Kendall County Country & Village Schools
Schools in Big Grove Township
See Fourth Ward School.
Big Grove School
In 1835-6 a Congregational Church was built in the center of Big Grove in Big Grove Township and was also used as a school. The church/school was erected at the northeast corner of Apakesha Grove near Anthony Litsey's home on two acres donated by Mr. Litsey. Pioneers contributed logs and slabs for the building and Abraham Holderman donated the nails. The logs used in its construction were good-sized round ones, but smoothed with the broad axe on the inside. Both the floor and seats were made of puncheons, and at each corner of the north end was a fireplace and chimney. The building was about 24x32 feet, and one-story high. There were three large windows; one located on the north, east, and west sides, each containing two sashes. They were arranged so they would slide past each other when ventilation was needed. The hardwood entrance door was at the south end. The door was hung on wooden hinges, and fastened with wooden latches made out of hickory, the latches were raised by pulling on a buckskin string fastened to the latch, and passed up and through a hole in the door to the outside. About six feet was partitioned off from the south end of the building for a cloakroom and a place to leave lunches. In addition to the seats, downward sloping boards were attached to the walls and used as writing desks. The building was furnished with a walnut table for the teacher.
Earl Adams was the first and George T. Norton the second teacher of the Big Grove School. Male teachers taught the three "R's" and were paid from eight to twelve dollars per month plus their room and board. The latter were obtained by what was called, boarding around. Women teachers were sometimes paid as little as one dollar a week.
The rules of the school were very strict and a hickory switch, 3 to 3 1/2 feet long, twisted at the top to make it stiffer was used to enforced discipline. Writing was practiced on foolscap paper with quill pens. Ink was made by boiling soft maple bark for two hours, and adding copperas to set the color.
Fern Dell School
The Fern Dell School was opened in 1839 and the original building was replaced with a new building in 1892. The school was located in the northeast quarter of section 18 Big Grove Township at the intersection of Fern Dell and Fennel Roads. This school was also known as Edgerton School and Neff School. Fern Dell School closed in the spring of 1951.
The building built in 1892 was moved to Newark, renovated and placed on a new foundation. It is located across the road from the Newark grade and high school and owned by the Fern Dell School Association.
Fourth Ward School
In 1838, a log schoolhouse was built on the Lisbon-Big Grove Township line. The first building was located in section 18 of Lisbon Township on Reuben Hurd's farm.
In 1857 a new schoolhouse was built on land owned by Samuel K. Avery in section 13 Big Grove Township. This school was known as Bushnell School before it was renamed Fourth Ward School. The school was located in the northeast quarter of section 13 Big Grove Township at the northwest corner of the intersection of Bushnell School and Lisbon Roads.
The Fowler Institute was a private school of higher education built at Newark in 1855. The building was a three-story building about 40 by 50 feet in dimension and was paid for by subscriptions. It had two large classrooms and a recitation room. The building was destroyed by fire in the fall of 1880 and not rebuilt.
Lisbon Lutheran Parochial
The Lisbon Evangelical Lutheran Church (Norwegian) parochial school began about 1845. It is unknown to the compiler where the first sessions were held but the church building was probably used as a classroom. In 1858 or 1859 a building was built for a schoolhouse. In addition to the classroom, the building had an apartment in the rear to house the teacher and his family. In 1893 the congregation voted to require every confirmed member of the church to financially support the school. In 1896 the congregation purchased ten acres of land to provide a place to build a home for the teacher. The Norwegian parochial school continued until it was closed in 1919. With the closing of the parochial school, school age children of the members of the congregation began attending public schools.
The Naden School was first opened on the edge of Big Grove. It was moved to its permanent location in about 1851. The school was located in the northeast quarter of section 11 Big Grove Township on Lisbon Center Road. Doug Devick is now using the school building as a garage or shop.
Newark Village Schools
Mr. Sloan who lived in Gridley's Grove taught the first school in the vicinity of Georgetown, then Newark, in about 1833-1834. About the same time Mr. Neese opened a school over George Hollenback's store.
During the summer of 1837 a Precinct house was built to hold public meetings and provide a place to vote. It was a crude 16 by 24 feet frame building on Asa Manchester's farm a short distance from Nathaniel Pease Barnard, Sr.'s home. The building was also used as a schoolhouse for pupils living in Newark and vicinity. Miss Dianatha Gleason was the first teacher. In 1849 this building was damaged by fire. James Harvey who had taught there repaired the building and it continued to be used as a school until 1853.
In 1853 a new one-story public schoolhouse was built in Newark. This served the needs of the students for several years. In 1868 a new and larger two-story frame schoolhouse was built to accommodate a growing number of students. The old schoolhouse, built in 1853, was for many years used as storeroom for Fritt's furniture store.
In 1896 a new four-room schoolhouse was built. The new school provided space for both grade and high school. The first Newark High School class graduated in 1900.
The school in the Scofield School district succeeded the old log church that stood near the school. The Scofield School was built in 1847 and painted red. For the next thirty years the building was also used for spelling schools, caucuses, a polling place, exhibitions, lectures, shows, church services, prayer meetings, Sunday School and social gatherings. Such uses were fairly typical for all of the early schoolhouses. Because of its exterior color this school was also known as the Red School.
