1820, according to the recollection of the oldest inhabitants,
all the schools held in Pickaway county were sustained entirely
by subscription, and the only branches taught were reading,
writing and arithmetic. The school-houses, even in
Circleville, were log houses of a single room. These were
made comfortable by seaming the cracks with tempered clay, and
light, by pasting oiled paper over the latticing in the window
holes, cut through the unhewn logs. Slabs, on the rude
legs, supplied sittings, and other slabs along the walls,
supported on pins fixed at a proper slope in the logs, beneath
the windows, were the convenient "writing benches" of that day.
Dillworth's spellers, readers and arithmetic, were
among the first text books used here, unchanged from before the
adoption of our federal currency. The first reading classes
began with the New Testament. The introduction, later, of
Webster's speller and the Columbian orator, helped greatly
to a more definite grading of classes. Lindley MURRAY's
works afterwards gave an impetus to improved teaching.
Johnson HUNTER, was a successful
teacher of this earlier time, down to 1818. He taught in a
log house, of the kind described, just south of the resent
market space. In another similar building, not far south
of the present High street building, Hans HAMILTON
kept school. Hugh Hannagan is spoken of as a teacher of
excellent parts, but as often painstakingly too freely of the
"liquid Hospitality" of the country.
Marked improvements in the schools took place after
1820, when teachers of a superior class, and of professional
pride, were employed. Of these, we name Hon. Joseph
OLDS, Dr. Edson B. OLDS, Dr. M. BROWN and Hon. J. C.
No common schools, entirely free,
can be said to have been established here until after the
passage of the school law of 1838. Soon after, the Little
academy was built by the district. It stood beside the
Circleville academy, the best private school here at that time,
or afterwards, and consisted of a single room. By the boys
who went to the pay-school, it was mockingly denominated the
"kitchen school." Pine desks ran around the walls, behind
which, raised a step or two above the floor, sat the larger
scholars, while the little ones were seated on benches ranged in
front upon the floor, and facing the middle of the room.
Other district schools were held in rooms about town wherever
they could be had.
Till 1849, male teachers were
mainly employed, at about twenty dollars a month. The
county examiners tested them by law, only in the three R's, but
added their qualifications in other branches if they desired to
teach them. For such extra teaching the scholars were
required to pay.
There were three directors elected by the people.
George GEARHART, of whom mention will again be made, was
a director from 1838 to 1849. The school funds were
derived from the State school tax creating a State fund of two
hundred thousand dollars; from township school lands, and from
interest on proceeds of "section sixteen." No special
provision was made for the books or tuition of indigent pupils.
The charity of the benevolent afforded some help of this kind.
Judge H. N. HEDGES, George GEARHART, esq., and the
Ohio Common School Director, conducted in 1838, by Hon.
Samuel LEWIS, first State school commissioner, are the
sources of the facts narrated under this topic.
[This account of the early schools of Circleville is so
meagre that the editors feel bound to add the few facts they
have been able to glean in regard to them.
In the Circleville Herald and Ohio Olive Branch,
bearing date Sept. 11, 1830, we find the advertisement of a
"female seminary," taught by the Misses STREETER, who
having rented two rooms in Mr. McCRACKEN's brick row of
buildings, and fitted up the same, were prepared to teach all
the branches usually taught in female schools. The terms
of tuition were certainly sufficiently moderate, varying from
two to four dollars per quarter.
The facilities for obtaining an education must have
been ample in those early times; for we find that, eight years
later, when Atwater's History of Ohio was published, the town of
Circleville contained (as stated in that work) "four churches
and about twelve schools - one or two, for young ladies,
deserving great praise, and receiving it."
Ten years later, that is, in the spring of 1848, Mr.
C. C. NEIBLING, a native of Lancaster, Ohio, came to this
place and opened a select school for boys only, under patronage
of some of the best citizens of the town. His school
consisted of about forty scholars, the maximum number that he
would receive. His charges were four dollars per scholar,
for each quarter of sixty days, payable in advance. The
enterprise continued to flourish very successfully for about
four years, or until the union schools were inaugurated.
The free system soon taught the professor that his "occupation
was gone," and he therefore left the profession and went into
other business. He was a good mathematician, a laborious
teacher, and very pains-taking with his pupils. As a
consequence, his school achieved a high degree of success.
