In 1814 the first teacher in Nile Township was Jonathan Ho.....

 In 1837 the first teach in Washington Township was Adam Dempsey.

 There was a school house in Alexandria in 1800.

 Pond Run School was built in 1865.

 Teacher salaries in the late 1800's averaged $35 to $40 per month.

 Most one-room schools did not have electricity until after 1937.

 Portsmouth Daily Times School News Clippings

Read More to see more interesting tidbits and old newspaper articles about various school events.


 Boys sat on one side of the room; girls on the other. A punishment for a boy was to make him sit with the girls.

 The County Superintendent (after 1914) made visits to each school once a month and heard recitations from one or two classes, then conferred with the teacher about their progress. When you stop to consider that there was at least 15 buildings in what is now Washington Local District and the limited means of transportation available, you realize what a monumental task this was.

 In 1883 there were 796 students in our district. Nile consisted of nine buildings with 527 students and the remainder attended at seven different buildings in Washington. 

       Nile Township (Note: locations/names in school notations may not be current)

         Friendship > where Nickel's Service Station used to be.   Portsmouth Daily Times Friendship News Articles

         Pond Run > Ohio Valley Grange Hall.

         Leatherwood > gone, location is what is now Cunningham's Farm.   Portsmouth Daily Times Leatherwood News Articles

         Elm Tree School > McKendree home, now Masonic Lodge.

         Middle Turkey Creek > now Childer's Grocery.

         Twin Creek > privately owned but still standing.

         Odle Creek > now at Tarhee Youth Camp, Blue Creek. It is quite possibly the only log schoolhouse still in existence in Southern Ohio, owned by Rev. Sam Fillmore.

         Rabbit Run > gone.

         Brushy Fork Upper Turkey Creek > building now for sale.

      Washington Township (Note: locations/names in school notations may not be current)

         Dry Run School

         Hygean Run > gone.

         Lower Carey's Run > now a home, Mr. & Mrs. Wm. Payne.  Portsmouth Daily Times Carey's Run News Articles

         Sugar Grove > owned by Mr. Daulton, sometimes a corn crib.  Portsmouth Daily Times Sugar Grove News Articles

         Upper Carey's Run (2 buildings) > one now a church, the other burned in 1967.

         Slab Run > now a private residence Mr. & Mrs. Rod Maynard.

         Flatwood School > gone, but was located where Washington Blvd. makes the bend to.

         Portsmouth Daily Times Buena Vista News Articles

 School districts were formed in Washington and Nile Townships between 1837 and 1846.

 In 1850, Ohio passed a compulsory attendance law. 

 The Bible was an early textbook for several reasons - it was available, many passages were already learned by rote, and early education focused on teaching the values and principles that was in it.

 Spelling School was the forerunner of our modern day spelling bee and the earliest form of community entertainment.

 Ruler was a "ferule" used as a straightedge for marking paper.

 Lead pencils were rods of lead used for ruling the unmarked paper. Our wood and carbon pencils did not become popular until after 1860.

 Blackboards were originally just that - slabs of wood blackened with a mixture of egg white and the carbon of charred potatoes.

 "Little Red Schoolhouses" were red because that was the cheapest kind of paint you could buy.

 Pen Knife was a necessary piece of school equipment used for sharpening quill pens. Girls used "button knives" that had a shoe button attachment.