In 1876 the old red schoolhouse was sold for a township hall and new building constructed at a cost of $1,200. The Scofield School was located in the southwest part of the northwest quarter of section 22 Big Grove Township at the intersection of Apakesha and Townhouse Roads.
The Scott School was built in 1849 or 1850. Like many early schools the furniture in the first school was quite primitive. The seats were rough boards or hewn logs and the teacher's table rested on crossed pieces of wood. The first schoolhouse was painted sky blue and for years was known as the Blue School. It was also known as the Rasmussen School.
In 1874 Mr. Scott bought the farm near the schoolhouse and its name was changed to Scott School. In 1876 the building was remodeled, enlarged and equipped with new furniture. The Scott School was located in the northwest quarter of section 35 Big Grove Township at the southwest corner of the intersection of Whitewillow and Scott School Roads.
The Sleezer School was started in a log schoolhouse covered with shakes in about 1849. In 1856, a residence was bought and moved to the corner of the lot where the log schoolhouse was located. In 1876 the schoolhouse was rebuilt and moved to its permanent site. The school was located in the southeast quarter of section 4 Big Grove Township near the southeast corner of Newark and Sleezer Roads. The Sleezer School was also known as the Havenhill School.
The Stephens School was opened in 1845 and was also known as the Hoge School and Holderman School. The school was located in the southeast quarter of section 29 Big Grove Township at the northeast corner of the intersection of Stephens and Whitewillow Roads.
Schools in Bristol Township
The first Boomer School was built in 1843. A new and better schoolhouse was built in 1855. The Boomer School was located in the northwest quarter of section 21 Bristol Township. It was located on Boomer Road that at one time went straight north from the curve on Illinois Route 47 near Kennedy Road to Cannonball Road.
The Bertram School was located at the northeast corner of the intersection of US Route 30 and Bertram Road. The school is located in Kane County but directly across Base Line Road (US Route 30) from Kendall County. Many of the pupils who attended the Bertram School lived in Kendall County. The Bertram School was closed in 1949 and has been converted into a residence.
Early schools in Bristol were private schools where students paid tuition to attend. The first school may have been held in the original Congregational Church building on River Street.
In 1837 a frame schoolhouse was built near Deacon Johnson's home in Bristol. In 1839 the school was moved nearer the river. Later the school was held in various buildings and the original schoolhouse was moved toward Oswego.
The next school in the village of Bristol was opened in 1844 in a small brick building on the corner of Bristol Avenue and Somonauk Street. The first teacher was Rhoda Godard. Later the building was used as a blacksmith shop. Still later it was moved farther north and became part of Jacob Wheeler's residence. There was an extended period when there was no schoolhouse and school was held wherever a room could be found.
Sometime in the early 1850s the residents of Bristol decided to build the village's first real schoolhouse. A two-story wood frame building was built between 1850 and 1854 on the northwest corner of Spring and Liberty Streets.
In 1882 the voters of Bristol and Yorkville voted to consolidate their two school districts. In 1887 the central part of the building now known as Parkview School was built to replace the dilapidated wooden structures in Bristol and Yorkville. The new school was dedicated January 2,1888 and served as grade and high school for both communities. At this time the two wooden schools were closed. The south side school on the northeast corner of Madison and Adams Street was destroyed by fire June 2, 1889. The Bristol schoolhouse stood unused for many years. Eventually it was converted to a home and is currently occupied as a residence.
Bristol Station Schools
George "Graham" Hunt taught the first school in Bristol Station, in a small and dilapidated building on North Street in 1856 and 1857. Chauncey Hunt and E. H. Booth erected a permanent two-story frame schoolhouse in 1858-1859 on the northwest corner of Ridge and Plum Streets. The school site is across the road from Saint Patrick's Catholic Church. During the early eighteen sixties the Methodists and Congregationalists of Bristol Station held church services and Sunday Schools in the schoolhouse on alternate Sundays.
The Gorton School was formerly named Stebbins School. The Stebbins School was opened about 1840 in a log building. A cement building replaced the log schoolhouse in 1851. In 1866 a new frame schoolhouse was erected. The school was located in the southwest quarter of section 11 Bristol Township near the intersection of Kennedy and Mill Roads. The Gorton School was closed in the spring of 1943 and is currently being used as a residence.
The Keck School or Young School was opened in 1846. A new building was erected in the fall of 1873. The school was located in the northeast quarter of section 1 Bristol Township on Illinois Route 30 about a half-mile west of the intersection of Route 30 and Cannonball Road.
The Raymond School was opened in a room in Galusha Stebbin's house during the early eighteen forties. The first schoolhouse was erected in 1845 on the Raymond farm. The schoolhouse was burned while Gilbert B. Lester was teaching there. He moved the school to his brother-in-law, Reuben Hunt's house, at Bristol Station. The next school was held in Lyman Childs' farmhouse where his daughter held school. In 1855 Joseph Palmer built a new schoolhouse. The Raymond School was located in the southwest quarter of section 5 Bristol Township on Galena Road about three quarters of a mile west of Illinois Route 47. This school was also known as the Windett School. The school is currently being used as a residence.
The Rickard School was built in 1842 on a bluff commanding a beautiful view of the Fox River. The school was located in the southwest quarter of section 23 Bristol Township on the south side of US Route 34 a short distance west of Bristol Ridge Road.
The Stebbins School was opened about 1840 in a log building. A cement building replaced the log schoolhouse in 1851. In 1866 a new frame schoolhouse was erected and the name changed to Gorton School.
