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The History of our Public Schools
Wyandotte County, Kansas

1844
2012

 

 

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Park School

Park SchoolLocation:  24th and Grandview Boulevard (approx. 230-248 N. 24th St.)

Map of 246 N 24th St
Kansas City, KS 66102-4743

Picture Gallery

Architectural Blue Prints and/or Plot Plan of School Building

PTA records for the years 1912 through 1973 can be found in the Kansas Room at the KCKs Public Library, 625 Minnesota Avenue.

NOTE: Rose/Peterson, Architects - There are two structures that have been attributed to W. W. Rose and one structure to Rose and Peterson which have been examined in this survey.  The buildings include Park Elementary School (demolished) and Clara Barton Elementary School (demolished).  At the time of this writing, adequate documentation to corroborate these attributions has not been found.  Welborn Elementary School, although strongly resembling several Rose designs, was found to have been designed by the firm of White and Dean in 1923.

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Article from the Kansan, 15 May 1972

"Park Elementary School will cease to be a classroom facility this month as the approximately 160 students in that attendance area transfer to Frances Willard Elementary School nearby.

After 66 years, countless numbers of students have allowed its halls at 24th and Grandview Blvd.

They will have the opportunity to take one last look at an open house from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday, sponsored by the PTA and staff.  There will be a brief program at 3 p.m.

Altho the building will be closed to students after this year, it will continue to be used as a facility for consultants and traveling teachers by the school board.

A history compiled by Mrs. Etta Blanche Dahlgren, principal at Park since 1970, lists the school as opening in September 1907.  Wyandotte County was organized in 1859, she notes with the area divided into school districts shortly thereafter. 

The Park area probably was in what was known as District 2.  The district paid the city school board $300 for the year and the 28 students attended classes in what is now the Prescott building.

In 1904 a new district was formed and in a list of schools from that era Midland Park District is noted.  It is believed this may have been the origin of the Park name.

In 1905 an election was ordered to issue bonds to build a school and a site was chosen and purchased for $1,850.  Work on a 4-room brick school building began the following year at a cost of $8,000.

The need for more space became apparent by 1908 as flooding in the Armourdale area brought an influx of people in this area of the city.  Additional space was rented in a nearby church until a $10,000 bond election for an addition was passed.  The school board paid a neighbor $5 for his permission to allow material to be hauled over his lot.  The school board is said to have rented two "hacks" to carry voters to the election.

The annex was completed in 1909. 

The school is thought to have entered the city system in 1910 with W. J. McGary named supervisor."

SUMMARY

1904 - September 14:. District No. 44 formed. Officers were J B Jenkins, J Denny and Ora J DIllon.  When District 44 to the west of the city wanted their children in Kansas City schools, the board set the tuition at $600. 

October 1. Charles E Thompson, county superintendent, defined boundaries. Line crosses Matoon Road, South along Matoon to Muncie Road, west, and south to Kaw River. Created by the Board of County Commissioners. Where Orville crosses Kansas City Western Electric Railway, north to Orient tracks, to 18th, south to Orville, then west.

1905 - April 17:. Election ordered to issue bonds for building school. Bids for site submitted.

July: Kansas City Board to accept 35 pupils or less for $600 a year.

July 1: Choose site of one acre in Block 3, Clifton Hills Addition to KCKs. Offered by Industrial Investment Company.

1906 - February: Board met at "temporary" school building. Decided to erect four-room brick. Loan from Kansas State Bank.

1907 - William E Harris, architect. Teachers hired. To open in September.

1908 - July 16: School crowded. Annex needed.

July 30: Four-room annex to be built at once.

August 21: To see "money loaners" for new addition.

September: Rooms to be rented to relieve crowded conditions. Annex to be built when bonds voted. C L Crippin, principal.

September 14:  Decided to petition for bond election.

September 25:  District 44 rented church building east of school on 24th street. To buy 50 seats.

October 3:   McAnany and Alden, legal advisors.

October 9:  Irregularity in opening and closing time of polls. Attorney needed to settle matter. October 13. Clerk refused to sign records. Records concerning election ordered expunged. Bonds for $10,000 passed. Four-room addition built. J C Taylor, architect and builder.

1909 - August 18:   Hired Principal Crippin to clean building, wash windows and woodwork, scrub and oil floors. Blackboards in old building painted. Paid two dollars per day. Also took census. Annex completed.

October. Fire escapes purchased. 296 enrolled.

1910 - Annexed to KCKs school system.

1912 - October 4:   First PTA. Mrs. Lee Vaughn, first president.

1913 - April 4:  PTA plans to present a petition from Park, Oakland, and Kerr to the board concerning the establishment of a manual training center at Park.

1919 - April 3:  PTA took a membership in the Visiting Nurses Association.

1920 - Sanitary facilities installed.  PTA records indicate that the Superintendent of Schools was given authority to issue certificates to children of lawful working age.  Child Labor Laws

1923 - Spring.  Park School won the Chamber of Commerce Essay Contest. PTA records indicate that a school nurse was employed.

1928 - January. Organization of pre-school group

1935 - May. The only Gold Seal Award given to a grade school for magazine subscriptions.

1937 - PTA records indicate that there are 149 families represented in Park School, a yearly enrollment of 208, and 116 members in the PTA.    WPA begins hot lunch program.

1939 - At Park School, Miss Ella Mahaffie, retiring principal, was honored at a tea.  Newspaper articles drew attention to the Mahaffie family's link to pioneer days when the Mahaffie Inn housed travelers at the first stage coach stop 1/4 mile east of Olathe on old 50 Highway (Santa Fe Trail).

Mahaffie Farmstead and Stage Coach Stop - 110 N. Kansas City Rd.,  Olathe, Kan. - 913-782-6972
Located in Olathe, it was used as a Sante Fe Trail Stagecoach stop, and the basement was a dining room for travelers. Built in 1857

1948:  PTA records indicate:  school enrollment - 245; families - 167; PTA membership -230; graduates - 25; student safety patrol members - 24; vaccinations - 61; hearing tests - 87; teeth OK - 76; dental corrections - 59.

1966 - PTA records indicate 186 students enrolled.

1973 - School closed in spring of 1972; pupils reassigned to Frances Willard.

1978 - Property offered for sale but unsold as of January 1, 1978.  Demolition contract awarded June 12, 1978.  Building razed.

1992 - Meeting held with city officials and community development concerning property of Park School site.

Concern of property owner at 249 N 25th about deterioration of retaining wall. Offer to sell property to Board of Education as settlement claim. 

PRINCIPALS

1908-13 - C L Crippin / 1913-39 - Ella Mahaffie (daughter of the J B Mahaffie, owner of the first stagecoach station on the Santa Fe Trail after leaving Westport, Missouri.  Landmark in Olathe, Johnson County, Kansas.) / 1939-58 - Mattie Glasgow / 1958-62 - Ruby Crary / 1962-70 - Pearl Hay / 1970-73 - Etta Blanche Dahlgreen

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Contact the History Webmaster - Patricia Adams

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

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