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Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve

This schoolhouse is on Tallgrass National Prairie Preserve. Tallgrass prairie used to cover hundreds of millions of acres of land across the country. 4% of this unique and dynamic ecosystem remains, and much of that is in the Kansas Flint Hills. The preserve has a bison herd, a series of trails, and of course, the Lower Fox Creek School.

Photo by Mark Conard

Photo by Mark Conard

The Lower Fox Creek School was placed on the National Register of Historic Places on September 6, 1974. Made of local limestone, this one room schoolhouse saw its first class in the fall of 1884.

It was a “common school” – designed by Horace Mann, the schools were free, which meant families who hadn’t been able to afford school previously were able to get education for their children.

If you would like to check it out, it’s open weekends (Saturday and Sunday) from 12 p.m. – 4 p.m. in May, June, September, and October.

And for some fun, check out the rules for teachers (women must not loiter in town ice cream stores and men must not get shaved in a barber shop) and an 8th grade equivalency test that would have been taken at a school like this: School Rules and Tests.

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