BUCKEYE SCHOOL

 

The school was built in 1856 on Buckeye Prairie, a small community twelve miles south of Taylorville.  The school served continuously until 1948, when the district was consolidated with Taylorville Community Unit School District #3.  The building was moved to a nearby farm and used for grain storage.  It was moved to the present site in 1982, after it was purchased by a member of the Historical Society.

 

It was dedicated on September 3, 1984, to Harry Wilhour, a former student and director at the society.  Harry headed the fund drive to move the school.

 

In his autobiography, “REMINISCENCES”, Thomas Lakin, whose family settled Buckeye Prairie in 1854, when he was nine years old; tells about the school.  “Oh, but we Buckeyes were proud of our new school house.  We urchins, having been deprived of school so long, felt the need of an education most keenly and bent our every energy toward acquiring it.”  He goes on to explain the importance of the school to the community; “The Buckeye School was the nucleus until after the Civil War for all kinds of public gatherings, chief and most interesting and helpful of which was the debating society.  In this society which met during the winter, old and young men took an active part and many important questions were discussed and forever settled.   People came from miles around to hear these debates and listen to the official organ of the society, The Clarion, which often bawled people out as badly as the modern yellow journals.  It was also here at the school that the first preaching services were held by the Methodist people, and great revivals resulted in the conversion of many young men and women.

 

History shows that the rural schools of America had a definite impact on the development of the country.