Ash Valley School

Ash Valley School 1916
Ash Valley School 1916

In July 1875, eighteen Ash Valley residents petitioned for the formation of a school district. The Board of Supervisors tabled it. The petition failed to enumerate how many children resided in the valley. Of note, the majority of the petitioners were bachelors. A year later, a new petition was submitted that informed the Board there were fifteen children in the valley—the petition was approved.

Sometime in the late 1870s, the residents worked together to construct the schoolhouse. Records are not clear, but between 1917 and 1919 the school was closed. In July 1920, the residents requested the school be re-established and the request was granted. In 1923, the school closed again, as Julia A. Norwood, County Superintendent of Schools stated there was not a sufficient number of students. Norwood, on an optimistic note, ordered that the school’s fixtures and equipment remain in tact. The records, again, do not indicate when the school re-opened. At the County Board of Supervisor’s meeting of August 20, 1929 the minutes state: “Mrs. Mary Bath, Mr. & Mrs. J.T. Bath of Ash Valley appeared before the Board in the interest on emergency school at Ash Valley. It appearing that the proper showing had been made for this school, Mr. Bath is advised that a teacher would be designated.” This problem occurred again in 1934, when the school trustees were not able to secure a teacher and it was designated as an “emergency class.” The Board hired Jessie B. Madison for its teacher. The school closed for a final time in 1941. The last students to graduate were John Bath and Martha Bath in 1938. In September 1946, the Board of Supervisors declared the school as surplus property and ordered its sale, yet no buyers came forward.

Ash Valley School
Ash Valley School, as viewed from the cemetery, 2002.

It should be noted the school is located on a 40 acre parcel that also contains the Ash Valley Cemetery.

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