Societies of Local
|Information from Bicenetennial
in the Littlestown Area
Education in this area as else where was either
accomplished through private schools or schools that were
run by the different religions.
The history of education in this area dates back before
1747 when a Reform minister, Rev Michael Schlatter, sent
by the Synod of Amsterdam, visited the first know school
in what would become Adams County. Two days after his arrival,
on May 4, he baptized the child of the schoolmaster, John
Henry Kreutz. The main subject taught was German. During
the pastorate of Rev. Jacob Wiestling, which began in 1813,
the school was housed in a building on church property
and this school remained in existence for approximately
one hundred years.
The Free School Act of 1834 caused much debate and opposition
in this area. Many people sincerely believed that free
schools would engender indolence, increase crime, oppress
the taxpayers and destroy individual liberty. As a result
of such thinking, a joint convention was held at Gettysburg
November 4, 1834, by the County Commissioners. A. LeFevre,
delegate from here, voted thumbs down, along with others,
on the proposal. Finally, at the third and final convention
on May 2, 1836, the townships acquiesced. A County Convention
was held in Littlestown, November 21 to 23, 1866, by the
office of the County Superintendent of Schools, created
by State law in 1854.
In 1836, Public school machinery was set up in Littlestown.
There were two schools established, one a log structure
on East King Street taught by. Dr. Aaron Bishop and Amos
Keeport, and the other a frame structure back of West King
Street, taught by John McSherry and Fanny Weams. In 1867,
the Rev. Father Francis x. Deneckere established the first
Catholic parochial school with Miss Mary Wilson as first
There were numerous one room school houses during this period in the
surrounding townships. To look at a few of these check out other
Public education so progressed in Littlestown in 1871
a two story brick building consisting of three classrooms
and one recreation room was built.
1871 school on West King Street - Where the community
Center is now.
The first principal was Hanson Harner. One year later,
in 1872, a famous Littlestown school teacher, Miss Lizzie
Nicks, was elected as a teacher od the primary grades and
remained in this capacity for 31 years. It is a known fact
that as soon as pupils could recite the A, B, C's, Miss Nicks
rewarded them with a penny. Teachers salaries were $18.00
a month and the average term was 4 months and five days.
In 1885 there was a private preparatory school established
in Littlestown. Click here to learn
There was not much improvement in 1898, when the salary
was $24.00 a month. Summer schools were also held in the
public school building around this time. One such school
was conducted by Amos Parr. As many as a hundred students
from all over the county came to Littlestown for the summer
or 'trade' schools. Principal was succeeded by Ezra E.
The building constructed in 1871 was razed thirty years
later to give way to the grade school building on East
King Street, converted into the Community Center in 1963.
The new building was constructed by John Eline, who was THE
BUILDER in those days, at a cost of $10,000, and
boasted a hot water furnace and spacious rooms and halls.
It was first occupied December 1, 1901. The first class
was graduated from Littlestown High School, May 1, 1902.
W. A. Burgoon was the first school principal. Three years
later L.H.S. was recognized as a second class school with
a three year course by the state.
1901 school replaced earlier school building.
In 1915 the school had grown so that it necessitated an
addition to the building and in 1916 it was recognized as
a first class school.
To trace the growth - in 1901 there was a faculty of one and a student
body of 17; in 1932, there was a faculty of one and a student body of
On January 7, 1932, it was decided to construct a new
building as a result of the congestion being experienced
on East King Street, and this was to be located on a site
north of the playground on Maple Avenue, at that time Long
Bids were received April 14 and contracts awarded amounting
to approximately $50,000 on May 13.The architect was Bernard
Starr, an alumnus of the school, class of 1911, and the
building was completed in time for the class of 1933 to
hold their Commencement exercises. William Eline was the
contractor, son of the man who built the East King Street
School; Stanley B. Stover did the electrical work and B.F.
Redding the plumbing.
Maple Avenue School in 1933
To view what this school looks like after several additions Click
The Board of Education consisted
of Dr. Harry S. Crouse, Samuel E. Renner, John A. Mayers,
Emory H. Snyder, and Henry S. Stover. The High School Faculty
included Paul E. King, principal; Lloyd L. Stavely, Harold
R. Shriver, Golds O. Hook, Josephine Stetser and Kathryn
In 1938, the school added two new departments to its curriculum,
Industrial Arts and Home Economics. In 1944, Littlestown
High School had medical service for the first time with
Mrs. Brenda Badders Walker as school nurse.
Pleasant township, Littlestown Borough, Mt. Joy, Union
and Germany townships formed the Littlestown Joint School
System on July 1, 1948. As a result the schools were changed
from the 8-4 to the 6-6 plan. This caused an influx of
junior high pupils from the rural schools which in turn
brought about a new $54,000 addition to the Maple Avenue
School, to include 4 classrooms, a cafeteria, and an office
and storage room. Work began on September 16, 1948 and
was completed by the end of the school year. Also, about
this time the new athletic field was put to use. All first
grade pupils of the Jointure were invited to come to Littlestown
where two first grades were established.
In the summer of 1950 extensive renovations were made
in the Maple Avenue structure to accommodate an enlarged
Industrial Arts program and to provide space for a music
room and laboratory. There were 972 pupils in the entire
school system; 433 enrolled in the Junior-Senior High School.
The East King Street building accommodated grades one through
six with a total enrollment of 547 pupils.
On February 11, 1952, the Joint Board of
Education was advised of the increase in enrollments of the
elementary schools and the lack of physical facilities. On
April 8 it was agreed to take an option on the proposal of
Lloyd and Alma Crouse for twelve lots on East Myrtle Street
and consider the gift of lands adjoining thereto as owned
by I.H. Crouse & Sons. Bids were opened for a new school
on December 9, 1952, and contracts awarded. Allen F. Feeser,
Taneytown, Md. was general contractor. The name "Rolling
Acres Elementary School" was selected by the Board;
dedication of the new school, built at a cost of approximately
$500,000 was held on Friday, January 29, 1954.
Since Rolling Acres School was built in 1952-54 the school
has had several additions.
To see how the School looks today Click Here.
|The original part of the present Littlestown High School
was dedicated on September 3, 1961. It was built at an approximate
cost of $1,500,000. The School bell used on the first private
school established on East King Street and later at the public
school which is now the community center is now on display
in the foyer of the new Gymnasium.
This Section will be developed
more in the near future.