A number of the children, who lived in the eastern part of the district, had gathered around the door, eager to enter the building. I had walked exactly four miles. I brushed some of the dust from my clothing and asked them to remain out of doors for a few more minutes. I wanted to experience the transforming power, that a group of enthusiastic children would have on the interior of the building.
I walked into the vestibule, against the north wall was a large pile of wood and near the south wall, a pump and dipper. The floor of the schoolroom proper was made of rough wide boards, the wainscoating high with large spikes, driven in at regular intervals, about three feet above the floor, A large rusty box stove, four rows of double seats, a home made recitation bench, a cheap desk and chair for the teacher furnished the room. A small black board hung on the east wall and there were windows on the south and north sides.
After freshing up a bit, at the pump, I opened the door. I have never seen more happiness and enthusiasm in children than this crowd displayed. Hanging their pails on the big spikes, they covered them with their wraps and took their old seats, ready to began at the signal. Very early in the term we began to anticipate the need of entertainment during stormy weather, so I brought from home a strong jumping rope, bean bags and story books. The children furnished small balls, jack-stones, jack knives, marbles and doll clothes, quilt patches and carpet raags for the girls, the furniture was moved and we had quite an indoor play ground.
We had very good times, working, playing, and eating together. The girls and boys did me untold good and my prayer is that I might have helped them to become good citizens. And so another school year rolled along.
Sincerely yours, Anna O'Beck.
The school room was lighted by kerosene wall lamps with reflectors. The stove stood towards the back of the room and had a shield around it. A hand bell was used to call the children in. The school had a wood shed. Some teachers of the school would room and board at a home close to the school and go home on weekends.. In those days the school year was only eight months long. The school had no piano, so the home across the street from the school would let them use theirs for singing.
I hope you used your imagination on this trip back through time and realized how hard it was for some people. Rosy Mound school did burn twice and both times it was rebuilt on the same site, a little better and each time with much needed improvements.