See Keck School.
Schools in Fox Township
The first Atherton School was built in 1848 or 1849 near where Sol Fishberg lived. About 1850 this building was moved near the section line between sections 11 and 14 of Fox Township. Some years later the schoolhouse was moved to a place near Thomas Atherton's home. The Atherton School was in the northwest quarter of section 14 Fox Township on Budd Road about a quarter mile east of where Budd Road jogs south.
In 1846 James Murray donated a log building to the school district. This building was in section 3 or 4 of Fox Township. The Austin School was opened in 1848. Its precise location is unknown to the compiler but it was probably in section 3 of Fox Township.
The Cassem School was built by subscription in 1852 for a Lutheran Parochial School. The Lutheran Parochial School was taught in the building for three or four months of the year. The building was used as a public school when the parochial school was not in session. In 1906 the old building was replaced by a larger more modern building with a basement. The Cassem School was located in the northwest quarter of section 36 Fox Township. This school was also known as the Johnson School and Petty School.
See Greenfield School.
Fox Village Schools
The first school in the village of Fox was built on Chester Ament's farm in 1848, and was known as the Ament School. Later the name of the school was changed to Van Buren School. In 1873 a new schoolhouse was built. Smith Minkler, pioneer Kendall County nurseryman donated a large number of maple trees to landscape the schoolyard.
The Fox School was located in the southeast quarter of section 1 Fox Township on Fox Road about a quarter of a mile east of Highpoint Road. It is currently being used as a residence.
The Darnell School was the first school in what became the Greenfield School district. The Darnell School was built in 1849. The Greenfield School district was organized in 1859 as the Rogers School. A new schoolhouse was built and the name of the school changed to Greenfield School in 1861. The Greenfield School was in the northwest quarter of section 5 Fox Township on Millhurst Road about half way between and Oak Brook Roads.
The Hollenback School district has had many school buildings. The first building was a log schoolhouse built in the center of Hollenback Grove in the fall of 1837. In 1842 the benches were removed from the first school building to a building on what became the Atherton farm to accommodate the teacher, Miss Cyrille Pyeatt who lived nearby and taught the summer session. In the fall the benches were moved back to the original log schoolhouse. This building was used until the spring of 1844. Subsequently the district was divided. The Hollenback School district moved a frame building belong to William Haymond to the Hollenback farm for their school. In 1848-9 a log house on the George Hollenback farm was used for a school. In 1894 the "red" schoolhouse was completed. A new schoolhouse was erected in 1902. The final location of the Hollenback School was the southwest quarter of section 22 Fox Township near the intersection of Hollenback Road and Illinois Route 71.
Isaac Anderson School
The Isaac Anderson School was built in 1849 or 1850 and a new building was built in 1870. The school was located in the southeast quarter of section 33, Fox Township on Hughes Road about a half-mile east of Sleezer Road. This school was originally known as the Preston School and later was called the Crum School.
The Johnson School was built by subscription in 1852 for a Lutheran Parochial School. The Lutheran Parochial School was taught in the building for three or four months of the year. When the parochial school was not in session the building was used as a public school. In 1906 the old building was replaced by a larger more modern building with a basement.
The Johnson School was located in the northwest quarter of section 36 Fox Township near the intersection of Hughes and Helmar Roads. The school was also known as the Cassem School and Petty School.
The first school in the Millbrook School district was opened in 1841 in a little log schoolhouse built by Rev. Royal Bullard who served as the first teacher. It was replaced by a new one-room school built in 1846.
In 1913 it was proposed by some of the citizens of Millbrook and surrounding area that Districts 28 (Greenfield), 29 (Millbrook), 30 (Atherton) and 31 (Hollenback) be combined into a consolidated school district, with a central school in Millbrook. A couple of meetings were held in March 1913 to discuss the issue, but the proposal was not adopted.
In 1914 a two story school was built at a cost of $5,000 to replace the one-room, one story school located near the Millbrook Methodist Church. Classes began in the new building January 11, 1915. The lower grades were on the first floor. The seventh and eighth grades, and the newly opened high school were on the second floor. Professor L. C. Tuttle was superintendent of the high school, which had a two-year curriculum.
In 1836 or 1837 a schoolhouse was built on Daniel Bagwell's farm, later owned by Charles Whitfield, and paid for by subscription. Lumber was scarce and the building was made of logs. A log was left out on one side and a row of windowpanes put in its place. There was a small window and a door on the opposite side of the building and a huge fireplace at the end of the building. Seats were made of slabs of wood with the flat side up and four round sticks stuck in the slab for legs.
In 1876 a two-story frame schoolhouse with a high bell tower was built on Walnut Street at a cost of $2675. The building measured 34 by 37 feet on the ground with stories of thirteen and a half and eleven and a half feet high respectively. The top of the bell tower reached fifty-eight feet above the ground. In addition to the two schoolrooms the building included a recitation room and cloakroom. The contractors were Thomas Jefferson of Plano and Mr. Walters of Shabbona. The contract called for the building to be ready for occupancy by December 15, 1876 and it was finished ahead of that time and school began immediately after the Christmas holiday. Grades one through four were taught on the first floor and grades five through eight on the upper flour.
In 1919 a brick schoolhouse was built to replace the old wooden building.
See Cassem School.
See Isaac Anderson School.
