to the cities. It is just as important that there be good schools 
surrounding Rockford (or any other city) as it is that there be good 
crops or good roads. I can do no better than quote an excellent 
editorial from the Rockford Register-Ga::ette of December i, 1900, 
entitled 

A NEW' DAY FOR RURAL SCHOOLS 

"The city as w^ell as the country is interested in the new question 
of the consolidation of the country schools and the promotion of 
their efficiency as brought about by that policy. The changes brought 
about by the rural free mail delivery and the rural electric lines are 
radical, but they are not so important as this advance in the char- 
acter of the schooling offered to a larger part of the rural children. 

"The interest of the larger centers in this small revolution is self- 
evident. The city draws about half of its best men from the coun- 
try and is dependent on the country for their healthful constitu- 
tion, their character and a good start, including schooling. How 
many a young man has felt the handicap of having his boyhood for- 
tunes cast where a small school, an unfit or indifferent teacher and 
the lack of rivalry or emulation failed to arouse his interest and 
threw away his one opportunity. The merging of half a dozen or 
more inefficient country schools in one good one, with large attend- 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 2t>5 

ance, inviting schoolhouse and well systematized and graded work 
is a complete remedy for this drawback, in so far as good schooling- 
can remedy it, and both city and country will profit by the results. 
"The photographs obtained by Superintendent Kern of the school 
accommodations under the new order of things in Ohio and of the 
vans which convey the children to and from their homes are a dem- 
onstration to the eye which scarcely needs further arguiuent. The 
system has made such progress in ^ Massachusetts that it is now 
taken for granted. Illinois cannot afford to be behind in such a 
procession or to let time and opportunity run to waste. Let the 
young people and the children take it up, as well as the okler mem- 
bers of the community and hurry the matter forward. The legisla- 
ture has something to do in the premises. It were well if no time 
were permitted to lapse in that duty, too." 

N^ow if Ohio, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Massachusetts and .\ew 
Jersey can centralize and transport pu]Mls, wh\- nut Illinois? If it 
be important that the country boys and girls of those states be 
given the benefit of higher educational facilities, why not the \outh 
of this state have the same opportunities? justly have we prided 
ourselves in the past on the district school. Changing conditions of 
life, the demands of a higher civilization demand the evolution ol 
the district school, the peo])le's college, to the township graded school, 
the people's university. Such an evolution nuist come. The spirit 
of the twentieth century, tiie ins])iration of grander, nobler things in 
national thought and character urge us to make the most of our 
opportunities. There is not the faintest desire on my pari to force 
this system upon the people. I have not the power and would not 
exercise it if I had. There must l)e further legislatinn on the sub- 
ject in the state before any township can centralize, providing the 
l)eo])le are a unit in favor of the change. My <luly is to find belter 
methods, to inform you of them, yours to adopt or reject. I bo])e 
to confer with you in your scIkjoHiouscs about this subject during 
the coming months. The twentieth ccntm-y i)roblem in education is 
the evolution of the country schools (with all (be ])ossil)ililies in ibc 
way of the enrichment of country life), the better training of coun- 
try youth, the hope, the salvation of American deuKKracy. 



266 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEURASICA 



Tree-Planting Reserves for Nebraska 

United States Department of Agriculture, 

Bureau of Forestry. 
Washington, D. C, January lo, 1902. 

The investigation of Nebraska forest conditions by the Bureau 
of Forestry, begun early in the summer of 190 1, has been brought to 
a close. Much valuable information has been secured concerning 
the natural forests of the state, the rate of tree growth and the 
proper species for planting. The investigation covered principally 
the Platte river and its tributaries, the Pine Ridge district and the 
Sandhill region. The agents of the Bureau in making this exam- 
ination traversed more than forty counties. 

In the eastern part of the state and along the Platte river the nat- 
ural timber was studied with reference to its characer and tendency 
to extend its area. An examination was also made of the growth of 
planted timber both on bottom and upland soil. Special attention 
was paid to the rate of growth, reproduction and extension of area 
of the timber in Scotts Bluff, Sioux, Dawes and other northwest 
counties. In the Sandhill region the purpose of the investigation 
was to determine the general adaptability to timber growth. 

