This is a follow-up to the past few articles of the Hunter-Tannersville-Central School yearbooks. It will travel back to the centralization of our schools.
As told by Historian Doris West Brooks in a small (undated) booklet concerning the school history, “In 1931 there were 19 small community schools in the townships of Jewett, Hunter and Lexington. Some were located in places most of us have never heard of — Foot-of-the-Ridge, Ingraham and Tannery. These schools went only to the 8th grade. To receive a higher education the children had to be transported to Hunter or Tannersville, both of which had grades 1-12. Some of the students from the out-lying districts even boarded in town during the school year.
The biggest controversy over the new centralization was not whether it should be, but, rather where the new school should be located.” This letter relates to that controversy, in which we all know the decision.
Our school district encompasses 164 square miles and in the 1930s transportation was not what it is today.
ATTENTION OF OUR CITIZENS FROM THE CITIZENS COMMITTEE OF HAINES FALLS, sent in 1934.
“To our taxpayers, rent payers, and parents with children at school. Serious consideration must be given to an election called for the purpose of voting for a location of a Central School, whether at Tannersville or Hunter.
We should look at this matter in the light of what is best for the interests of our community.
The proposed site at Tannersville is the present High School building where our children in the past have received their high school educations.
Hunter village has two sites proposed, either would be much more costly than the Tannersville site. Tannersville is four or five miles nearer Haines Falls than Hunter, or, a round trip difference of nine miles a day, also a difference in time of forty minutes a day.
In the matter of taxes, a central school building would cost $32,000 (today’s money $620,020) more to build on the proposed sites in Hunter village than the site at Tannersville. A sewerage system of $20,000; land, $10,000; and an extra bus, $2,000; plus, an additional charge of $5,000 maintenance yearly (?) over the Tannersville site. These figures are from the architect and in possession of the Board of Education.
It would be more to our interests to have the school at Tannersville, as it no doubt would mean the building up of Tannersville towards Haines Falls, whereas a school at Hunter would mean the building up of Hunter towards Tannersville. This is how it has worked out in other communities.
We are taking a step that should be given deep study, a step that will affect our community and its citizens for a great many years.
We strongly urge all our citizens to go to the election polls and vote. The election is to be held on Thursday, April 27th, between 10am and 5pm at the Tannersville Village Hall, located at Main and Railroad Avenue. Transportation, if needed, will be furnished. Qualifications for voting are a citizen of the U.S., four months in Greene County, thirty days in the election district, a taxpayer, rent payer, or parents with children at school. We consider it our duty to call these pertinent facts to the attention of our friends and neighbors.” Thank you.
The school board members dated September 5, 1933 were J. Frank Lackey, President; Benj. C. Merwin, C. B. Layman, Egbert Dibbell, Robert s. Tuttle.
Thanks for reading. Please, any corrections or concerns, Hunterhistorican@gmail.com, or call 518-589-4130.