Meservey Hill School
A joint district school with Wellsville.
Picture from files of Dyke Street Museum & Thelma Roger Genealogical & Historical Society
December 29, 1874 – (Wellsville Daily Reporter-7/29/1961) – Joint District No. 5 of Alma and Wellsville was called “Meservey Hill School”. December 29, 1874, Jeremiah Halsey deeded land “so long as said School District shall maintain and use the same for a District Schoolhouse lot and no longer, “to sole trustee Josiah Bartlett. Some of its teachers were Elizabeth Murphy, Hannah Donovan, Mr. McGuirk, Mary Dolan McCormick and Alice Cady. The school building now serves as a dwelling.
***The following story written by perhaps the last teacher of District #5 School, Alice Cady, was printed in the Wirt/Richburg Historical Society Newsletter and is reprinted here with permission.
One Room School
By Alice Cady
On top of Meservey Hill, no other building in sight, was a one room school. There was a woodshed well stocked with wood and kindling, a pump for water outside the front door, and two toilets behind the school
I had to board with the trustee about a half mile from the school. I only had grades one through five with 10 pupils. The older ones in grades seven through twelve went to Wellsville.
One of the teacher's duties was to start the fire, so I usually got there before eight and stayed after school until nearly five, getting seat work on the board for the next day and doing janitor work.
In the winter, the snow blew in around the windows, so I stuffle my dad's old underwear in the cracks. The children sat around the stove until they were warm. One of the fifth grade boys was very handy with tools. I took orange crates from my dad's store and he made little chairs that could be moved about easily.
The pay was $25 per week. I had to wait for my first paycheck until the potatoes were harvested.
The parents were very friendly and cooperative.
At Christmas time, we had a program and party with parents attending. The children that went to Wellsville stopped after school and practiced and took part in the program. Lucile Wightman Baldwin and Mary Cady Priddy came with their violins. it was well attended.
The second year I taught there I bought a used car and drove back and forth after Easter.
Families kept moving out of the district and finally one family was left, so I was very thankful to get a job for the next year in Richburg. I felt that I had learned far more than I taught. Then when I faced thirty plus children in one grade, I wondered if rural schoolhouses didn't have some advantages.