Monday, February 26, 2007

What it Took for an Eight Grade Education in 1895

My mother , Ieula Ann Dick Baird (3-6-1885 - 12-6-1873) was 10 years old in 1895. Her father (Charles Dick) had died when she was a less than two and while her mother was pregnant with the younger of her two brothers, William and Irvin. Mama also had 4 sisters, Mattie, Fannie, Cora and Molly.
(Picture above of Eight Grade Classroon in New York in 1895)

All the formal education of my mother and her siblings took place in a one room school house in Fayette County Georgia, when the South was still trying to recover from the destruction and deprivation of the Civil War.

Mama told me many times about how she loved and revered her teacher, Professor Cullpepper. She was so appreciative of the fact that he had taught her all the Arithmetic and into Algebra before she had to stop school to go to work.

I began the study of Algebra in the Eight grade. Mama's school did not have grade levels as today but probably had about a Ninth or at least an Eight grade education?

You might be interested , as many are, in the eighth-grade final exam (1895 Salina , Kansas , USA .) It was taken from the original document on file at the Smokey Valley Genealogical Society and Library in Salina , and reprinted by the Salina Journal.

The 8th Grade Final Exam: Salina , KS - 1895
GRAMMAR: (Time, one hour)1. Give nine rules for the use of capital letters.2. Name the parts of speech and define those that have no modifications. 3. Define verse, stanza and paragraph4. What are the principal parts of a verb? Give principal parts of 'lie,''play,' and 'run..' 5. Define case; illustrate each case.6 What is punctuation? Give rules for principal marks of punctuation. 7 - 10. Write a composition of about 150 words and show therein that you understand the practical use of the rules of grammar.

ARITHMETIC: (Time,1 hour 15 minutes)1. Name and define the Fundamental Rules of Arithmetic.2. A wagon box is 2 ft. Deep, 10 feet long, and 3 ft. Wide. How many bushels of wheat will it hold? 3. If a load of wheat weighs 3,942 lbs., what is it worth at 50cts/bushel, deducting 1,050 lbs. For tare? 4. District No 33 has a valuation of $35,000. What is the necessary levy to carry on a school seven months at $50 per month, and have $104 for incidentals? 5. Find the cost of 6,720 lbs. Coal at $6.00 per ton.6. Find the interest of $512.60 for 8 months and 18 days at 7 percent. 7. What is the cost of 40 boards 12 inches wide and 16 ft.. Long at $20 per metre?8. Find bank discount on $300 for 90 days (no grace) at 10 percent.9.. What is the cost of a square farm at $15 per acre, the distance of which is 640 rods? 10. Write a Ban k Check, a Promissory Note, and a Receipt

U.S. HISTORY:(Time, 45 minutes)1. Give the epochs into which U.S. History is divided2. Give an account of the discovery of America by Columbus 3. Relate the causes and results of the Revolutionary War.4. Show the territorial growth of the United States 5. Tell what you can of the history of Kansas 6. Describe three of the most prominent battles of the Rebellion. 7. Who were the following: Morse, Whitney, Fulton , Bell , Lincoln , Penn, and Howe?8. Name events connected with the following dates: 1607, 1620, 1800, 1849, 1865.

ORTHOGRAPHY:(Time, one hour) [Spelling??] 1. What is meant by the following: alphabet, phonetic, orthography, etymology, syllabication2. What are elementary sounds? How classified?3. What are the following, and give examples of each: trigraph, subvocals, diphthong, cognate letters, linguals 4. Give four substitutes for caret 'u.' (HUH?)5. Give two rules for spelling words with final 'e.' Name two exceptions under each rule.6. Give two uses of silent letters in spelling. Illustrate each. 7. Define the following prefixes and use in connection with a word: bi, dis-mis, pre, semi, post, non, inter, mono, sup.8. Mark diacritically and divide into syllables the following, and name the sign that indicates the sound: card, ball, mercy, sir, odd, cell, rise, blood, fare, last. 9. Use the following correctly in sentences: cite, site, sight, fane, f ain, feign, vane , vain, vein, raze, raise, rays.10. Write 10 words frequently mispronounced and indicate pronunciation by use of diacritical marks and by syllabication.

