Pella Chronicle

Days Gone By

May 20, 2010

Looking back at the one room school

Collins Perry twp. sec. 6

Pella —  

The Collins country school was in the far northwest corner of Marion county.  The district was bordered on the west by Polk county and on the north by Jasper county.  A log cabin served as the first school.  This was replaced by a frame structure which later burned down.  A third building was erected southeast of the one that burned down.  It was also a frame building with a bell tower.  That building was sold after the school closed.

In the list of teachers you will note the name of Nannie Hyatt, a long term teacher who began her career in country schools.  She taught in Marion and Guthrie counties for a total of 51 years, retiring from teaching in 1935.  She was born Sept. 6, 1864, and died July 25, 1955.  Oh, what stories she could tell us!

The picture of the West and Clark children and their mothers appeared in the June 14, 1937 edition of the Knoxville Journal.  At the time the West family had 11 children while the Clark family had 8.  In addition to the children pictured the West's other children were Billy (19),  Donna (17), Betty (15), and Jackie (4).  The two other Clark children not pictured were Donald (16), and Marion (19).  Not all of these children were enrolled at the same time.  The catchy header above the picture reads "An Entire School--Just Two Families",  The reporter entirely missed the fact that there were also students from other families attending this school in 1937.  The Clark and West families do illustrate why there was a need for so many country schools in an earlier era.

Teachers included Molly McCoy 1886, Mary E. Clark, Ola Fairley 1898, Maude Inskeep, Hattie Huckaby 1899-1900, Clara Langebartels, Elsie Daly, Hattie Huckaby 1901,  Clara Langebartels, Mary C. Clark 1902,  Lizzie Snyder, Mattie Rankin, Aipha Reeves 1903, Lizzie McKinney, Jessie Clark, Mary Clark 1904,  Lizzie Snyder, Bess Van Gorp 1905, Katherine Finnessy 1906,  Nannie Hyatt, Katherine Finnessy 1907,  Nannie Hyatt, Edna L. Lusk, Eunice Kutz 1908, Mable Bush, Edna Spires , Edna Lusk 1909, Mary C. Clark, Edna Spires 1910, Mary C. Clark, Jessie Warner 1911, Mary Clark, Olivia Hollister, Mary Entler 1912, Lois Richards 1913,  Lois Richards, Walter P. Heisel, Forest Moore, Jessie B. Kinsell 1914,  Mrs. Hazel Cooper, Ida Fenningkeit 1915,  Bernice Ramsey, Hazel Cooper 1916, Bernice Ramsey, Lydia Hughes 1917,  Lydia Hughes, Olive Freeman, Evelyn Ash 1918,  Lola White 1919,  Alice Conner 1920,  Elsie Daly, Jessie Rogers 1924,  Mary Hunt 1925, Elsie Daly 1926, Frankie Carter 1928,  Thelma McCoy 1929,  Stella Danks 1930,  Geneva Young 1931,  Adeline Herweh 1933-34,  Miss Pauline Ingle 1935,  Ernest Klinker 1936,  Bethine Wilson 1937, Gretchen Robinson 1938,  Mollie P. O'Berg 1939,  Pauline Heaberlin 1940, Mary L. Turner 1941,  Mrs. Frances Freeman 1943-45. 

Please continue to contact me with information about the Marion county rural schools. 641- 628-4716 or

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Days Gone By
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