The history of the Manning Public Schools begins with the first term of school taught, which commenced November 20, 1881. B. I. Salinger was the first teacher and commenced his first term with an enrollment of 61 pupils. The room used was the back half of Callimore's building, located on the ground floor, and rented for one year. A clipping from the Monitor, issued December 29, 1881, will show the condition of the schools at this time, "The school has been in operation for one month past, under the tuition of Mr. B. I. Salinger and numbers about 90 pupils. The school will be divided after the holidays and the primary department put into the hands of Mrs. Winter."
Although the people were agitating an independent school district at this early date, the following clipping from the Monitor will explain why the same was postponed till a later date. "The question of the organization of an independent school district has been discussed by a number of men who are most interested in good schools. In order to he informed upon the subject and give the people the benefit of our knowledge, we take this opportunity to say that it will be impossible for an independent district organization in Manning to do us any good at present, because the assessment of the property upon which this town stands was made last spring and the valuation was about $5.00 per acre. Now the rate percent allowed by law to be levied or voted in bonds on this valuation would amount to almost nothing when compared with the cost of a decent school house for a town like ours.
Thus it will be seen that to set off a district now would only be to cut ourselves loose from the only organization that can give us a school for the next year, the township of Warren. It will then become necessary for the Township to build a house of sufficient size and that will have proper accommodations to accommodate the town until we can get another assessment and be set off when we shall be able to build larger. The amount which the township can expend in this building will be about $1000.00"
The first school report was published March 16, 1882, and read as follows, "Report of
Manning schools for the third term of its session;
Principals room neither tardy or absent Myron Cronkhite, Alva Smith, Charles Coe, Frank Tidd, Nellie Woolman, Olive Cronkhite, Freeman Tucker, George Ferguson, Clara Barker; standing the highest average in studies and deportment -- Myrta Dorset, 97. 25; highest in arithmetic -- Rosa Stalker and Jennie Parker, 94; highest in reading and paraphrasing -- J. W. Lindsay, 90. 75; highest in map drawing -- Estella Branson, 92; spelling and defining -- Myron Cronkhite, 99; grammar -- Adora Smith, 92.5; geography -- Emma Priest. 92.
I hereby certify the above report to be a correct transcript of the register and class records kept in said school.
Benjamin I. Salinger, Principal."
The first school meeting held, in which the Manning Schools played a prominent part, was in the second week of March, 1882, the notice of which read as follows, "The annual District Township meeting of Warren Township, Carroll County, Iowa, was called together by Mr. Woolman, the president being absent. Paul Winter was chosen chairman of the meeting. On motion of Seth Smith the Board of Directors were authorized to move schoolhouse No. 3 to a suitable point to accommodate the residents of the Bingham District. The presidents report was read and approved by the meeting and referred to the new board. Moved that a tax of 1 percent be levied to build a schoolhouse in the Town of Manning, the ballots to read 'for tax' or 'against tax'. On motion of B. I. Salinger one hour was allowed for voting. At the expiration of the hour, the ballots were counted showing the following result, for taxation 85; against taxation 35. On motion the meeting adjourned. J. B. Ingledue, Secretary. "
The first election of the district was held, March 13, 1883, and resulted in the following persons being elected to serve on the school board, V. Roush, C. M. Failing, L. H. Bingham, John Hoffmann, J. S. Ferguson, and P. A. Emerv.
Immediately after the setting off of the independent district and the election of the school hoard, the board of directors requested the directors of Warren township to meet with them for the purpose of adjusting the assets and liabilities of the school funds and make a division that the Independent District might receive their share of the proceeds. This the township board refused to do until compelled through the mandamus-proceedings which were instituted against them.
Up to and including this year B. I. Salinger served as Principal having filled that position two years.