GEOGRAPHY (Time, one hour)1 What is climate? Upon what does climate depend?2. How do you account for the extremes of climate in Kansas ? 3. Of what use are rivers? Of what use is the ocean?4. Describe the mountains of North America 5. Name and describe the following: Monrovia , Odessa , Denver , Manitoba , Hecla , Yukon , St. Helena, Juan Fernandez, Aspinwall and Orinoco 6. Name and locate the principal trade centers of the U.S. Name all the republics of Europe and give the capital of each.8. Why is the Atlantic Coast colder than the Pacific in the same latitude? 9. Describe the process by which the water of the ocean returns to the sources of rivers.10. Describe the movements of the earth. Give the inclination of the earth.

Note that the exam took 5 hours to complete.
This is an eye-opener to the saying " he had only an 8 grade education"
I don't have all the answers! Do you?

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Boar Tusk Creek.

I have known about "Bo Tush Creek" about as long as I have known there was a boy named "Charles Colmbus Shaw." But it was years later that the road to Bo Tush was paved and a street sign was installed that I discovered it was Boar Tusk.

Charles was the oldest of five boys of Grady and Lillian Shaw and was named for his two grandfathers, Charles Wilkerson and Columbus Shaw.

The first picnic Charles and I had after we were married was to "Bo Tush Creek." It was over 70 years ago, but I remember Charles and I walking hand in hand across a long grassy field. In our other hand we each carried a small bag of sandwiches and cookies for a picnic ay "Bo Tush."

Charles told me about all the fun and family outings he had enjoyed with his parents and brothers going back to the time when he was a toddler.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Transfiguration Sunday.

I heard the story of a General and his aid, a second Lieutenant who were traveling by train when a beautiful young girl and her grandmother boarded and sat down in the seat facing them.

As the train moved along, soon it went through a long dark tunnel and everything was pitch darkness and silence....but suddenly there was the sound of a kiss and a slap.

And the young lady was thinking....”I suppose I should be flattered that that handsome young man kissed me...but I’m sorry grandmother slapped him."

The Grandmother was thinking...”I suppose I should not be surprised that the young man was so fresh as to kiss my beautiful granddaughter...but I’m glad she had the intestinal fortitude to slap him."

The General was thinking...”I suppose I can not blame the lieutenant for stealing a kiss from such a beautiful girl...but I wonder why she made the mistake of slapping me instead
of him"

Only the Young Lieutenant knew the truth...and was wonderful it was to kiss such a lovely girl and also have the opportunity to slap the General! "

It is easy to misunderstand events around us. We often believe the lie and reject the truth. So we are once again privileged to gather around the word of God who is the way the truth and the life.

Our Scripture lesson today is about the transfiguration of Jesus (1) which is a call
to re-examine and re-emphasize the majestic glory of Christ.

Next Sunday the church around the world will be looking at the cross of Jesus ....the central theme of the Gospel…and it will be only 6 weeks away for Easter. Easter is the greatest event in human history when Jesus Christ rose from the dead and was seen alive by many witnesses. This Easter message is the great truth that what we call death does not have the final word over what God calls life.

In Revelation 1: 7 , 8 we read “Behold Christ cometh with clouds...and every eye shall see Him...this Lord which was…and is and is to come...the Almighty. “

So this Jesus whom one day ”every eye shall see in all His glory, " in our Bible lesson in Mark was revealed in transfigured glory to Peter, James and John, and through these first witnesses is witnessing to us today!

