Greenwalt School #66

Organized 15 Mar 1870. District comprised Section 9, 10, 15, 16, W1/2 of 11, 14, N1/2 of 21.

link to locator map

From “The hitching post …” column in the Ottawa Herald, a series of articles about early Franklin County schools researched by Bruce Fleming and written by Herald Editor and Publisher Jim Hitch. 12 Dec.  1991.

Greenawalt School, District 66, was located a mile west and 2¾ miles south of Princeton  on the east side of the road. The school was closed in 1943. Its last teacher was a Mrs. Crowly and the last pupils to attend were Bob Roush and Frank Schaffe Jr.

L.E. Roush, Mrs. John Guy and Roy Roberts comprised the last school board.

Former students known to still be living in Franklin County are Bob Knight, Jim Cook, Bob and Bruce Roush and Leon Gentry.

The school site today is owned by Forest and Martha Yancey and a concrete slab that was a part of the school entrance remains in a pasture as a reminder of Greenawalt”s existence.

Bob Roush of rural Princeton recalls that, “I had a trap line that I ran on my way to school. I caught mostly muskrats in the neighbors’ ponds.

According to Roush and others, a trap line was the first business venture for many country boys. They trapped skunk, opossum, muskrat and, if they were lucky, a raccoon or a mink. They usually carried a single shot rifle to kill any animal caught during the night.

Sometimes they carried the gun to school. At other times guns were hidden in a hedge row to be picked up on the way home. On occasion, boys came to school reeking from the odor of skunk and usually were sent home to change clothes.

Skins were stretched wrong side out, on boards shaped like ironing boards to dry. At the end of the season, pelts were taken to a fur dealer.

Gravel Hill School preceded Greenawalt. It was two miles west and one south of the Greenawalt location.

The following is from “The Gentry Saga” a family history by Earnest Gentry, furnished by his daughter, Claudia (Gentry) Payne, 1031 N. Cedar.

”In the fall of 1869, father purchased a claim of 80 acres, with a two-room house and other improvements. With $25 left, he hiked back to Missouri and moved his family of seven children and wife back to Franklin County by mid-October to start a winter with nothing but his $25 and several horses and cows.”

“Rev. Chaffee, one-time pastor of Ottawa and father of Nell Chaffee, well known teacher in the Ottawa schools for many years, came out with Mr. Benedict, from Brooklyn, as a young minister, and preached at the old “Gravel Hill” schoolhouse, located just across the road on the rise northeast of our new Kansas home.”

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