He still resides in Circleville, and is now the city engineer.
In an old paper of 1850 we find an advertisement of the
"Circleville female seminary," taught by Benjamin M. LUDDEN
and wife, with three other teachers. These were succeeded,
in the same year, by the Rev. W. S. SPAULDING and wife,
with two other teachers.
In the same paper of about a year later, we find a
notice of a select school taught by Lucy M. ATWATER, who
was afterward associated in the same school with R. A.
We are painfully aware that this is a very
imperfect showing of the early educational history of
Circleville; but it is all we can find room for, and, at the same
time, insert as we desire to do, the full and complete history
of the graded schools which follows. - EDS]
On Sept. 11, 1849, John CRADLEBAUGH, S. A. MOORE,
Joseph G. DODDRIDGE, Jacob RUTTER, Chester OLDS, and seen
others, issued a call to the qualified electors of the town of
Circleville to assemble on the 22d prox. and "then and there to
vote, by ballot, for or against the adoption of an act for the
better regulation of the public schools, etc., passed by the
general assembly of Ohio on the twenty-first of Feb., 1840."
Ninety-seven ballots were cast on the day designated, of which
"eighty-seven were for school law, nine against school law, and
one blank;" whereupon the act of assembly aforesaid was declared
adopted by the town of Circleville.
On the fourth day of October following, six directors
of public schools in this district until such time as the board
of directors can procure or build a suitable house to
accommodate the scholars."
During the two or three months succeeding the passage
of this resolution, a somewhat sharp division of views seems to
have arisen, in and out of the board, as to whether it were
better to erect a small school-house in each ward, suitable to
accommodate its scholars, or to "erect one school-house in this
district of sufficient size and capacity to accommodate all the
children of the town." Finally, it was decided to hold a
meeting of the people at the court hose, Mar. 18, 1850, to
decide by ballot "for or against levying a tax to build a
schoolhouse." Three hundred and eighty votes were polled;
one hundred and sixty were for tax and two hundred and twenty
against tax, being the majority of sixty against the tax.
This result, so far as the writer has been able to ascertain,
did not spring at all from opposition to taxation for the
support of free schools, but entirely from opposition to the
evident purpose of the board to build but one house in a central
location. It was deemed by the stronger party
impracticable, in not absurd, to attempt to gather six to eight
hundred children into one edifice for daily instruction.
So many could not be profitably and healthfully provided for
under one roof, nor could there be efficient government of such
masses on the school grounds. Other reasons, no doubt, of
a local nature, operated to strengthen the popularity of the
decentralizing policy of the opposition.
Determined in their original purpose, the board now
took measures to enlighten the people on this question. In
May, of the same year, William C. Taylor and
George GEARHART were selected by the board to visit
Massillon, Akron, Cincinnati, and other towns and cities, for
the purpose of "examining school-houses, and any and all matters
connected therewith." Besides, Dr. D. A. LORD, then
superintendent of the union schools of Columbus, was invited to
address the citizens of Circleville, at the Lutheran Church, on
education and the organization of public schools under the law
Messrs. TAYLOR and GEARHART returned from
their tour of the cities full of enthusiasm in behalf of the
union school-house plan, and armed with facts and figures which
wrought a speedy change in the public mind. Again, on the
tenth of June, 1850, an election was held at the court house to
decide "the levying of a tax of nine thousand dollars, to be
called for as follows, to-wit: three thousand dollars in
one year, three thousand dollars in two years, and three
thousand dollars in three years, to enable the board of
education to purchase ground and build a school-house."
The motion before the board, calling for such vote, further
proposed that, in the event of an approving vote, "Messrs.
W. W. BIERCE and George GEARHART should be a
committee to purchase of the heirs of E. EVERTS their
out-lot (known as EVERTSs' Hall) at a price not to exceed
eight hundred dollars, and also of John IRWIN and widow
DARST portions of their in-lots, adjoining said out-lots,
for an entrance to the same.