As a result of the investigation the Bureau oflficials are satisfied 
that if the proper species are selected, the growling of forest trees in 
Nebraska can be made a paying investment, especially in the eastern 
part of the state and along the streams in other parts. 

The agents of the Bureau of Forestry have found that the nat- 
ural forests of the state tend to extend over new areas rapidly when 
protected from fire and grazing. This is as true of the pine in the 
western part of the state as it is of the deciduous timber in the east- 
em section. 

It was also found that the rate of growth of the young natural 
timber in the western half of the state is fairly rapid. This was al- 
ready known in regard to the timber in the eastern part of the state, 
but the recent investigation determined this fact for the pine in the 
western section. Many measurements of young trees of 10 to 12 
inches diameter in Scotts Bluff, Banner, Sioux, Dawes, Sheridan 
and Cherry counties showed an average annual diameter in growth 




'FOR THE SAKE OF A LITTLE CHILD' 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 269 

of one-sixth to one-quarter inch — a rate fully equal to that of the 
same species in the Black Hills. 

The officials of the Bureau are convinced that the Sandhills can 
be forested, and made to produce valuable timber. The tendency 
of the Sandhills to increase in woody growth is regarded by all who 
have studied them as strong evidence of their adaptability to timber. 
Natural timber has been found growing on them in a number of 
places. For example, both pine and cedar are growing in typical 
Sandhills along the Niobrara river; and wherever the growth is 
protected from fire and stock it increases in area year by year. At 
other points in the hills, even remote from streams, clumps of both 
pine and hackberry have been found. In addition to this, experi- 
mental plantations of pine in the Sandhills have grown with great 
vigor, during recent years. 

The forestation of the Sandhills has seemed so feasible, to those 
who have studied the question, that for several years a proposition 
for the National Government to reserve large areas in the Sandhill 
region for forest planting has been gaining many advocates. This 
plan is supported by many of the public men of Nebraska, including 
the Governor, the United States Senators and Representatives from 
that state and members of the faculty of the State University, and 
at an early date it will be laid before the Secretary of the Interior. 
So thoroughly has the Bureau of Forestry become convinced of the 
practicability of foresting the Sandhills, that it is aiding the efforts 
to secure the setting aside of a tree-planting reserve in that region. 

To ascertain whether public land fs available for the proposed 
reserves, the Bureau has collected data from the different land of- 
fices of the state for the preparation of a map showing the exact 
area and location of the vacant land. This map will Ix: of great 
value in locating the reserve. 

The movement for a tree-planting reserve in the Sandhills is gen- 
erally approved by the people of Nebraska. If the reserve is estab- 
lished, early preparation will be made for planting on such n ^r.dc 
as will be of great benefit to the entire state. 

In any event the results obtained in this investigation will be ol 
great value in determining future plans for the improvement of the 
forest conditions of the plains region. 



270 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AxND GKOUiNUS IN NEBRASKA 



Statistical Tables 

TABLE I 

SCHOOI.H0USES IN NEBRASKA 





NO. OF 














YEAR 


SCHOOL 
DISTRICTS 


WOOD 


BRICK 


STONE 


LOG 


SOD 


TOTAL 


1869.... 


377 

797 












74 


1870.... 


196 


16 


6 


80 


3 


301 


1873.... 


1863 


848 


46 


30 


138 


76 


1138 


1878 .... 


2690 
3271 
3834 












2231 


1881 .... 












2930 


1884.... 


2772 


92 


29 


122 


338 


a353 


1886.... 


4667 


3438 


176 


66 


220 


367 


4267 


1890.... 


6243 
6417 


4e55 
4932 


235 
242 


45 
31 


210 
184 




5937 


1891.... 


496 


5885 


1892.... 


6510 
6630 


5159 
5317 




39 
35 


188 
146 


528 
734 


6234 


1893... 


267 


6499 


1894 .... 


6641 


5385 


294 


31 


151 


732 


6593 


1895.... 


.6693 


5520 


293 


36 


140 


698 


6687 


1896.... 


6731 


5544 


298 


29 


159 


690 


6720 


1897.... 


6741 


5580 


302 


32 


159 


622 


6695 


1898.... 


6703 


5606 


304 


36 


137 


593 


6676 


1899.... 


6705 


5704 


313 


.33 


141 


517 


*6710 


1900.... 


6708 


5760 


312 


42 


112 


505 


t6733 


1901 . . . . 