The word, Transfiguration means “metamorphosis” which means a change from our essential nature. Epiphany, on the church calendar begins on January 6., twelve days after Christmas Day and celebrates, the time the Wise Men followed the Bethlehem star all the way to the infant Jesus who was revealed to them as the Savior. Epiphany means revelation and today, February 19, 2012 is the last Sunday of Epiphany, when Jesus was revealed on the Mount of Transfiguration in glory and power.

Ash Wednesday is the beginning of the 40 days before Easter, not counting the Sundays. A time the church sets aside to contemplate more fully the Cross of Jesus.

The city of New Orleans is gearing up for the Mardi Gras,. I read last year about a couple of men who were in New Orleans for a conference and strolled into the Bourbon Street area after their meeting on Tuesday night. They said it was scary as they found themselves jammed so tightly in amid thousands and swept along in the midst of utter chaos and frightening disorder, with drunken men shouting obscenities and lunging at teenagers while women hung over balconies and in exchange for gaudy beads were stripping for the crowd.

The revelers at Mardi Gras often demonstrate the kind of destructiveness and danger that happen when human sin gets mixed with alcohol and other drugs and goes unchecked. Mardi Gras is a mostly pagan celebration of Strove Tuesday…or Fat Tuesday...when people feast on meat and high fat foods because Lent is thought to be a time of fasting and meatless meals and self denial.

Of course, this is one of the many misunderstandings and miss uses of the wonderful good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ....this combining a little truth with a lot of error.

HH Farmer is quoted as saying, “God our Father is absolute demand and absolute succor,” We like to hear about the succor, the comfort and God’s great love for us. But God’s demands are a part of His great love for us.

Calvin said....If God says “no” to is His love. As parents, we show our love when we say “no” to our children when they want to eat candy instead of vegetables....or when they want to play in the road instead of their back yard.

God our Father set’s standards and He makes us very uncomfortable when we run away or swagger around with pride and assume self -sufficiency.

Some years ago....we heard a great deal about God as our co-pilot But God is more than a co-pilot to help us reach our destination. We want to work out our plans…our flight plans…and then say…”By the way, Lord, bless my life, bless my plans."

In the 70’s the popular book “I’m OK and You’re OK” was to build self esteem . We hear a great deal these days about self esteem. As a timid child in Sunday School, I do not remember ever hearing about “self esteem building.” But when I was told and really heard that I was so loved by God and so important to God that Jesus died for me, I knew I was important.

God is revealed truly as our friend ...but only after we know Him as Savior and Lord. The limitless love that the Father communicates is not sentimental and coddling. We have tried our best to create a God who helps us, loves us, ...but does not question our values and priorities. We talk to Him when we are sick or in trouble but deny His authority over our lives.

Transfiguration Sunday and the last Sunday of Epiphany is February 19 this year. This last Sunday of Epiphany celebrates when Jesus was revealed on the Mount of Transfiguration in glory and power with Peter, James and John as witnesses.

The God who loves us, calls us to obedience as we call our children away from a hot stove or away from playing near a high traffic road. When we understand that God’s laws are the Maker's instructions that come with the body and the psyche, we rejoice in these instructions for real life!

Peter and James and John were with Jesus on the Mount of Transfiguration and with them was Elijah of Mt Carmel and Moses of Mt Sinai. It was a Mountain Top experience! But Jesus knew and sought to prepare them for one more Mountain to climb...Mount Calvary!

1. Mark 9: 2-9

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Sunday Seven

1. Sunday, February 18, was a good day. I finished lunch at 12 noon with a couple who are lay leaders at our church.

The church furnace is out so a newly purchased furnace will arrive and be installed Tuesday. Meantime we met at the home of one of the church leaders and I was their guest for a great lunch.

2. Arriving home a little after 12:30, my son-in-love Gregg and grandson Andrew brought in a delicious beef roasted to prefection, with mashed potatoes and gravy. My daughter-in love Sheila, son Terry and friend Mike arrived with a wonderful salad.

