Merriam in Johnson County, Kansas — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)
Education in Merriam
Merriam Historic Plaza Walking Path
From 1837 to 1869 the Quaker Mission educated the children from area Indian settlements. The early settlers of Campbellton sent their children to the Hickory Grove School, which was located near present day Shawnee Mission North High School.
As the population grew, the need for a local school was widely felt. For a short time, school was held in various buildings. In 1871, school was held for one term in a building called The Gin Mill across the street from the town's hotel.
School District Number 79, known as Merriam School District, was formed, and a new building was constructed and opened in 1872. The two-story yellow brick structure was a sophisticated model of an old time schoolhouse and included a bell tower and bell. The first school teacher, Ike Short, taught all eight grades for fifty dollars per month. The building was used for classes and as a community center until 1911.
After the trolley line was built and the local population swelled, a larger building was badly needed. In 1911, the first unit of a new building for the Merriam School was constructed of native limestone. The building was two stories high and housed both a grade school and small high schol. In 1922, all the grade schools in the area consolidated and fed into the newly established Shawnee Mission Rural High School District. High
Two additions were made to the Merriam school in 1937 and 1950. The Merriam School was one of the first grade schools in Johnson County and the twenty-fifth in the state of Kansas.
About the Images
Recess at Merriam School -
The first permanent school building in Merriam operated from 1872 to 1911. Students shown playing volleyball at recess at second Merriam School.
Laying the Cornerstone -
The community gathered at the construction site of the second Merriam School building, built in 1911.
Domestic Science Class, Merriam School -
1914 classroom of the Domestic Science Department at Merriam School. Domestic Science Class students displayed their culinary ability by serving a dinner to parents, teachers, and the school board.
Did you know?
Both the original Merriam School built in 1872, and the second Merriam School built in 1911 are still in use today. The second Merriam School is now the Irene B. French Community Center, owned by the City of Merriam and named for the former mayor who was instrumental in its preservation and renovation. It is located at 5701 Merriam Drive.
Erected 2006 by City of Merriam. (Marker Number 07.)
Location. Touch for map. Marker is at the Merriam Visitors Bureau, near Exit #228B of Interstate 35, and immediately southwest of the intersection of Shawnee Mission Parkway (US 56) and Eby Avenue. Marker is at or near this postal address: 6304 East Frontage Road, Mission KS 66202, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The South Park Community (here, next to this marker); Incorporation of Merriam (a few steps from this marker); City of Firsts (a few steps from this marker); The Bear Pit (a few steps from this marker); Community of Excellence (a few steps from this marker); Merriam Park (within shouting distance of this marker); The Trolley Line & Hocker Grove Amusement Park (within shouting distance of this marker); Merriam Park & George Kessler (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Merriam.
Related marker. Click here for another marker that is related to this marker.
Also see . . .
1. About Merriam, Kansas. (Submitted on December 16, 2011, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
2. Shawnee Mission School District. (Submitted on December 16, 2011, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
Categories. • Education • Man-Made Features •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on December 16, 2011, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 348 times since then and 10 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on December 16, 2011, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. 7. submitted on September 6, 2011, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.