6674 


5831 


320 


25 


132 


464 


J6773 



* Includes 1 iron and 1 baled straw. 



f Includes 2 iron. 



J Includes 1 iron. 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



271 



TABLE II 
DISTRICTS, SCHOOLHOUSES, TEXT-BOOKS, APPARATUS, TAX, 1901 







SCHOOLHOUSES 


m 


g 


in oj 












- 










NUMBER AND MATERIAL 




C^ i2 




^ 


•§S 













a%0 


■Si 
■^ be 






COUNTY 














0^ 




3 i- 


s 

u 


ii 







^ 


T3 



"5 





0. we 
nisliec 
appar< 
maps, 
etc. 


6ll 


^11 


•sS 




z 


Ui 


m 


03 


^ 


tn 


H 


2 


^ 


2 


< 


2 


Totals... 


6674 


5831 


320 


25 


132 


464 


*6773 


188 


4849 


5944 


15 


900952 
Av. 135 


Adams 


80 

112 

39 

9 

79 


79 

110 

14 

2 

74 


10 
3 








89 

113 

30 

8 

79 


4 
4 

"2 
2 


75 
90 
13 
6 
70 


79 

100 

13 

9 

76 


13 

18 
lu 
18 
16 


13618 


Antelope . . . 
Banner .... 








15976 




14 


2 
6 

1 


1699 


Blaine 






86^ 


Boone 


4 






11722 


Box Butte . . 


62 


18 


2 




3 


32 


55 


3 


42 


54 


15 


5852 


Boyd 


68 


46 






1 


12 


59 


14 


36 


62 


22 


7371 


Brown 


41 


32 


2 




7 


3 


44 


5 


5 


40 


16 


4270 


Buffalo 


119 


123 


10 








134 


1 


68 


92 


18 


18274 


Burt 


69 

93 

100 


67 
92 
97 


5 

2 

15 








72 

94 

113 


'"2 


43 
94 
70 


62 

88 
88 


10 

15 

9 


10214 


Butler 








14409 


Cass 


1 






16743 


Cedar 


79 
59 


93 
30 


2 








95 
46 


1 


70 
30 


71 
46 


16 
17 


13151 


Chase 






15 


5017 


Cherry 


97 


40 




1 


5 


10 


57 


5 


30 


68 


15 


7026 


Cheyenne . . 


96 


32 




6 


6 


21 


65 




25 


71 


20 


6844 


Clay 

Colfax 


78 
61 
78 
250 
38 
92 


85 
63 
74 
141 
36 
45 


2 
9 








87 
64 
78 
244 
40 
70 


3 

2 

"i9 


70 
40 
73 
200 
38 
30 


77 
61 
65 
200 
38 
70 


15 
10 
12 
22 
12 
12 


13190 








9976 


Cuming 

Custer . . . 








12;i35 






101 


29198 


Dakota . . . 


4 
3 






6117 


Dawes 




19 


3 


6425 


Dawson 


90 


102 


5 






4 


111 


4 


85 


70 


20 


12878 


Deuel 


60 
81 
83 
62 
59 


25 

79 
84 
71 
40 








24 


49 
81 
96 
110 
47 


2 
1 
5 
2 


36 
60 
69 
110 
30 


53 
78 
67 
62 
40 


16 
15 
15 
6 
13 


4421 


Dixon 


2 
12 
39 

1 






11740 


Dodge 

Douglas . . . 
Dundy 








142(;.3 








1088;} 






6 


5(K;(5 


Fillmore . . . 


91 
71 


92 
69 


2 

1 








94 

71 




75 
60 


91 
60 


14 

18 


Mi»7S 


Franklin. . . 






1 


10215 


Frontier . . . 


109 


90 









15 


107 


3 


50 


88 


2] 


13ns 


Furnas 


101 


95 


4 


1 






100 


2 


72 


95 


15 


1.3975 


Gage 


154 


150 


13 


1 






164 


1 


149 


152 


12 


24401 


Garfield 


24 

62 

6 

55 


9 
59 

4 
55 








i3 

3 
3 

1 


22 

62 

7 
57 


2 
.... 