See Greenfield School.
The Serrine School was opened in 1857. It was located on the Thomas Serrine farm in the northwest quarter of section 29 Fox Township.
Van Buren School
See Ament School.
Schools in Kendall Township
The first school in the Brown district was held from 1847-1850 in a small house owned and occupied by Stephen W. Brown. William Ferris erected the Brown School in 1851. The school was located in the northeast quarter of section 28 Kendall Township on the southeast corner of Illinois Route 47 and Walker Road. The building is currently used as a residence. The Brown School was also known as the Stephen W. Brown School.
Cross Lutheran Parochial
The Cross Evangelical Lutheran Parochial School opened in December 1881 in the congregation's church building. A new church was built in 1896 and the original building continued to be used as a school until a new school was built in 1931. The church and school are located in the southwest quarter of section 16 Kendall Township at the southwest corner of Illinois Route 47 and Ament Road. The school is an active and growing school. The physical plant was expanded in 2000 to meet current and future needs.
Helmar Lutheran Parochial
In 1851, P. A. Rasmussen began his work in the North Lisbon (later Helmar Lutheran) parochial school. In 1853 he left the school to enter a seminary at Fort Wayne, Indiana to prepare for the ministry. Other teachers followed in his footsteps until the last full-time teacher, William Larson, was called in 1915. He continued to teach until the general education portion of the school ceased in 1928.
The Helmar Lutheran congregation built three schoolhouses. The Helmar Lutheran Parochial School was located on Helmar Road about a quarter of a mile east of the church in the southwest quarter of section 31, Kendall Township. The Johnson School, also known as the Cassem and Petty School, was located in the northwest quarter of section 36 Fox Township. The Weeks School was located in the northwest quarter of section 5 Lisbon Township on Newark Road.
Immanuel Lutheran Parochial
The Immanuel Lutheran Parochial School was opened sometime in the early 1870s. The school was located in the northwest quarter of the southeast quarter of section 20 Kendall Township about a half-mile north of Walker Road next to the Immanuel Lutheran cemetery. The second school was located in the southeast quarter of section 29 Kendall Township. It was on Immanuel Road about a quarter of a mile south of Walker Road next to the present Immanuel Lutheran Church. The Immanuel Lutheran Parochial School closed in 1923.
The Inscho School was initially known as the Long Grove School. The first building was a log schoolhouse built in 1841 by members of the school district. Each man working on the building brought three to five logs to be used in its construction. In 1855 a frame schoolhouse was built. The name of this school was changed to Martner School and ultimately became the Inscho School. The school was located in the southwest quarter of section 18 Kendall Township on Highpoint Road about a quarter of mile east of the intersection of Highpoint and Lisbon Roads. The school closed in the spring of 1945.
The Kendall School was opened in a log house on Henry LeBarron's farm. The first session was during the summer of 1852. In 1856 William Ferriss built a frame schoolhouse for $640 on a lot donated by John W. Gallup. The final location of the Kendall School was the northwest quarter of section 14 Kendall Township at the northeast corner of Ament and Ashley Roads. This school was also known as the Shepard School.
See Needham School.
See Inscho School.
The Needham School was opened in 1856 as the Lewis School. A new schoolhouse was built in 1897. The school was in the southwest quarter of section 19 Kendall Township at the northeast corner of Walker and Lisbon Roads.
Before a schoolhouse was built in Pavilion, the nearest school was in Bristol where school was held in an old building on River Street. The children from Pavilion and vicinity walked to Yorkville and crossed the river on a footbridge made of hewn logs. The bridge ran from the foot of Main Street where William Bieritz's sawmill was located to River Street at the foot of King Street on the north side of the river.
About 1834 Rev. Tolman erected a frame house on his claim at Pavilion and donated the log house in which they first lived for a school. The school was equiped with slab benches and opened sometime in 1834 with C. B. Alvard as the first teacher.
Long Grove Academy was built in 1844 and a portion was used for the district school. The Academy was torn down in May 1873 and the bricks used to build a new one-room district school in Pavilion. The building continued to be used as the Pavilion School until about 1907, when the school was merged into the Yorkville School District. The owner of the land the one-room brick schoolhouse was located on removed the building in 1932.
Long Grove Academy at Pavilion
From 1834 to 1844 school was held in a log schoolhouse in Pavilion. Desiring better facilities Rev. Tolman drove through the country around Pavilion in 1844, soliciting five or ten dollars from each household for a new schoolhouse. The necessary funds were raised by private subscription and a one-story brick building was erected. The subscriber/contributors were the owners of the building with the ownership denominated by one share for each $5.00 subscribed. The legal name of the institution was Long Grove Academy.
Elisha Morgan deeded the land the building stood on to the district. Title for the land was to be held by the owners of the academy as long as the building, or part of it, was used as a common district school. If the land ceased to be used for a schoolhouse, the title to the land was to revert to Mr. Morgan.
The building had two rooms, but the dividing partition was movable, so the building could be thrown into one room for religious services on Sunday. The building was also a center for political gatherings and other public events and meetings.
When the building was divided into two rooms, one was used as the district school and the other for an academy or high school. The high school did not last long, so the entire building was then used for the district school. For some time, the Methodists lead by Rev. Michael Lewis held church services in the academy on Sunday. The German Lutherans also used the building for funerals.
