Sac Valley or Sac Creek #61

Section 11, Township 17S, Range 17E. 1885 Atlas has #61 in 03-19-18

link to locator map

From “The hitching post…” column in the Ottawa Herald, a series pf articles about early Franklin County schools researched by Bruce Fleming and written by Herald Editor and Publisher Jim Hitch. This article appeared 31 October, 1991.

Sac Valley School, District 61, more popularly known as Sac Creek, was organized in 1869 and closed in 1950.

The last schoolhouse was approximately 6 ½ miles south and a mile west of Homewood, on the southwest corner of the intersection. It was on the northeast corner of the Will Todd farm.

An earlier schoolhouse, located in an 1885 Atlas, was a mile north and a half mile west, on the south side of the road.

Avis Polley was the last teacher and the last students to attend Sac Valley were Rita (Burrough) Wilper, Bill Burrough, Jean Heiman, Junior Snodgrass, Donna Neilson, Frank Duane Randel, Don C. Randel, Betty (Randel) Cunningham, Letha (Womble) McCracken and Rita (Burrous) Wilter.

Others known to have taught at Sac Creek are John Rooney, Amy DeJarnett, Leona Fanning, Gretchen Todd, Marjory Van Horn and Eula Lankard.

Members of the last school board were Howard Solsby, Theodore Randel and John Keenan.

According to Geraldine “Jerry” (Graffham) Abbott, 940 Cypress, the last schoolhouse was moved to Williamsburg and used for classrooms until the new high school there was completed.

Later, the Charles Hamiltons bought the building and moved it to their farm, now owned by Don and Doris Randel, a mile south and a half-mile east of Ransomville, where it became a garage and shop.

“I have many fond memories of my eight years at Sac Creek,” Abbott recalled recently. “My sister, Phyllis, and I, walked a mile and a quarter to school every day, rain or snow. One memory is of a quaint well pump on the side yard where you turned its crank and a rattley chain went down and around bringing up water that we drank from a common dipper hanging on the side.

“In the winter, “she continued, “we played ‘fox and geese’ in the snow. There was a sand box near the stove where we played when the weather was bad. We had a map of the United States that hung behind the teacher. It hung on the south wall, which reversed the directions of the country, which made it confusing.”

Three Sac Creek reunions have been held, the last in 1990. Abbott said she would like to hear from any former student so that she can send invitations for the next one. Her telephone number is 242-3167.

Former Sac Creek pupils still living in Franklin County include: Geraldine (Graffham) Abbott, Roberta (Ware) Hughes, Jim Ferguson, Mildred (Peddicord) Decker, Nina (Peddicord) Fitzgerald , Gene Adams, Patty (Adams) Carey, Claudine (Neilson) McArthur, Max Randel, Betty (Randel) Cunningham, Letha Mae (Womble) McCracken, George Ferguson and Carolyn (Nichols) Layton.

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