4 


15 

53 

5 

46 


22 

56 

4 

56 


14 

18 

7 

17 


2332 


Gosper 

Grant 








8;i.50 








851 


Greeley 


1 






8351 


Hall 


72 
98 
80 
71 


73 

100 

79 

23 


6 
2 

3 








79 

102 

82 

48 


.... 

1 

2 


21 
50 
75 

m 


72 
JM) 
80 
45 


14 
18 
16 
11 


11713 


Hamilton . . 








15539 


Harlan .... 








11 !.-,() 


Hayes 


1 




24 


51 SI 


Hitchcock . 


77 


51 


3 




1 


20 


75 




no 


77 


16 


SI 79 


Holt 


194 


175 


3 






8 


186 


4 


150 


183 


19 


20971 


Hooker 


3 


3 










3 




:{ 


:'. 


li. 


401 



* Includes one iron schoolhousc. 



2^2 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

TABLE \l— Continued 





i 

•3 




SCHOOLHOUSES 


« 1 

II 

Wo 

|0.O 


0;;:; 
$° 

^"^^ 
< 


<n a 




NUMBER AND MATERIAL 1 


V 


- P3.a 


•a 


COUNTY 


a 

n 
u 


'C 

n 


a 



3 



'Ji 






Howard 

JefEerson . . . 
Johnson . . . 
Kearney . . . 

Keith 

Keya Paha. 
Kimball . . . 


70 

100 
79 
69 
44 
56 
18 

107 

136 

107 
15 
22 
78 
10 
56 
63 
81 
91 

100 
76 
70 
76 
66 
78 
71 
82 

101 
59 

117 
40 

113 
32 
91 

105 
70 
30 
54 
97 
6 
23 
60 
56 
80 
79 
33 

102 


68 

104 

76 

68 

37 

23 

13 

121 

141 

103 

4 

13 

78 


2 
4 
2 
2 
1 


1 






71 

108 

79 

70 

44 

55 

15 

124 

157 

127 

*15 

21 

87 

6 

64 

64 

83 

93 

108 

78 

56 

77 

75 

84 

71 

85 

108 

60 

123 

44 

118 

20 

98 

93 

70 

23 

54 

102 

6 

27 

61 

63 

81 

83 

27 

106 


2 

1 
4 
1 

'"*6 

4 

2 

•3 

2 
2 
2 
3 

""2 
1 
2 
2 
5 
1 
3 
5 
1 
6 
1 
1 
1 

'"4 

2 

*5 

2 

'"2 
1 

"3 
3 
1 


48 
50 
60 
51 
40 
26 
15 
66 
148 

t 
8 
12 
53 
3 
30 
30 
60 
20 

101 
65 
42 
56 
65 
73 
54 
78 

108 
51 
98 
44 

104 
15 
86 
65 
61 
14 
54 
60 
5 
27 
45 
56 
76 
35 


70 
100 
79 
69 
44 
46 
16 
107 
134 
107 
15 
17 
62 
3 
56 
63 
68 
78 
54 
76 
54 
74 
65 
75 
70 
83 
74 
51 
114 
42 
99 
15 
65 
78 
63 
11 
54 
96 
5 
23 
62 
53 
74 
78 
25 
97 


16 
13 
12 
18 
17 
18 
17 
16 
11 
20 
18 
19 
14 
12 
13 
16 
10 
16 

8 

10 
16 
18 

9 
11 
16 
21 
11 
17 
16 
11 
13 
14 
11 
15 
18 
17 
13 
14 
23 
22 
17 
11 
13 
16 
17 
15 


10397 
15718 


1 






11875 






10s70 




'23 


6 
9 
2 


4435 
5068 
1961 


Knox 


2 
16 

1 




1 


14767 
22751 


Lincoln 

Logan 

Loup 






22 
10 

8 


12143 

1612 








1914 


9 






12018 


McPherson . 






6 


683 




61 
64 
69 
87 
89 
72 
43 
72 
72 
78 
70 
68 
97 
47 

114 
38 

114 
10 
96 
43 
63 
12 
53 
97 
3 

26 
56 
58 
81 
80 
25 

103 


3 






9023 










9986 


Nemaha . . . 
Nuckolls. . . 

