(Click image to enlarge)
Contributed by Joan Taylor Russell
Chalybeate Springs which was located on State Route 75, about 1/2 mile north of its intersection with SR 81. The year is probably 1904, inasmuch as the dark haired girl 4th from left end of the third row is Amy Taylor, who is gazing adoringly at Will Keys, the teacher on extreme right. She was married to him in February 1905. He was a widower, about 34 years old with four children and she was 16.
The faces of two young girls in the back row have been obliterated. This was done by the young lady who is fifth from the left in the back row, Lucinda Taylor, who simply stated that she didn’t like those girls.
The only other people I can identify are Billie Taylor, 7th from the left in the second row (wearing the dark jacket, white shirt) his sister Alvertie on the right end of the second row, and their brother Charley on the right end of the front row. All Taylors are of the same family and apparently Essie was absent.
Ned Irwin, County Archivists, states that in 1907, the pupils transferred to Sulphur Springs School. Thereafter for some years the building was used as a school for African-American students. It finally closed for good in 1922.
FAMILIES IN CHALYBEATE SPRINGS SCHOOL
Armstrong: Clara, Conward
Archer: Mattie, Lura, Leonard Sherman
Bacon: Julia, Grace, Nell, John
Campbell: Will, Cornelia, Russ, Dora, Cleo
Deakins: Stella, Nell
Good: Will, Ike, Argil, Robert Hubert
Hicks: Jake, Roby, Glen, Harry, Helia, Sallie
Hunt: Tom, Anna, Lottie, Matt
Kennerly: Rollin, Ray
Kizer: Blanche, Charley, Smith
Lizenberry: Carl, Georgia
Luster: Mary, Esther, Daniel
Murdock: Miller, Buster or Luster
Pitts: Frank, John
Taylor: Tom, Amy, Charley, Lucinda, Essie, Billie, Alvertie
Walker: Leola, Leona, Lizzie
Walker: Onnie, Dean
Whetsel: Lena, Alma
Willis: John, Mary, Jim
We went to school at Chalybeate Springs* about a mile and a half away. We would walk “rain or shine,” carrying our lunch and a pack of books. We wore old shoes (no overshoes) and they would be wet and “spongy.” Our school was a log structure on top of a hill. There was a natural spring in a big rock at the foot of the hill.
Mother would make lightbread, pies and cakes, and fix two peck baskets of lunch, one for the boys and one for the girls. They (the baskets) would be full of biscuits of ham, jam or jelly and apple or berry pie or sometimes cake.
We had many teachers through the years: Jud Hunt, Alma Conley, Dick Squibb, Mary Bacon, Ida McAdams, Mary Smith, Maud Keebler, Sam Wilcox and Will Keys. We had a lot of fun along with our studies and a lot of mischief. We would have spelling matches at the end of the week. There would be two sides – one on each side of the room. One time I made two “tallies” on spelling “raisins.” By Lucinda Katherine Taylor Shipley, Mrs. Herman S. (1890-1983) Eighty-five years old when she wrote these words.
*Chalybeate waters, also known as ferruginous waters, are mineral spring waters containing salts of iron.