The Long Grove Academy at Pavilion was torn down in May 1873 and the bricks used to build a new one-room district school on the site.
The Pletcher School district was organized in 1855 when the schoolhouse was erected. In the early days the building was used as a meetinghouse, church and Sunday school on Sundays. The school was located in the southwest quarter of section 27 Kendall Township at the northwest corner of the intersection of Caton Farm and Ashley Roads.
See Kendall School.
The Minkler School was opened in a log schoolhouse in 1835. A second log schoolhouse was built in 1837. In 1847 a frame schoolhouse was erected. Sometime later this building was replaced with a more spacious and substantial building. The school was located in the northeast quarter of section 3 Kendall Township. The school was also known as the Smith Minkler School.
In 1837 a primitive school was built in Yorkville and paid for by subscription. In 1839 a grammar school was opened in Yorkville in a small building used as a probate office by Norman Dodge. Later the building was part of Clarence Bretthauer's home. In 1842 a brick schoolhouse was paid for by public subscription and erected on Ridge Street. During the 1930s and 1940s the building was the home of Mrs. Fanny Oakland. In 1854 a two-story frame building was built on the northeast corner of Madison and Adams Streets. When the new consolidated school building was built west of the Congregational Church on the north side of the river, the building was closed and stood empty for a number of years. On June 2, 1889 the building burned to the ground.
In 1882 Mrs. Milton E. Cornell and Mrs. James A. Godard circulated a petition to unite the Bristol and Yorkville School Districts. The purpose of the consolidation was to replace primary and intermediate departments with a "graded school" and high school. The support for consolidation was overwhelming and the Trustees of the Bristol and Yorkville schools voted to unite the districts. An election was called and on May 14, 1882 the voters elected three directors of the newly consolidated district.
The first Yorkville High School was established in 1883 in a rented room on the second floor of Nelson Hubbard's furniture store and undertaking parlor. High school continued to be held in this building until the new consolidated grade and high school was opened on the north side of the river in January 1888. In 1907 the original building was enlarged by adding rooms on the east side. In 1927-1928 the building was further enlarged by adding classrooms and a gymnasium on the west side. The building is currently known as Parkview School.
Schools in Lisbon Township
The Booth School was opened about 1859. It was located in the southwest quarter of section 13 of Lisbon Township at the corner of US Route 52 and Church Road. After the school was closed the building was moved to US Route 52 and converted into a house.
Lisbon Center School
The Lisbon Center School was held in John Litsey's house from 1853 to 1855. In 1856 a schoolhouse was built in Lisbon Center. The school was located in the northeast quarter of section 9 Lisbon Township at the intersection of Illinois Route 47 and Lisbon Center Road. It was across the road from the Lisbon Center grain elevator. The Lisbon Center School was closed in 1961 and was one of the last one-room country schools in Kendall County.
Lisbon Village Schools
The first school in Lisbon village was opened in 1836 or 1837 in a log granary owned by Levi Hills, near the log tavern and stage stop kept by Mr. Hills. In the spring of 1838, construction began on a new frame schoolhouse in the village. By autumn the new schoolhouse was finished and standing on the public square. It was 20 by 30 feet with three large windows on each side of the building and a commanding height. It must have been an imposing building in those days.
The Lisbon Academy
Eben Miles Hills was one of the driving forces behind the building of the Lisbon Academy. The minutes of a meeting of the citizens of Lisbon and vicinity held on April 16, 1844 were found in his effects after his death. The meeting was called to discuss the founding of a high school or academy in Lisbon. The Lisbon Academy was built sometime between the organizational meeting in 1844 and 1849 at a cost of $1,000 raised by subscription.
The Lisbon Academy was a two-story building with a limestone exterior. The academy was still operating as late as March 1884. When the academy closed, the building became the Lisbon public grade and high school. The building is still standing on the northwest corner of Grove and Springfield Streets. The exterior walls have been covered with stucco so the limestone construction is not apparent. The building is currently used as an automotive repair facility.
The first school in the Plattville School district was held in Daniel Platt's log house in 1836. The first schoolhouse was a log building built about 1840 and located at the "Four Corners" one mile south of Plattville.
The first schoolhouse built in the village of Plattville was constructed in 1849. This building was replaced by a new two-story wooden frame building constructed in 1875. The first floor was used for primary and intermediate grades and the second story was used for a high school.
In 1928 a new brick schoolhouse was built with two classrooms and a library on the first floor and two large rooms in the basement. One of the two classrooms was used for a grade school and the other for a high school.
The first Porter School was built in 1847 near the Lewis Sherrill homestead.
In 1857 the schoolhouse was moved to the southwest quarter of section 28 Lisbon Township on Quarry Road about half way between Joliet and Whitewillow Roads.
See White Willow School.
The Weeks School, also known as the Worsley School, was opened in 1859 or 1861. In 1910 or 1911, a new school was built at a cost of $1,800. The school was located in the northwest quarter of section 5 Lisbon Township on Newark Road. It was located about a half-mile west of Illinois Route 47 or a mile and a half east of Lisbon Road. The building is currently used as a residence.
White Willow School
The White Willow School district was organized in 1848 and a school known as the Sherrill School was started in 1849. In 1866 the district was divided in half. The east half purchased the old school building and moved it east to Seward Township. This school became known as the Martin School.
The western half of the district erected a new schoolhouse in the community of White Willow. The first term in the new school was taught during the summer of 1867.