Otoe 

Pawnee 

Perkins 

Phelps 


12 
5 

18 
3 
1 
2 
3 
6 
1 
4 
9 

"9 

4 
4 
1 
2 
3 
1 

"i 

4 


2 
1 
1 
3 




'i2 
3 


12470 
14064 
16760 
12298 
4384 
11093 
10255 


Platte 








12609 


Polk 








10926 


Red Willow 
Richardson 

Rock 

Saline 

Sarpy 

Saunders . . . 
Scotts BluflF 

Seward 

Sheridan . . . 
Sherman. . . 

Sioux 

Stanton .... 

Thayer 

Thomas 

Thurston . . 

Valley 

Washington 

Wayne 

Webster . . . 
Wheeler . . . 
York 


"i 


ii 


13 

1 
2 


9948 
15545 

5300 
17946 


1 






6722 
18810 


1 


3 


5 


2429 
15135 




23 

"ii 


24 
6 


9172 
9012 
2572 
8116 






■'3 


14595 
759 


1 
3 
5 






3032 






2 


8772 
9463 








12674 


3 








11847 






2 


2959 


3 









79 


16644 



• Includes one iron schoolhouse. 
fNo report. 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



273 



TABLE ni 

SMALIv SCHOOLS IN NEBRASKA 

A detailed statement of the number and distribution of the small rural schools 

in Nebraska 

THE problem: wanted— a solution 



COUNTY 



Adams . . . . 
Antelope. . 
Banner . . . 
Blaine . . . . 
Boone . . . . 
Box Butte. 

Boyd 

Brown 

Buffalo . . . 

Burt 

Butler 

Cass 

Cedar 

Chase 

Cherry . . . , 
Cheyenne 

Clay 

Colfax . . . . 
Cuming. . , 
Custer . . . . 
Dakota . . , 
Dawes . . . , 
Dawson . . 

Deuel 

Dixon . . . . 

Dodge 

Douglas . 
Dundy . . . 
Fillmore . 
Franklin . 
Frontier . 

Furnas 

Gage 

Garfitld.. 
Gosper ... 

Grant 

Greeley . . 
Hall ..... 
Hamilton 
Harlan . . 
Hayes . . . , 
Hitchcock 

Holt 

Hooker . . 
Howard . . 





ATTENDANCE 


ATTENDANCE 


ATTENDANCE 


OF 5 PUPILS 


ABOVE 5 BUT 


ABOVK 10 BUT 


ABOVE l.i BU r 


NOT MORE 


NOT MORE 


NOT MORE 




THAN 10 


THAN 15 


THAN 20 


1 


7 


It 


22 


9 


27 


35 


20 


9 


7 


4 





2 


4 


2 


1 


2 


18 


25 


13 


12 


25 


13 


2 


1 


12 


19 


16 


3 


17 


11 


1 


6 


18 


44 


26 


1 


10 


22 


20 


2 


11 


16 


32 


2 


20 


25 


22 


5 


14 


16 


14 


11 


22 


9 


2 


5 


26 


14 


8 


25 


27 


16 


5 


2 


3 


21 


21 


2 


2 


12 


20 


1 


10 


20 


20 


19 


82 


70 


35 





4 


17 


4 


15 


26 


13 


6 


6 


14 


23 


15 


15 


24 


7 


5 


1 


21 


19 


24 





7 


29 


21 


1 


4 


14 


9 


8 


19 


10 


5 


1 


11 


17 


19 


7 


20 


14 


1 


6 


30 


33 


24 


2 


16 


39 


21 


3 


22 


55 


37 


2 


11 


5 


3 


4 


15 


19 


10 





3 


1 





6 


19 


15 


5 


2 


6 


20 


11 


2 


11 


33 


20 


2 


21 


24 


16 


9 


15 


13 


9 


11 


34 


16 


6 


58 


66 


29 


14 


1 





1 





1 


12 


15 


20 



-'74 Sl'HOor, BUILDINGS AND C.ROl'NDS IN NF:r.RASKA 

TABLE III— Coil United 



Jefferson ... 
Johnson . . . , 
Kearney ... 

Keith 

Keya Paha. 
Kimball . . . . 

Knox 

Lancaster . . 
Lincoln .... 

Logan 

Loup 

Madison ... 
McPherson . 

Merrick 

Nance 

Nemaha ... 
Nuckolls . . . 

Otoe 

Pawnee .... 
Perkins . . . . , 

i helps , 

Pierce 

Platte 

Polk 

Red Willow 
Richardson 

Rock 

Saline 

Sarpy 

Saunders 

Scotts Bluff 

Seward . 

