|By Bob Weaver|
Original Mt. Zion School - 1885-1924
MT. ZION SCHOOL - 1928 - First row: Fred Shaffer,
Mary McDonald Teacher, Ernest Sickle, Tom Sickle,
Harry Shaffer, Alfred Hersman, Lena Null, Oral Sickle,
Kenny Gunn, Billy Gunn, Jim Sturm, Simon Greathouse,
Billy Hersman, _____Digman, _____Fowler, Edith Gunn,
_____Digman, Dale Gunn, _____Silcott; Second Row:
Loraine _____, Hetty Greathouse, Eloise Gunn, Brooke
Riddle, Ernie Norman, Mildred Fowler, Merle Gunn,
Eileen Slider, Thelma Riddle, Mildred Greathouse,
Mildred Sturm, Eleanor Riddle, Geraldine Hersman.
Students from the old Mt. Zion School will return tomorrow for another reunion of the one room school. The doors will open about 10 a.m. at the Mt. Zion Community Park, with a covered dish lunch about noon.
teacher Marvin Stemple, who attended the school, said reunion numbers
have been dwindling these past years.
Stemple said he spent all his grade school years there, except one day when
he was sent to Grantsville. "I didn't like the big city school and came back to
Mount Zion," he said.
Irene Gunn and late Bernard McDonald, who once taught there, spoke of early
school days at the 2001 reunion.
McDonald spoke of the original Mount Zion
one-room school which was located near the entrance to the McDonald farm,
not far from Sinking Springs Road. "Actually it was in the middle of where
Route 16 is now," he said. "It was built in 1885 and was torn down by Oak
Hartshorn. He tore it down (about 1924) and built a house on Phillip's
McDonald said the "new" one-room school was built behind the Mt. Zion
Church Cemetery on the Barnes Run Road in 1924. "It was one of the last
one room schools to close in the county." McDonald said he was the last
county school superintendent who was elected by popular vote. "I was
elected after Hanning Poling and T. C. Cain. It was a Democrat vs.
Stemple said the kids would often wander from the school playground and
explore the Mt. Zion Cave, located in the hollow between the school and the
church. "During World War II we collected tin foil and milkweed pods for the
war cause," he said. The feathery seeds were used in life preservers.
"Most of all I remember the field meets, which were both academic and
athletic. We would compete against many of the one-room schools in the
area and the winners would go to Grantsville to compete with the 'big'
schools," he said. The contests often included hoop rolling, sack racing,
one-legged race and "just plain races," according to Stemple.
Stemple said the Mount Zion School often had between 30-35 students.
McDonald recalled his late wife Mary teaching the school, in addition to
Tessie Poling, Garrett Kelley, Ernest Kelley and Irene Gunn, among many
Irene Gunn shares teaching experience in 2001
The late Bernard McDonald (L) and Charlie Duskey (R)
Eloise Gunn Divers (L) and "Dink" Riddel Duskey (R) attended the one-room school