The result of the election was very gratifying to the
enlightened and public-spirited men, who, for nearly a year, had
used every honorable endeavor to establish in Circleville as
excellent a system of graded public schools as existed anywhere
in the State. A majority of one hundred and seventeen
votes decided in favor of levying the tax. The EVERTS
property was promptly secured of O. E. NILES and
others (heirs of E. EVERTS), and also the in-lots alluded
A commemorative word should be added with regard to
this EVERTS' Hill property. Mr. E. EVERTS
was, for many years before this period, an earnest and
successful school teacher of this district. In a log house
of two rooms, an upper and a lower, standing near the old oak
just east of the present EVERTS building, he held a
popular school. Many of our older citizens bear grateful
testimony to the unwavering zeal he showed in behalf of the
establishment in Circleville and throughout the State of a
graded public school system, supported liberally by direct tax,
and free to all of school age in each district. Though
this property was not large, yet he determined, if such a system
could be established in his day, to donate this hill property to
the town as a site. His views were in advance of his time.
In his will, this out-lot of nearly four acres was to be sold by
the heirs to the school district, if devoted forever to
educational purposes, for the nominal sum of one thousand
dollars. The heirs, in the true spirit of the testator,
offered it to the board for eight hundred dollars, though at the
time it would have yielded several thousands in town lots.
Besides the sum of nine thousand dollars provided for
by tax, the treasurer of the board, Col. S. A. MOORE,
reported having received, up to Jan. 14, 1851, from district and
township treasurers, and from State school fund, in full, one
thousand four hundred and sixty-one dollars.
Early in Jan, 1851, Messrs. William C. TAYLOR
and Stanley COOK submitted a plan for a school-house "to
be known by the name of Union school-house," which was
unanimously adopted. Contracts were at once made (as far
as practicable, with the mechanics of Pickaway county) for the
material and building of the Union school-house, and Thomas
PEDRICK was appointed superintendent to oversee its
The old district school-house, called the Little
academy, standing beside the Circleville academy, near what is
now Watt street, between Court and Pickaway, was sold, with all
its appurtenances, at auction. Still further funds were
raised by increasing the annual levy beyond the amount necessary
to meet the regular expenditures for schools when opened, and by
the issue of bonds payable after certain dates, with interest at
from eight to ten per cent.
The building moved rapidly forward to completion, and
was ready for occupancy in November, 1852.
I transcribe from the Ohio Journal of Education
for 1853 the following account of this new edifice. The
notice in the Journal is accompanied with an excellent
full-page cut of the building and grounds:
"THE CIRCLEVILLE UNION SCHOOL-HOUSE.
"This building, which
is pleasantly situated on a lot of four acres, is ninety-six
feet long by sixty-nine feet wide. It is three stories
high above the basement, and contains fifteen school-rooms.
Connected with each room is a closet, which is furnished with a
wash-stand, looking glass, combs, and all the paraphernalia of a
"Neat and commodious apartments are fitted up in the
basement for the residence of the janitor.
"Two of Chilson's No. 6 furnaces are placed in the
basement, which afford ample means for heating the house.
In each hall is a large cooler, which is constantly supplied
with fresh water. We noticed, among other things, on
looking over a neat pamphlet of sixteen pages, giving a very
clear account of the organization or this promising pages,
giving a very clear account of the organization of this
promising school, that a janitor is employed, who has entire
charge of the furnaces, keeping the rooms clean, providing
water, ringing the bell, etc. This is as it should be.
It is the poorest kind of economy to compel teachers or scholars
to make fires and sweep the school-rooms, though no better
arrangement can be expected till the plan of erecting large
building is adopted.
"The cost of the house and grounds, when the latter is
ornamented, will be about thirty thousand dollars."
Three of the lower rooms were furnished with long pine
benches, divided into what are known as box seats; the boxes
constituting the partitions between scholars along the settee,
and serving as deposits for books and slates. The
remaining rooms - as many as were needed at first, nine in
number - were supplied with double desks of walnut, the best of
the day. The lower middle room on the first floor was used
as an exercise room for the primaries, especially in unpleasant
weather. The middle room of the third floor was used for
morning exercises, and was long denominated the chapel.