The White Willow School was located in the southwest corner of section 25, Lisbon Township in the community of White Willow. The school closed in 1951. The school has been converted to a residence and is still standing on the northeast corner of Whitewillow and Church Roads.
Schools in Little Rock Township
The first school in the southern part of Little Rock Township was opened in the winter of 1836. The school was held in a log house on the Barnabas Eldridge farm, later owned by Elijah Field.
One of the first schools in Little Rock Township was a log schoolhouse on the site of the Little Rock Township Cemetery. This school was opened in 1839 or 1840.
The Faxon School district was organized in 1851 or 1852 from Bristol and Little Rock Townships and a building built at that time. In 1867 the old wooden building was replaced by a brick building which was used until the school closed in August 1951. Like many of country schools, Faxon's enrollment fell below the state mandated minimum of ten students required to keep the school open and the district school board was forced to close the school. After the school closed some of the students attended Plano schools and the remainder attended school in the Bristol district. The school stood empty until the building and about one-half acre on which it stood was sold at public auction in July 26, 1957 to Glenn Coffman, Junior of Plano for $2,300.
The Faxon School was located in the northeast quarter of section 24 of Little Rock Township on the Little Rock-Bristol Township line at the southwest corner of Faxon and Eldamain Roads.
The Foster School was built in 1848. It was located in northeast quarter of section 9 Little Rock Township on Little Rock Road about a third of a mile south of Sears Road.
The first Hiddleson School was in a log house with a shake roof built in the Rob Roy timber in 1837. Later a frame schoolhouse was built in the northeast quarter of section 35 Little Rock Township on Blackhawk Road slightly north of River Road. The Hiddleson School was also known as the Lehman School.
Hiram Brown School
The first school in this district was held in J. M. Kennedy's home east of the site of the Hiram Brown School. The Hiram Brown School was erected about 1851. Other than the fact it was located in Little Rock Township the precise location of the school is unknown to the compiler.
The Holdridge School was built near the Hiddleson School in 1838 or 1839 and soon replaced the Hiddleson School.
The Lehman School was located on the property line between the farms owned by John Gilman and John Griswold. The Lehman School was also known as the Hiddleson School.
Little Rock Village Schools
The first school in Little Rock was held in a log schoolhouse built in 1839. This building was destroyed by fire in 1840. Another school was opened in a log building west of the Mulkey home in about 1848. From there it was moved to a room below Hatch's blacksmith shop across the road from the church.
In 1858 a two-story frame schoolhouse was erected in the village.
Plano schools had their beginning in the Gravel School built in 1850. The Gravel School was near what was then called Steward's Park. It was the leading school in the neighborhood until the Plano Academy was built.
The term academy or institute usually meant students were required to pay tuition to attend. The Plano "Academy" was a non-tuition or public school.
Construction of the Plano Academy was among the first of the public improvements in the new town of Plano. The Plano Academy was constructed in 1854 and was a 30 by 50 foot two story building. Two teachers were employed and the school was divided into primary and intermediate departments. Each room could accommodate 60 to 70 students.
The upper story was also used as a public hall for religious meetings, lectures, exhibitions, etc.
Plano Public Schools
In 1893 a new public school was built in Plano which contained the grade and high school. The building was three stories in height, built of pressed brick and red sandstone, displaying much originality. It contained ten large classrooms, two playrooms, office, toilet rooms, etc.
In 1926-7 a new high school was built to replace the high school built in 1893. The new building cost about $74,000 and was dedicated March 15, 1927.
The Ryan School was built near the Holdridge School in 1845 and soon took the students from the Holdridge School. The Ryan School was located in the northwest quarter of section 21 Little Rock Township at the intersection of Frazier and Creek Roads and remained open until the Plano Academy was built in 1854.
Sandy Bluff School
The Sandy Bluff School was opened in a log schoolhouse in 1840. A new wooden frame schoolhouse was built in 1845. On January 28, 1915 the school was completely destroyed by fire. A 32 by 34 feet building with cement block exterior and an asbestos shingle roof replaced the wooden building. The building had a full basement, a dormer and covered cement porch in front, and a sidewalk leading to the road. There were two cloakrooms, two halls, a library and a large classroom on the first floor.
The Sandy Bluff School was located in the southwest quarter of 29 Little Rock Township at the northeast corner of Sandy Bluff and Griswold Springs Roads. This school was also known as the Tolman School. It is currently used as a residence.
See Tyler School.
In 1844 a school was opened in what became the Sears district. The first schools were held in various unoccupied buildings, most of which were built of logs. The Sears School, a one-room frame building was built on the James Morris Sears farm in 1860. The Sears School closed its doors for the final time in May 1957. At this time only two one-room schools remained in Kendall County, Lisbon Center School in Lisbon Township and Jones School in Seward Township.
The Sears School was located about two miles north of Plano in the southeast quarter of section 2 Little Rock Township at the intersection of Sears and Rock Creek Roads.
The Sears School building and about one-third of an acre on which it stood was sold at public auction February 28, 1960 to Henry Kinsel of Millbrook for $2,000.
A school was opened in this district in 1857. A new school was built in 1894. The school was formerly known as the Scott School. The Tyler School was located in the southeast quarter of section 7 Little Rock Township on the south side of Tyler Road. The Tyler School closed in 1920.
Schools in NaAuSay Township
See Marysville School.
