Union Elementary School
by Mrs. Lucy Killian
In the early 1920s and 30s, Berge Beam, school superintendent, proposed a massive
building program for the schools in Lincoln County. Many people argued to keep
the neighborhood schools because of the greater distance students would have to
walk. Others argued in favor of the consolidation because of better facilities.
Also, students would have a better chance to earn a high school diploma since a
high school would be located in the community. A bond referendum was held
and the people of Lincoln County voted to finance the building program. As a
result, many small schools were consolidated in 1921 to form the new Union High
School. It is possible to trace the history of some of these small, community
Trinity School was unique because it had three names during its brief history.
It was called Lutz School then Seigle School before being named Trinity School. It
can be verified that Trinity School was established prior to 1814 as there are
records of the first Trinity Lutheran Church service being held in the school
building on March 8, 1814. Trinity School was a two room house which was
consolidated in 1826 with Leonard School to form Ridge Academy.
Ridge Academy was built by Wiley M. Childers. It consisted of four rooms with
a movable wall between two of the rooms to form a large room for programs and
meetings. This school was considered one of the better schools. Grades one
through eleven were taught. In 1924, students in grades six through eleven were
transported to the recently constructed Union School. By 1932 only two teachers
and a small number of students were left at Ridge Academy. The school closed in
1932 and all the students attended Union High School.
Reepsville School was built in 1890. There was no well for water. Children
would be sent to the John Killian store to carry water back to the school. The
children would carry the buckets of water between two broom handles. The
building and land were bought by Eugene McConnell who remodeled the building
and lived in it for several years.
Laurel Hill School was moved from the Seagle Town Road to a site across from
Bethel Methodist Church on Cansler Road.
Daniels School was built on land next to Daniels Church property. The school
was three rooms on ground level with an auditorium upstairs which was used as a
classroom when necessary. Daniels School offered high school subjects but by
1924 all high school students were assigned to Union High School. Daniels
continued as a grammar school until fire destroyed it in 1932.
Flint Hill School was built in 1918. In 1924, pupils were assigned to either
Crouse School or Howards Creek School. Patrons objected to the school being
closed. The next year the school reopened for only the elementary schools.
Those desiring a high school education continued to attend Crouse School. The
school opened and closed several times. In August 1927, it was reopened for
black children. During a severe storm in 1935 the building was blown off its
foundation. When it finally closed the building was sold to Wayne Heavner. In
1936 the building burned.
White Zion School was built by Oscar Hartsoe in 1907. When the school closed
it was sold to L.R. Boyles. Later it was torn down and used to add a classroom to
the Mitchell School in the North Brook Number Two area.
Howard's Creek School was completed in 1923. The area had the first bus in
the county. It was a Model T bus and was driven by Luther Scronce. He picked up
students from 1921 to 1923 to Pleasant Home School and Leonards Fork Schools
and took them to Crouse High School. Later, the bus became the property of
Howard's Creek School. The school actually had its own bus garage.
Union High School was built on land donated by Thomas Monroe Hoover. The
school was constructed in 1921 and consisted of four classrooms on the ground
level with an auditorium on the second level. In 1928 the auditorium was rebuilt
to make additional classrooms. In 1932, 1934, and 1948 school remodeling and
construction continued for an ever growing community. In July, 1962 lighting
struck the school and destroyed all but the cafeteria and four classrooms above it.
In 1963, the school was rebuilt. (Until 1995, this part was still being referred to as
the "new building.") In 1961 West Lincoln High School was built and Union School
became Union Elementary School. In 1974, West Lincoln Junior High School was
built and Union served kindergarten through sixth grade. In 1989 the sixth grade
moved to West Lincoln Middle School and Union began serving kindergarten
through fifth grade. In 1994, the citizens of Lincoln County passed a bond vote.
Union Elementary School was the first school in the system to undergo
construction with the bond money. The bond provided 3.2 million dollars for
Union School building project.
Today, Union Elementary School is a modern, up to date facility. The needs of
the boys and girls in the school community will continue to be met by the
outstanding support of the community and the dedication of the school staff.
* Mrs. Lucy Killian was a teacher at Union School from 1951 to 1976. Her daughter, Mrs. Jane Conner
was a student at Union School from 1948 to 1960. Mrs. Conner began her teaching career at Union in