The school revenues were derived from the State
common-school fund, from interest on school-lands, and "section
sixteen," from foreign tuition fund, and from an annual tax
levied each year on the school district, and called special
Besides the names given as signers of the call to adopt
for Circleville the law of the 1849, there are several others
worthy of honorable mention, because of their activity in
securing the adoption of the union-school system, and in
consummating this movement by the completion of the noble
edifice described, and by the admirable organization of schools
adopted as soon as the rooms were thrown open to the scholars of
District No. three. Such a list must at least include
William C. TAYLOR, first president of the board; Col. S.
A. MOORE, first treasurer; W. W. BIERCE, George GEARHART,
George W. MYERS, and Dr. Wayne GRISWOLD, president of
the board for four years from 1850.
At a meeting of the school board held in May, 1852,
Messrs. GRISWOLD, BIERCE and MOORE were appointed a
committee to secure, by correspondence or visitation, a
superintendent and other teachers to take charge of the public
schools. This committee reported at the August meeting
that they had visited Cincinnati, Columbus, and other places,
had attended the teachers' convention at Sandusky, and that they
felt full confidence in reporting the name of John LYNCH,
of Ashland, as one well qualified to act as superintendent of
the Circleville public schools. The report was accepted,
and John LYNCH was unanimously chosen as a principal and
said schools, at one thousand dollars per annum.
It was resolved on this occasion "that the teachers to
be employed in the union school shall be one superintendent,
with one male assistant and eleven female assistants; and that
in the selection of teachers by this board preference shall be
given, other qualifications being equal, to those who intend to
make the business of teaching a permanent employment." A
board of examiners was also appointed, consisting of John
LYNCH, Chauncey N. OLDS, and H. N. BISHOP.
The schools were opened on the 22d of November,
1852, with the twelve assistant teachers.
In October, Mr. LYNCH, by direction of the
board, prepared and reported a system of rules for the
government of the schools, course of study, and a list of
text-books. These regulations, but slightly modified, and
with a few additions, remain in force to this day.
III. GROWTH OF THE SYSTEM.
herewith, in tabular form, the more important statistics as for
as they can now be obtained by diligent research, of the first
year of the schools, ending June, 1853; of the third year,
ending June, 1855, when the system had been thoroughly tested
under Mr. LYNCH's superior management, and of every tenth
|Number of pupiles enumerated
|Number of pupils enrolled
|Average daily attendance
|Number of teachers
|Number of school rooms
|Number of grades or departments
|Number of weeks in session
|Amounts paid teaches
|Value of school property
The public schools
reached at once a marked degree of popularity, which they have
steadily maintained. The public schools reached at once a
marked degree of popularity, which they have steadily
maintained. The Circleville academy and all other private
schools were closed in 1852. They have never been
re-opened, nor have other pay schools gained foothold since.
All classes, without distinction of politics, religion, or
wealth, have freely patronized the public schools, and fostered
them by the election of directors who have labored wisely and
disinterestedly in the discharge of their responsible trust.
IV. IMPROVEMENT OF THE SYSTEM.
Before the close of
Mr. LYNCH's supervision, beginning Latin and algebra were
introduced into the ninth year of the A Grammar grade, and
under Mr. BARNEY, United States history became a required
study in the eighth year, and physical geography in the ninth.
In 1873, superintendent SMART removed the Latin of senior
grammar to first year of high school. AT this time, the
sexes were seated in different rooms in the high school and
Several changes in the course of study and text-books
were effected during the administration of Mr. SMART.
He had a text-book on English grammar first begun in the
junior instead of the senior grammar, and language lessons in
the grades below. MITCHELL's geographies were
supplanted by the eclectic series; oral geography took the place
of the introductory book in the primary grade, and the text-book
was begun in the intermediate, to be completed in the grammar.
Oral instruction in numbers was substituted in the first three
years for RAY's earlier book, and RAY's
intellectual and third part begun respectively in the fourth and
The quadrennial report, in reference to music, issued
by C. S. SMART, in 1874, says: "In 1870, the board
employed a special teacher of music, who, each week, gave a
lesson of one hour to each room of the departments above the
primary. Thus music continued to be taught in each white
school. It was considered an optional study, and about one
text-book was used from the intermediate through the ninth year.