Sheridan . . . 
Sherman . . . 

Sioux 

Stanton 

Thayer 

Thomas .... 
Thurston . . . 

Valley 

Washington 
Wayne .... 
Webster . . . 
Wheeler . . . 
York 

Totals. 



ATTENDANCE 

OF 5 PUPILS 

OR LESS 



2 



20 
5 
7 
6 
5 

17 
2 
1 

2 
4 
6 

5 
4 
3 

31 
3 
2 
5 

9 
1 

10 
1 
1 

3 
2 

18 
5 
4 
2 
4 


2 

1 


12 
1 



4t9 



ATTKNDANCE 

ABOVE 5 BUT 

NOT MORE 

THAN 10 



16 
10 

7 
15 
24 

4 
22 

6 
30 

3 

9 
14 

2 

8 
18 

7 
19 
19 

6 
14 

7 
16 

8 

6 
23 
10 
21 
11 

4 

8 

5 
14 
39 
21 

9 

13 
13 



5 
18 

4 
19 
11 

8 
13 



1352 



ATTENDANCE 

ABOVE 10. BUT 

NOT MORE 

THAN 15 



30 
23 
22 

4 
16 

1 
34 
32 
25 

6 

4 
20 

2 

13 
21 
25 
19 
34 
21 

4 
30 
22 
22 
18 
18 
24 
13 
32 

7 
19 

3 
32 
18 
21 

5 
15 
27 



4 
20 

9 

30 
25 

4 
24 



1687 



ATTENDANCE 

ABOVE 15 BUT 

NOT MORE 

THAN 20 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 275 

These statistics are taken from the annual reports of the count}- superintend- 
ents of Nebraska for the school year 1900-1901. They show that the small 
schools are greater in number than most of us knew. There are 489 schools 
with an average daily attendance of five or less; 1,841 with ten or less; 3,528 
with fifteen or less; 4,771 with twenty or less. There are about 6,300 strictly 
rural school districts in Nebraska. This makes nearly three-fourths of our rural 
schools in each of which is an average daily attendance too small for vigorous, 
interesting and profitable work, either educationally and socially or financially. 
No time need be spent in rehearsing these facts. No school can claim condi- 
tions for good work if it have less than twenty-five pupils; yet there are 4,771 
rural schools in Nebras.ca in operation with an average daily attendance rang- 
ing from one to twenty pupils. I believe we are all ready to unite upon this 
proposition — the pupils in these small rural schools must be collected into 
larger and better schools with better teachers, better paid. " It does not mat- 
ter how much we deplore the condition which makes consolidation of schools 
necessary, the fact remains that it is the only rational solution of the question 
that has been offered." 

WILLIAM K. FOWLER, 

State Superintendettt. 
Lincoln, Nebr., December 31, 1901. 



^yCi SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 



References — Publications 

SCHOOL ARCHITECTURE. By Edmund M. Wheelwright. 
Rogers & IManson, Boston. Size, 7^ by 103^ ins. 350 pp. 250 
illus. 1901. Price, $5 delivered. 

In 1898-1900 there appeared in The Brickbuilder a series of papers 
on "The American Schoolhoiise," by Edmund M. Wheelwright. 
The success of these papers suggested the publication of this book, 
in which the original material has been recast and the scope of the 
sdbject has been greatly wndened. 

Many American schools not considered in the original papers are 
illustrated and described, but the work is especially enriched from 
foreign sources. Examples are presented of the most typical and 
practically suggestive schools of Germany, Austria, Switzerland, 
the Scandinavian countries, England and France, the subject being 
more comprehensively treated than in any book heretofore pub- 
lished. All details of school construction are considered, yet the 
information is studiously condensed within the limits of a convenient 
handbook, which is made readily accessible by an unusually full 
index. 

MODERN AMERICAN SCHOOL BUILDINGS. By Warren 
Richard Briggs. John Wiley & Sons, New York. 412 pp. 89 full 
page illus. 1899. 

SCHOOL SANITATION AND DECORATION. By Burrage 
and Bailey. D. C. Heath & Co., Chicago. 192 pp. 88 illus. 1899. 
$1.20 postpaid. 

