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Wyandotte County, Kansas




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McAlpine School

1886 Map of Wyandotte County


Building opened:  1886  (one of the original 9 schools - Consolidation Act of 1886)

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From KCKS Public School System, 1819-1961 by Nellie McGuinn, copyright USD 500 Feb, 1966

When the Wyandotte Town Company was formed in 1856, one of the first members was John W. McAlpine.  The following year John McAlpine's nephew, Nicholas McAlpine, came to Wyandotte to serve as clerk for his uncle.  He later married Maria, daughter of Matthew Walker.  Nichols laid out two real estate additions, one to Armourdale, the other to Wyandotte, north of Central Avenue near Eighth and Ninth Streets.

On August 16, 1886, the Board of Education bought of Alfred Wiston and his wife four lots in Block 2 of McAlpine's Addition to old Wyandotte for the sum of $1200.  The site lay between Parnell on the north and Livingstone on the south, now known respectively as Riverview and Reynolds.  To the east was Walnut (Walnut in 1966) and on the west, Ninth Street.  P. H. Knoblock on August 20, 1886, was awarded a contract to build a two-room frame building facing Parnell Avenue (Riverview in 1966).  In 1886, there was no sewer, water, or gas facilities in either the adjacent streets or alleys.  Stove heat would be used.  Water pipes and cisterns would be installed in the schools being erected.  The board named the school in honor of the real estate developer (Nicholas McAlpine).

1894:  The spread of scarlet fever and diphtheria alarmed everyone.  Dr. Cornell, county physician, ordered isolation for five weeks for children with infectious diseases.  A Dr. Swartz wrote about sanitary remedies for schools.  McAlpine and Everett Schools closed because of diphtheria and some deaths occurred in the vicinity of Everett.

1897:  Until the schools obtained financial relief, shifts were made in classes.  The 8A class at Reynolds and Armstrong moved to Riverview.  Morse's 8B transferred to Armourdale School, and the 5B at McAlpine went to Riverview and Central.  A committee sent to Topeka was assured of legislative help with money problems.  The board first appealed for a $75,000 bond election, but later reduced the sum to $60,000.

1900:  A four-room brick school on the McAlpine site was needed.  The Hawthorne building plans would be used for the new McAlpine. The old McAlpine building was sold on May 7 for $50.  School closed on May 10 for McAlpine children, as space had to be cleared for the new building.  F. A. Thompson was awarded the contract.  In August, 1900, Herman Koenig deeded to the board an additional twenty-five feet, Lot 15, Block 2 of McAlpine's Addition to Wyandotte.  The new school was named Irving for the writer, Washington Irving, on May 24, 1900.  When the new building was occupied in September, it was so crowded that a basement room had to be used.

[Annotation:  Thus, McAlpine School ceased to be and the new school was "Irving".)

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William G. Cutler's History of the State of Kansas, 1883

NICHOLAS McALPINE, dealer in real estate and proprietor of McAlpine's Addition to Armourdale, as well as McAlpine's Addition to Wyandotte City. He came to Wyandotte in 1857, acting as clerk for John McAlpine, his uncle. He afterward embarked in the saw mill and flour mill business until 1861. He, with B. Washington, built the first flour mill in Wyandotte County. At the beginning of the war, returned to Pittsburgh, Penn., and for four years was employed as Teller in the First National Bank, returning to Kansas in 1865, formed a partnership with Dan Killin, taking contracts to build portions of the Missouri Pacific; also Central Branch of the Union Pacific Railroad. He was elected City Treasurer in 1886; afterward member of the City Council. He was appointed by the County Commissioner to act as Treasurer of Wyandotte County for one year. Was elected to said office by the Democrats in 1867 one term; again elected in 1871 one term; re-elected to the same office in 1873, serving in all seven years as County Treasurer, since which time he has been engaged in the real estate business very successfully. He was born near Belfast, Ireland, April 6, 1835, receiving his education there. Came to Pittsburgh, Penn., in 1853; during four years thereafter, went through all the routine of banking in the Pittsburgh Trust Company and Exchange Bank. Was married in June, 1866, to Miss Maria Walker, of Wyandotte, Kan. They have three children - Robert L., Josie S. and Mary A. He is a member of Ivanhoe Commandery, No. 1, A., F. & A. M., and of the Presbyterian congregation. Mr. McAlpine has ever been an active worker for the best interests of Wyandotte City and county, and is well and favorably known, having a host of friends.

History of Wyandotte County Kansas and its people ed. and comp. by Perl W. Morgan. Chicago, The Lewis publishing company, 1911


The Kansas City, Kansas, Town Company was formed in 1868, by Silas Armstrong, David E. James, Dr, George B. Wood, Luther H. Wood, William Weir, Thomas Ewing Jr., T. H. Swope and N. McAlpine. The town site was situated upon parts of fractional sections Nos. 10, 11 and 14, town 11, south of range 25 east, lying north of the old bed of Turkey creek, east of the Kansas river, south of the Missouri river, and bounded on the east by the state line between Missouri and Kansas, and comprised the following named tracts, viz: Two tracts of land belonging to George B. Wood; two tracts of land belonging to D. E. James; one tract belonging jointly to George B. Wood and N. McAlpine, and one piece of land lying between the lands of Thomas Ewing on the south and lands of D. E. James on the north, between Armstrong street and Kansas river. The site was surveyed by John McGee, civil engineer, April 24, 1869, and recorded with the register of deeds of Wyandotte county May 3, 1869.

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History Site created on December 02, 2002
Page last updated: 23-Apr-2014

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