"The rudiments of penmanship," says the quadrennial
report, "are taught in the lowest grades by the use of slates
and pencils. Copy-books, pens and ink are not used until
the last term of the fourth year. The teachers are
required to give instruction each day as it is needed."
On the opening of the new High street building, under
the supervision of M. H. Lewis, in teh spring of 1875,
the secondaries were increased from four to six, the
primaries from three to six, and, at the close of the school
year, the primaries were increased to eight, and the ninth
year of the senior grammar became the first year of the high
school, while the sexes heretofore separate, were seated in the
same rooms in teh grammar and high school grades.
During the same period (since Feb., 1875), the word and
phonic method was adopted for beginners in the lowest primary.
Very much less was made, through the three lower departments, of
oral and concert spelling, and more of written spelling and
individual drill. Each scholar was required to keep lists
of his misspelled words and undergo a drill upon them at the
close of the week. The use of McGuffey's speller was
dropped from the fourth year to the eighth, and the spelling of
all words used, in reader and other recitations, in every grade,
required, and examinations held upon them.
Music was also placed upon a different footing in the
fall of 1875. The single bulky and ungraded volume
formerly in use was superseded by Jepson's graded music
readers, the first book being introduced in the fourth year.
Oral instruction was begun in the first year. The study
was made obligatory in all except the grammar grades, and
lessons of from fifteen to twenty minutes each were give daily
by the special and regular teachers, alternately. The same
plan was carried out in the colored as in the white schools.
In the third term of 1875, a special teacher in writing
was employed. Slate writing, with ruled lines, was begun
in the first term of the first year, followed, in the next, by
lead pencil writing. The copy -book was begun in the
second year, and pen and ink, with advanced copy-books, in the
third year. The special and regular teachers alternate in
charge of classes in both white and colored schools. It
has added greatly to the efficiency of the school, in this
branch, that about the same time with these changes, the board
determined to supply the common schools with slate and lead
pencils, pen-holders and pens, and exercise paper.
Except the German, adopted as an elective study in the
last two years of high school, taught by the regular teachers,
no facilities were afforded for the pursuit of this language by
the large number of pupils of German parentage or extraction in
the schools. The fall term of 1875 opened with ample
provision made for the study of German in the ten upper schools,
beginning with the junior secondaries. A special teacher -
la lady of German parentage, thoroughly educated - gives daily
instruction to all in these schools whose parents wish them to
take German in addition to the regular English course. The
school exercises are so arranged that the German teacher can
have her classes in the several rooms during the general study
hour. Over two hundred scholars are now (December, 1875,)
under such instruction.
It is worthy of remark, that successive examinations
evidence no falling off in the scholarship of those who pursue
this additional study, while there has been a marked gain in
facility of expression and quickness of parts.
Examinations of pupils of all grades during M. Lynch's
supervision were conducted by him orally, at the close of each
term. These examinations, in connection with the average
of daily recitations, determined the advancement of the pupils.
Mr. Barney continued these oral examinations, but under
the charge of several teachers, and made them occasions of
special public interest, on which great numbers attended to
witness the exercises. These tests, averaged with the
daily records, fixed the success or failure of pupils.
until 1872, semi-yearly examinations, partly oral and
partly written, of the several classes of the common schools
were held by Mr. Smart. From 1872, on to the close
of this administration, in January, 1875, written examinations
for the purpose of reclassification were conducted by the
teachers in all the rooms above the primary grades, at the close
of each term. Except for the high school, all the
questions for the classes were made out by the superintendent.
Each scholar wrote out the answers, on paper of his own
furnishing, with lead pencil. The teacher examined and
passed upon the papers, which were then folded and sent to the
superintendent's office. Advancement was then based upon
the general average made up from the daily class markings, the
examinations and the department. Monthly examinations for
trial were held at the option of the teachers, who furnished
their own questions, and took no pains to preserve the papers.