The Bethel School was opened in 1858 and was locate in the northwest quarter of section 13 NaAuSay Township at the intersection of Illinois Route 126 and Plainfield Road. The Bethel School was closed in 1944 when the district consolidated with the Walker School district.
The first school in the Bronk School district was held in an old shop on the Peter Van Dyke farm in early 1846. The first schoolhouse in the district was built in 1847 on what was the Clark farm later owned by Mrs. Bingham. Later the building was moved to the John Bronk farm. A new schoolhouse was built on the John Bronk farm in 1862 using lumber harvested in Aux Sable Grove. The Bronk School was located in the southeast quarter of section 26 NaAuSay Township at the northwest corner of Caton Farm and Ridge Roads. This school was also known as the Carpenter School. It is currently used as a residence.
The Cherry School or Grove School was opened in a small house in 1854 near the sawmill and shops in Aux Sable Grove. In the fall of 1855 a new school was built.
The Cherry School was located in the southeast quarter of section 5 NaAuSay Township on Grove Road about one-half mile south of Cherry Road.
See Marysville School.
The Gaylord School district was organized about 1845. This school was also known as Suydam School. The school was located in the northeast quarter of section 2 NaAuSay Township on the southwest corner of Plainfield Road and Cherry Roads.
See Cherry School.
The Marysville School was established in 1844 or 1845 and was the first school in Na Au Say Township. It was also known as the Becker, Foulston or "Tinkertown" School. In about 1848 the site of the school was changed and a new building erected. The school was then located on Schlapp Road in the northeast quarter of section 16 NaAuSay Township about a quarter of a mile south of Illinois Route 126. On June 5, 1954 the Marysville School property was sold to Frank Falkenberg.
School in this district was held the first year in Parshall Reeve's residence. The original McCauley School, also known as the Whitlock School, was built in 1853 or 1854. In 1890, a new schoolhouse was built.The McCauley School was located in the southwest quarter of section 28 NaAuSay Township on the north side of Caton Farm Road about three-quarters of a mile west of Schlapp Road. The school house has been converted into a residence.
See Gaylord School.
The Union School was built in the summer of 1846 or 1847 and paid for by subscriptions. It was designed to serve as a church and school house, and served as both until 1866 when the Aux Sable Grove Presbyterian Church was built. The lumber to build the Union School was hauled from Chicago by wagons and the building was built by Noble W. Graves.
The Union School was located in the northwest quarter of section 19 NaAuSay Township on the south side of Wheeler Road about one-half mile east of Grove Road. The Union School closed in 1948.
The Union School building has been moved to the Lyon Farm, which is owned by the Kendall County Historical Society. It has been restored and is open for display several times a year when the Society holds special events at the farm.
The first Wynne schoolhouse was built in 1853. A new building was erected in 1901. The Wynne School was located in the southwest quarter of section 29 NaAuSay Township at the northeast corner of Grove and Caton Farm Roads. When the Wynne School was closed the building was purchased and converted into a residence. This school was also known as the Todd School.
Schools in Oswego Township
See Willow Hill School.
See German School.
The first Cutter School was built in 1845. In 1849, this building was destroyed by fire a few weeks into the school term. The remainder of the school term was finished in an old house owned by Daniel Ashley. For the next ten years school was held in abandoned homes with the exception that for two years, the school was held in a private home. The Cutter schoolhouse was rebuilt in 1859.
The Cutter School was located in the northeast quarter of section 24 Oswego Township at the intersection of Illinois Route 71 and Minkler Road. This school was also known as the Cowdrey School and Fox School.
The German School was opened in 1851 in the basement of the Evangelical German Church. About ten years later the church building was moved eighty rods east to the site of the Oswego Prairie (Evergreen) Cemetery.
In 1885 a new building was erected near the residences of Fred Bower and George Collins and became known as the Collins School.
The German School was located in the southeast quarter of section 23 Oswego Township at the intersection of Wooley and Roth Roads.
The Harvey School district was organized in 1854. It was located in the northeast quarter of section 13 Oswego Township on Wolfs Road about a mile west of Illinois Route 30. The school was also known as the Updike School.
The first school in Oswego was opened in a log schoolhouse on the bluff overlooking the river where Catholic missionaries taught the Pottawattomie Indian children. When the Indians were removed from the area in 1837, white settlers used the building as a school. Adeline Warner was the first teacher of the school.
A new school was built about 1840 near Oliver Hebert's carriage and wagon shop. School was held here until the Stone School was completed.
In 1850 or 1852 a stone schoolhouse was built and opened as a graded school. The Stone School was located at the intersection of Tyler and Monroe Streets in Oswego. On March 2, 1885 a fire began near the chimney in a wooden addition used by the primary department. Apparently the building was in a deteriorated state and no great effort was made to extinguish the fire. It was viewed by some as a good riddance.
When Oswego lost the courthouse to Yorkville, the old courthouse was first used as the Oswego town hall. Immediately after the destruction of the Stone School the Board of Directors established a temporary school in the old courthouse. The upper and intermediate departments were held in the courtroom and the Circuit Clerk's office used as a recitation room. The primary department was taught in the grand jury room. After the Stone School was destroyed there was some debate whether to make over the old courthouse for a permanent replacement or to build a new schoolhouse. School directors decided the best approach would be to purchase the courthouse site and build a new school there. In April 1885 school directors approved $10,000 for the purchase of the building site and construction of the new school. The old courthouse was torn down in July 1885 and a new two-story brick building with a full basement built on the site. There were two large rooms on the first floor where the primary and intermediate departments were located. Two similar rooms were located upstairs where the grammar department and high school were located. The new school was completed on January 28, 1886 and dedicated two weeks later.