3. A great time was had by all around our dining room table.

4. Mike brought me a box of light and dark chocolates. Not just any box of candy, but the famous and fabulous Esther Price candy from Centerville Ohio, Mike's home town.

5. I was privileged to go with Terry, Sheila and Mike to the City Auditorim to see Les Miserables performed by some high school players.

6. To top the long day off, at seven, I went to church and heard my 27 year old grandson Andrew speak about his work with YWAM (Youth With A Mission) and tell the interesting and inspiring story about his recent brain stem stroke that put him in ICU for weeks in Los Angeles. I wish all the family could have been there to hear Andrew.

7. The number seven is an impotant number in the Bible denoting perfection and completion. It is also an important number to me. My precious husband used to say, "If I could have searched the ramparts of heaven, I could not have found more perfect children than Janice, Joan, Terrell, Carol, Deborah, Beth or David." Each individual and all together are outstanding in their own way. And this is only the beginning.

8. P.S. I am blessed to have reached age 84 today with some health issues but still in my right mind. (Well, as "right mind" as any of us are, who keep blogging.)

Many people do not have the privilege of "old age" and more and more others seem to be dealing with Alzhiemers.

Friday, February 02, 2007

The Tree Planting.

I think that I shall never see, a poem as lovely as a tree." I thought of Joyce Kilmer's well known poem this week when Ann Long, a friend from Grantville sent me a photo of the Methodist parsonage in Grantville where I had lived ( 1990-1993).
Ann wanted me to see a picture of the tall Tulip tree that had been only a tiny sapling when we planted it in the front yard of the house while I was pastor of the Grantvile First United Methodist Church.

On my Web Log, I have planted a few poems that I ("a fool like me") made. But Kilmer is right, "only God can make a tree."

I used the term "we planted." But I did little more than watch that Spring day when Ann Long and Kathleen Ray, brought their Sunday school class of little girls to the Methodist church parsonage to plant the Tulip tree.

Here they came...Ann Long and Kathleen Ray, (a former Missionary and talented teacher) with hole diggers and shovels and ferilizer and a tree small enough for primary age children to plant.
The four to six years old girls, included Mandie Crews, Sarah Hunter, Katie Hunter, Sarah Bonner, Cathy Smith, and toddlers Morgan Crews and Annalee Hunter.

As the tree grew, so grew the children. The six year olds are now in college and the children who were toddlers then are now seniors in high school.
The picture of Grantville United Methodist Church to the left, shows the proximity of the church to the parsonage as it looked in the 1990's when I lived in the wonderful little town of Grantville. (1990-1993). I could write a book about my three years living among those beautiful people until I reached the age of mandatory returement.

One memorable Sunday while there, we saw a miracle when the Grantville church family had worked with me to filled the large sanctuary and the balcony to overflow in celebration of the church's Sesquecentenial, 150 years in service to God and the world.
For weeks before the Sesquecentenial, the "Sew and Sew" women in the church met at the parsonage with me to make tiny 'church dolls" as a door prize for every woman and girl who attended. For the men and boys we found a great buy and bought wooden train whistles. This was in memory of the 12 noon train that blew it whistles as it passed through Granville every Sunday at 12 noon to announce the end of the Morning Worship Service!
The Grantville parsonage is a beautifully furnished and comfortable home provided for the pastorial family. We could walk out the front door of the pastor's home, a few feet across the road into the back door of the church building.

I could also walk down the hill every early morning to pick up church mail and any personal mail. The Post Office was a quick gathering place for all of us on our way to work. I talked with the Baptist pastor and deacons, all of whom were gracious enough to welcome me to town. "Grace" does make us gracious enough to love one another even when we have different understandings of a Christian woman's place in the church.

The Grantville UMC parsonage was also conveniently located to City Hall. During my three years as a resident of Grantville, I walked down that hill to "open with prayer" many of the city hall's monthly meetings. Do you agree, Kilmer's poem has a place in this tree planting story?