Since the spring term of 1875, Mr. Lewis has
made monthly examinations, written with pen and ink upon uniform
paper, furnished by the board, obligatory on all the scholars
above the third year of the primary grades, including the high
school. The questions are all made out in the office of
the superintendent, and handed to treachers on the day of
examination. The fall term opens in teh common schools
with a hurried review of the previous year's work. They
are then pressed on in advance work, upon which monthly or six
weeks' tests are taken until the close of the second term, when
a public examination takes place. For a searching
inspection of this public test of all the schools, together with
the modes of recitation held for the four or six weeks
previously, special committees of capable citizens, interested
in school work, are appointed by the board. During the
third term the monthly examinations are kept up, and, at the
final one, the test covers the year's progress. Promotions
are then based upon the average of all the examinations of the
No note is now made of the daily recitations, the
incentive of the coming examination being a sufficient spur to
steady daily progress, while the teacher, uninterrupted before
the class, is free to severely sift the knowledge gained, to
amplify and illustrate the points not clearly comprehended, and
to block out the ensuing tasks. The papers, faced with the
questions, properly labeled, neatly bound, and with all the
answers graded in the margin, are sent to the superintendent's
office for final revision, together with a report in full of
each scholar's per cents, in the several studies, and his
average in all.
In regard to the times of promotion, Mr. Smart
says: "The nearest approach I have been able to make to such a
classification as will accommodate the greatest number, without
making the manipulation of classes too cumbrous, has been to
reclassify three times in the year, and to promote, at any time,
pupils whom, on examination, I found prepared."
Mr. Lewis, on finding that these term
promotions were, for several reasons, with so limited a corps of
teachers, thwarting rather than accomplishing the objects for
which graded schools were organized, returned to speedily as
possible to the custom of yearly promotions, except for the
first two or three years. The increased number of
primaries enabled him to make his exception without disturbing
the classification in the grades above. Honorable
promotion of scholars who outstrip their fellows, and trial
promotions of the large number of irregulars, made such by
field-work or sickness, bridge quite safely all the difficulties
of exceptional cases in grading.
Improvements in school accommodations, buildings, etc.,
have been made since 1853. The original building named the
"Everts," in the spring of 1875, contains now sixteen
school-rooms, with sittings for eight hundred and fifty pupils,
the laboratory, and superintendent's office. It has been
furnished throughout since June, 1875, with the best single
desks. The school board has, of late years, added
liberally, as needed, new and improved apparatus and chemical
In 1871, the board completed the Ohio street building,
for colored pupils, at a cost of seven thousand dollars.
It is a fine brick structure, with ample hall and two rooms.
There are sittings for one hundred and fifty pupils. The
rooms are furnished with excellent double desks, with charts,
globes, and wall maps. The site commands a wide sweep of
the Scioto valley and river.
In the spring of 1875, the High street building was
completed and furnished with single desks, giving three hundred
and fifty sittings. The edifice is architecturally
beautiful, tastefully, yet substantially, finished in every
part, and pleasantly located. It has a large entrance
hall, from which the six school-rooms are easy of access; three
of these opening upon the first floor and three upon the second.
Three hot-air furnaces heat the rooms comfortably in the coldest
weather, while the Reutan mode of ventilation, on the exhaust
principle, keeps the atmosphere perfectly healthful. The
total expenditure on this building and surroundings has been
upwards of twenty-five thousand dollars.
William Doane, esq., treasurer of the board for
fourteen years past, and chairman of the committee on buildings,
furnished the design of these recent structures and supervised
V. ORGANIZATION OF THE HIGH SCHOOL.
The high school was
organized at the same time with the union school, Nov. 22, 1852.
Few changes of importance have been made in the course
of study planned by Mr. Lynch and adopted by the board of
education in 1852. The four years' course of the high
school includes the following studies: Algebra,
physiology, zoology, botany, geometry, natural philosophy,
chemistry, rhetoric, English, Greek, and Latin history,
trigonometry, physical geography, astronomy, geology, English
literature, mental and moral science, political economy, Latin,
Greek, German, and French.
About twenty pupils have gone from this school to
college, although many more than that number have been
adequately prepared. The first class graduated in 1858.
There were five in the class. Sixteen classes have since
graduated, with an aggregate of one hundred and twenty-nine
members. Twenty-three of these were young gentlemen, and
one hundred and six young ladies. The number of scholars
in the high school in 1855 was eighty-six; in 1865,
eighty-three, and in the fall term of 1875, eighty-nine.
The changes made in conditions of admission will be found stated
at length under the fourth topic.