As late as 1892 the majority of students in the Oswego school system did not go beyond the intermediate grade, which was probably the equivalent of an eighth grade education today. Initially completion of the high school curriculum required two years of study for those who wanted to continue their education beyond the intermediate level. In September 1893 the board of directors of the Oswego school system authorized a twelve-year curriculum, three of which were at the high school level.
Little White School
The "Little White School" was originally built in 1850 as the Oswego Methodist-Episcopal Church. It was used as a school starting around 1915.
The Russell School was opened about 1840. It was located in the northeast quarter of section 32 Oswego Township at the intersection of Grove and Stephens Road.
See Willow Hill School.
The Squires School was established about 1857. It was located in the northwest quarter of section 10 Oswego Township at the northeast corner of Illinois Route 34 and Douglas Road. The Squires School was demolished and burned in August 1994 to make way for a subdivision. The school was also known as the Pearce School.
The Walker School was opened in 1857 and was also known as Consolidated District No. 5. The school was located in the northwest quarter of section 34 Oswego Township at the intersection of Plainfield and Kinney Roads.
The Wilcox School was built in 1863. The school was in the southeast quarter of section 26 Oswego Township on Gilmore Road between Collins and Kinney Roads.
Willow Hill School
The Willow Hill School was built in 1841 and rebuilt in 1858. It was also known as the Albee School and Schell School. An earlier school had been held in Walter Selvey's house before the schoolhouse was built. The Willow Hill School was located in the northeast quarter of section 2 Oswego Township at the intersection of Illinois Routes 30 and 34.
The Wormley School was opened about 1839 in Mr. Devoe's home. Later it was moved to John Wormley's granary. Still later a schoolhouse was built of two-inch thick planks stood on the end and pinned to the sills. A frame schoolhouse replaced the old school house in 1868.
The Wormley School was located in the northwest quarter of section 8 Oswego Township on Illinois Route 31 about a quarter of a mile north of Light Road. The school closed about 1951.
Schools in Seward Township
The Bell School was opened in 1855. A new 30 by 33-foot schoolhouse was constructed in 1902 making it the largest schoolhouse in Seward Township. The school was located in the southeast quarter of section 21 Seward Township on Bell Road about a quarter of a mile east of Hanson Road. The Bell school has been converted to a residence.
The Chapman School was opened in 1849 as the Peter O'Brien School. In 1866 a large school building was built near Diodate Chapman's home at a cost of $2,500. The building was used to hold church and Sunday school as well as a school.
The Chapman School was located in the northwest quarter of section 26 Seward Township at the southwest corner of Ridge and Wildy Roads. The school closed about 1920 and was converted into a private residence.
The Heap School was built in 1869. This was the last school district organized in Seward Township. The school was located in the northwest quarter of section 20 Seward Township on Grove Road a short distance south of Illinois Route 52.
According to Hicks History of Kendall County, Illinois, "a school was kept in one of Frink and Walker's houses near Patrick's Stand for twelve years but it was not permanent." This school was in what became the Henderson School district. The Henderson School was opened in 1854 or 1856. It was located in the southeast quarter of section 33 Seward Township at the intersection of Holt and Hanson Roads. The Henderson School was closed in 1926.
In 1845 a school was held in a log house on Edward Jones' farm. In 1907 a new schoolhouse was built. The Jones School was located in the northeast quarter of section 11 Seward Township on Ridge Road about half way between Jones and Van Dyke Roads. This school was also known as the Fletcher School and Ware School.
The White Willow School district was organized in 1848 and a school known as the Sherrill School was started in 1849. In 1866 the district was divided in half. The east half purchased the old school building and moved it east to what was known as "Martin Corners" in Seward Township. The crossroads were by the property then owned by George B. Martin and the school became known as the Martin School. The school was located in the southwest quarter of section 29 Seward Township at the northeast corner of Grove and Whitewillow Roads. Starting in 1873 a Sunday school met in the Martin School. Occasionally Rev. Andrew W. Chapman would hold church services here as well. This continued until the First Congregational Church was built on the ridge in Seward Township. The school was closed in 1946.
The McKanna School district was organized in 1840. In the summer of 1858 a new school was built and this building was repaired and remodeled in 1882. The McKanna School was located in the southwest quarter of section 5 Seward Township. The school was on Van Dyke Road about a half mile east of Grove Road.
Peter O'Brien School
The Peter O'Brien School was opened in 1849 and closed in 1865. In 1866 a new school opened about a mile east of the O'Brien School near Diodate Chapman's home on Ridge Road. With the opening of the Chapman School the O'Brien School was no longer needed. The O'Brien School was in the northwest quarter of section 26 Seward Township on Wildy Road about a quarter of mile west of Seward Mound Cemetery.
Seward Center School
The first schoolhouse in Seward Township was on Chester House's farm and was known as the Seward Center School. In 1835 Messrs. House, Mattison and Whiteman built a log schoolhouse in Aux Sable Grove. Several families moved away and for a number of years school was not held in the area.
See Jones School