SCHOOL HYGIENE. By Edward R. Shaw. The Macmillan 
Co., Chicago. 260 pp. 1901. 

PHYSICAL CULTURE. By B. F. Johnson. B. F. Johnson 
Publishing Co., Richmond, Va. 137 pp. 1900. 

SCHOOL INTERESTS AND DUTIES. By Robert M. King. 
The American Book Co., Chicago. 336 pp. 1894. This book con- 
tains, among other things, one chapter on School Architecture and 
another on School Hygiene. 

RECENT SCHOOL ARCHITECTURE. Selected Reprints 
from the Annual Reports of Charles R. Skinner, State Superin- 
tendent of Public Instruction, New York. 1897. 



SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 277 

REPORT OF A VISIT TO THE CENTRALIZED SCHOOLS 
OF OHIO. October, 1900. By O. J. Kern, County Superintendent, 
Rockforcl, Winnebago County, Illinois. 

CONSOLIDATION OF DISTRICTS AND TRANSPORTA- 
TION OF CHILDREN, Chapter II of the Biennial Report of the 
Superintendent of Public Instruction of the State of Iowa. 1901. 

RURAL SCHOOL ARCHITECTURE. State of Minnesota, 
Department of Public Instruction. 1900.' 

SKETCHES, DESIGNS AND PLANS FOR SCHOOL 
BUILDINGS, SCHOOL YARDS AND OUTHOUSES. State 
Superintendent of Public Schools, State of Maine. 1897. 

SANITARY CONDITIONS FOR SCHOOLHOUSES. By 
Albert P. Marble, Worcester, Mass. Bureau of Education, Wash- 
ington, D. C. 1 89 1. 

BIENNIAL REPORT OF THE COUNTY SUPERINTEN- 
DENT OF SCHOOLS, COOK COUNTY, ILLINOIS. By Supt. 
Orville T. Bright, Biennium ended June 30, 1900. 

THE CONSOLIDATION OF COUNTRY SCHOOLS, AND 
THE TRANSPORTING OF THE SCHOLARS BY USE OF 
VANS. Bulletin No. 71, Department of Agriculture, Common- 
wealth of Pennsylvania. Harrisburg, 1901. 

DESIGNS FOR SCHOOLHOUSES, accepted by the Depart- 
ment of Public Instruction of the State of New York. Charles R. 
.Skinner, State Superintendent. Albany, 1895. 

TREE PLANTING ON RURAL SCHOOL GROUNDS, 
(Farmers' Bulletin No. 134) by Wm. L. Hall, Asst. Supt. of Tree 
Planting, Bureau of Forestry, U. S. Dept. of Agriculture, Wash- 
ington, D. C. $0.00. 

HINTS ON RURAL SCHOOL GROUNDS, by L. H. Bailey, 
Bulletin No. 160 (January, 1899) of the Cornell University Agri- 
cultural Experiment Station, Horticultural Division, Ithaca, N. Y. 
$0.00. 

BEAUTIFY THE SCHOOL GROUNDS, The Youth's Com- 
panion. $0.00. 

IDEAL PUBLIC SCHOOLS, The Youth's Companion. $0.00. 

HOW TO SET OUT TREES AND SHRUBBERY. The 
Youth's Companion. $0.00, 



2^8 SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS IN NEBRASKA 

HOW TO ENJOY PICTURES. By M. S. Emery. With a spec- 
ial chapter on pictures in the schoolroom, by Stella Skinner. The 
Pranof Educational Co., Chicago. 1898. $1.50. 

THE \ENTH.ATION AND WARxAHNG OF SCHOOL 
BUILDINGS. By Gilbert B. Morrison. Volume IV of the Interna- 
tional Education Series edited by Dr. William T. Harris, U. S. Com- 
missioner of Education, Washington, D. C. D. Appleton & Co., 
New York. 1901. $1.00. 

HAND-BOOK OF SANITARY INFORMATION FOR 
HOUSEHOLDERS. By Roger S. Tracy, M. D. D. Appleton & 
Co., New York, 1900. 

LECTURES ON SCHOOL HYGIENE. Ginn & Co., Chicago. 
1886. 

SANITARY DUSTLESS FLOOR BRUSH, manufactured in 
Milwaukee, Wis., is a valuable aid in schoolroom sanitation. 



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