The following are the high school principals, and term
of service since the organization of the school:
|E. M. Cotton
|John P. Patterson
|D. N. Kinsman
|J. M. Atwater
|O. C. Atwater
|Milton J. Warner
|Charles F. Krimmel
|James H. Clendennin
|P. M. Cartmell
It is impossible to
gauge precisely the usefulness of the high school in this
community. It has materially and beneficially affected all
classes of society.
Representatives of these seventeen classes are found in
the college chair, in the pres, in the learned professions, in
the counting-house, in the great railway interests, in the navy,
in the army, in our State legislature, and at the head of
schools at home and abroad. Twenty-four, at least, of the
graduates, have been successful teachers in our public schools,
of whom fourteen are still connected with them in the various
grades. Besides these classes, in estimating the full
usefulness and appreciation of the Circleville high school,
large account must be made, also, of the four hundred to five
hundred others, who, during the twenty-three years of its
existence, have enjoyed one or more years of its advanced
instruction and superior training, and have then gone forth and
become citizens of influence and culture in this and other
first superintendent, was elected at the opening of the union
school, in the fall of 1852, and, after ten years' service,
resigned to enter the army in June, 1862. Of his very
successful organization and management of the schools, much in
detail has been given under the second topic.
Hon. H. H. Barney, who, as State school
commissioner, has been deservedly popular, succeeded Mr.
Lynch in September, 1862, and continued in office seven
years. He resigned in 1869, withdrawing altogether from
the cares of any avocation to that studious ease which the
weight of years and his cultured tastes made desirable.
Our citizen still speak with regret of the loss of this
scholarly gentleman and honored citizen.
Mr. C. S. Smart followed Mr. Barney in
January, 1869, and resigned after six years' service, in
January, 1865, having been elected State school commissioner in
October previous. He was engaged at a salary of one
thousand four hundred dollars, which was raised to one thousand
eight hundred dollars at the close of the school year.
Under "Improvement of the System," mention has been made of the
changes introduced by him.
In February, 1875, M. H. Lewis entered upon the
duties of superintendent, at a salary of one thousand eight
hundred dollars. Under the appropriate topic, the changes
made through his recommendations in classification and course of
study have been specified.
Teachers' meetings have been held weekly, or as
occasion required, since 1852. Mr. Lynch, for a
time, had all meet at the chapel at half past seven o'clock each
Saturday morning, and continue in a kind of normal institute
session until half past eleven o'clock. Later, and still,
the general teachers' meetings take place at three o'clock,
afternoon, on Friday. The several superintendents have
used this hour for counsel, criticism, and general direction.
Since February, 1875, it has been the practice of the
superintendent to hold general teachers' meetings only as
necessary, once in two or three weeks, while two or three
special or grade meetings are convened each week. In
these, modes of instruction, government, and special cases are
At the close of 1875 the public schools are arranged as
follows: I, The high school, taught by three teachers and
divided into four regular classes. 2, The common school,
with four departments of two grades each, and twenty rooms.
3, The colored school, with two rooms and two teachers.
Three special teachers of music, penmanship, and
German, complete the corps of twenty-eight teachers.
We append the names of the members of the board of
education and instruction for the year 1878-79: S. B. Evans,
president; G. F. Wittich, secretary; William Doane,
treasure; George Deavenport, S. A. Moore, James
Board of instruction for 1878-9; M. H. Lewis, A.
M., superintendent; high school, E. W. Mitchell,
Bertha V. Farr, Rosa Hess; A grammar, Lydia A. George;
B. grammar, Ella C. Drum, Maggie A. Lewis; C. grammar,
Alice Pedrick, Mary J. MacMullin; D grammar, Ida Peebles,
Mary C. Beachtel, Flora Littleton; A primary, Anna Myers,
Anna L. Sain; B primary, Mary B. Sheridan, Lizzie
Atkinson; C primary, Mrs. Maggie Scott, Clara
Littleton; D primary, Ida Catner, Sallie Moran, Alice
Morrow, Julietta Smith, Jennie Hedges, Delilah Anderson;
colored schools, Alex. D. Delany, Maggie E. Crawford, Sallie
E. Vaughn; music, T. H. Wittich; penmanship, Harp