After having engaged teachers for the ensuing year, the board proceeded to take
measures toward the erection of a good school building. The following is a description of
the building erected and a review of the proceedings of the board, as given in the Monitor
bearing date of July 16, 1883: "On a most beautiful site in this progressive city will be
erected during the season a commodious and handsome school building. The plan of the
building agreed upon in the matter herein stated was drawn by one of the best architects
in Iowa, W. L. Flack of Des Moines.
The size of the building is to be 62 by 32 feet with a "T" in the rear 26 by 32 feet and all to be two stories high. There are to be three entrances, the main entrance and two side entrances. On the first floor are two small rooms in the main part 20 by 30 feet 8 inches in the clear excluding the space used for the teachers platform. In the "T" is a room 18 by 30 feet in the clear. Adjoining these are the hall-ways, cloakrooms and stairways, all well arranged. In the second story are two study rooms the same size as those in the first story, and two recitation rooms in the "T", each 15 by 20 with cloakrooms and hallways. The plan is well adapted to the wants of this district and the people are to be congratulated in the choice of an excellent plan". It seems that at this time there was a dead lock and the board was unable to agree on the choice of a set of plans, so the matter was referred to a committee of five outside of the board which consisted of, Seth Smith, Dr. G. M. Barber, J. B. Ingledue, U. S. Heffelfinger and R. J. Benson. The choice that the committee adopted was the plan described above. The contract for the building of the schoolhouse was given to J. B. Stillmans. A stipulation of the contract was that the building should be completed and ready for occupancy by October 1, 1883.
Following is the school report for the spring term of this year:
|A. B. Hardin||Intermediate||62|
|G. F. Ostrander, Principal||High School||42|
It appears that at this time there were no church bells in the town so the school bell was used on Sundays to call the people to church, which will be explained by the followings motion "that the church people be notified, that if they want the use of the bell they must make arrangements with the Janitor". At about this time the congregation of the M. E. church asked for and was granted permission to use the schoolhouse for religious services.
The salaries for this year were placed as follows: Principal $75 per month, and the
remainder of the salaries at $40 per month.
The School year was to consist of ten months.
At the September meeting of the board, G. F. Ostrander was elected secretary of the board
and W. C. Henshaw was elected treasurer. There was also another department created.
Following are the teachers reports for this year:
|Nettie Morrissey||First Primary||43|
|Gertrude Chandler||Second Primary||40|
|G. F. Ostrander Principal||High School||50|
The board for this year consisted of L. P. Brigham, E. M. Funk, U. L. Patton, D. D. Clark, J. B. Henshaw and B. I. Salinger. U. L. Patton was re-elected president of the Board. Judging from the pen of the poet, these gentlemen must have possessed rare qualifications and high aspirations as will be shown by the verses that follow.
"I am a lively grain man,
And when the summer's o'er,
Like Bun, the squirrel, gather
My grain for winter store.
But I've a greater calling,
Which I'll follow if I can,
I got the office of President,
And I'll fill it if I can.
I think, I'm almost certain,
That I'm a lumber man,
Who to purchasers both near and wide
Will sell it when I can.
And I, too, have a duty
Unfit for every man,
It's filling a kingly office,
And I'm filling it, so I am.
I know that I'm a clothing man,
My goods are very low;
And I can rig you out with suits,
From finger tips to toes.
But to one thing, my dear friends,
I've aspired since being a man,
Was to serve in filling an office,
And now, yes now, I am.
I'm sure that I'm a doctor,
I'll give you sawdust pills;
I'll blister and I'll bleed you
And I'll cure you of all ills.
But in this world I have resolved
To do what good I can,
So, I raised our teachers wages
On the strict economy plan.
Lo! before you stands a lawyer,
Who will plead a case for you;
Not a naughty, fibbing lawyer,
But one that's good and true.
So I worked myself in office
Like a young and clever man,
And I'll cast my vote for teachers,
On some wise and secret plan.
I'm a real wise, live banker,
Oh! very, very wise;
Not one bit of naughty mischief
Can escape my watchful eyes.