"I think that I shall never see.
A poem lovely as a tree.
A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the earth's sweet flowing breast;
A tree that looks at God all day,
And lifts her leafy arms to pray;

A tree that may in Summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair;
Upon whose bosom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.
Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree. "
-- Joyce Kilmer

Field Days and Ball Games in the 1930's

This is a brief view into family history during the South's slow economic recovery from the Civil War.

In the thirties our school participated in "field days" with competition between classes and between schools. This included relay races, 100-yard dashes, high jumps, broad jumps, etc.

My brothers, Charlie, Tom, and Jack, excelled in all the races as did I, their youngest sister. My brother, Tom, was one of the fastest (probably the fastest) runner in our school. It seemed Tom often ran in his regular pants with shirttail flying rather than putting on the shorts and sleeveless tee which was the usual attire for field day competition.

One of the family stories is of Tom winning the race for the school and winning a great deal of local fame one time running for our school in his regular school clothes. I was younger and did not remember the ocassion that became a family story. I thought it was "modesty" as Tom was indeed a modest man of few words.

A few years before he died, I asked Tom why he ran the race that Field Day in his regular clothes. He said he had to rush home to lift Papa out of bed and had rushed back to school because they expected him to run in the race. Apparently, he appeared on the school grounds just in time to run the race.

Tom was stronger than Jack or Charlie. So it fell his lot, or more likely he voluntered after Papa became disabled, to lift Papa out of bed and then back into bed. Tom told me he would go to school every morning and answer the roll call. Soon after, he would leave school and run the relative short distance home to lift Papa out of bed and into a chair and later run back to lift him up out of the chair and back into bed. When Tom told me the story, he told it as if it was only what any boy would do for his Dad.

Jack was an exceptionally good basketball player. I was on his cheering team seeing him shoot the ball into the basket from the center of the court many times. In those days height was not the primary criteria for basketball as it is today. Jack was very fast and coordinated in basketball as well as baseball.

My friends and I walked to the baseball park every afternoon during ball season. Tom was the star pitcher, and Jack excelled as the catcher. They worked well together.

I often heard people remark that Tom was the best baseball pitcher around and could make pro if he wanted to. In fact, Tom did 'go pro' for a short time. He was brought to North Carolina to try out for the St. Louis Cardinals as a pitcher. I think he would have been successful, but he got homesick and asked to be released.

Our father was bedridden for over a year before he died and was lovingly cared for by Mama. I did not know until a few years before Tome died that he came home from school every day to lift Papa , who was sufferng from a heart and kidney disease (Brights desease) and so swollen he could not walk.

In those depression days, it took the whole family to make ends meet. Most boys and girls un our town went to work as teenagers. Everyone felt they had to go to work as soon as possible.

After work, Tom continued to play on the town baseball team into young adulthood. Baseball was a popular sport between towns. Companies would hire good players for jobs just to have them play on their baseball teams. This is how Tom met Rowena, who became his precious bride. Rowena, lived with her family in Rockmart, about 50 miles northwest. Goodyear Company in Rockmart offered Tom a better job than he had with Bibb Manufacturing Company in Porterdale to get him to pitch baseball for their team. Tom moved to Rockmart, met Rowena, and as they say, the rest is history.

From Soup To Desert

What is the best thing you’ve ever won as a prize?
Right now, I cannot remember winning more than a few door prizes...
like tickets for meals for a restaurant or boxes of candy?
Name something you do that is a waste of time.
I have recently became more attentinve to the rapid passing of time so leave the television off much of the time but
I still check email too often on days when i am home most of the day.
Main Course
In what year of your life did you change the most?
In 1986 when I, who had been a wife for 47 years sudenly became a widow.

Where is a place you consider to be very tranquil? One end of the my sofa in the living room where I can look out the
window and read the Upper Room and my Bible early mornings.