I must not refuse the office
So I'll do the best I can,
I'll cast my vote for teachers,
just to tease the other men.
MOERSHELL. for six.
Now do not laugh, good people,
You may live to see us there,
We aspire to nothing higher
Than a School Directors chair.
And when called to take our places,
Which we surely can and will,
Don't grumble about unjustness,
But surrender like a man.
During the year a change was made in the length of the term which the directors were to serve. Up to this time all six of the directors served one year each, which, as a rule resulted in the entire Board consisting of new men to the position. In order that there might always be some experienced men on the board, the following change was made. The regular term of office should be three years, and as the members comprising the board at this time were all elected for one year they drew lots to decide how long each were to serve.
The result was as follows:
For the long term, of three years, B. I. Salinger and J. B. Henshaw; for the term of two years, U. L. Patton and D. D. Clark; for one year, L. P. Brigham and E. M. Funk. As a result of this change there was to be only two directors to be elected so that each year four directors carried over. Upon the resignation of D. D. Clark, D. W. Sutherland was elected to fill the vacancy. It appears that the election was very close and interesting as there were 120 votes cast and seven candidates in the field. O. E. Dutton was elected treasurer and J. 13. Ingledue secretary, for the ensuing year.
The Treasurers report for the preceding year was as follows:
School house Fund, $146.89
Contingent Fund, $132.42
Teachers Fund, $127.58
Received from the Township of Warren, $197.72
Total Balance on hand, $604.61.
The first attempt at the institution of a school LIBRARY was made in June, when the board purchased a full set of Johnson's Cyclopedia. The Library Fund which had been created, was, this year, increased $11.30 by tuitions.
The teachers salaries for the ensuing- year was placed as follows: Principal, $75.00 per month; Assistant Principal, $37.50 per month and all others, $35.00 per month.
Owing to the increased enrollment another grade and an Asst. Principal was added. The teachers for the ensuing year remained the same as the year previous with the exception of Miss Branson, teacher of the Grammar Department. Upon the resignation of Miss Branson, Ella McCrae was elected to fill the vacancy. The school year was fixed at ten months. Following is the school report for the year:
|Nettie Morrissey||First Primary||54|
|Gertrude Chandler||Second Primary||40|
|Mrs. Alice Engleman, Asst. Prin.||High School||70|
|G. F. Ostrander, Principal.||---||----|
The treasurer's report for the year was: Teachers Fund $2500; Contingent Fund, $1500; Schoolhouse Fund $500. Two vacancies were caused by resignations this year, that of Miss Branson, teacher of the Grammar Department, who was succeeded by Mrs. Engleman, and of Miss Bishop, teacher of the Intermediate Department, who was succeeded by Mary Morrissey.
It appears that during the year the teachers had been rather negligent in the observance of rules 7 & 8 which provided for the opening exercises as follows: "The opening exercises shall consist of the reading of the scriptures without comment, which may be followed by appropriate singing at the option of the teacher. Teachers shall not exercise any sectarian influence over the school; but shall at all times impress upon the minds of their pupils, correct principles of morality and virtue, a sacred regard for truth and habits of sobriety and industry". They made special efforts to enforce these rules as the records will show. In order to facilitate the enforcement of rule 7, relating to the reading of the scriptures as a part of the opening exercises, five bibles were purchased for the use of the teachers.
This year the school had the same number of teachers but the classification was different.
The changes were, the creation of a Second Intermediate Department, which formerly was
the Grammar Room, and the Grammar Room taking the place of the B. and C. classes of
the High School which, formerly, was taught by the Assistant Principal.
The school report for the year is as follows:
|Eva Maxwell||First Primaryy||53|
|Gertrude Chandler||Second Primary||49|
|Lola Robinson||First Intermediate||51|
|Clara Branson||Second Intermediate||41|
|S. L. Garrett||Grammar School||46|
|C. W. Durrett, Principal||High School||----|