In And Around Hannibal, by Rita Hooper

Continuing on District No. 11 South Hannibal   (Hannibal History in Pictures and Prose)

The first schoolhouse in this district is believed to have been constructed around the 1820s.

The schoolhouse was first located on the west side of what is now County Route 7 north of the hamlet center. The building was moved at least four times and eventually served as an annex and parsonage to the Methodist Church before it was federated with the Baptist Church.

The Baptists and Methodists in South Hannibal federated together in 1932 – in 1954, the Rev. Pauline Burdette, suggested moving the Methodist Church from its site on Goodman Road and joining it with the Baptist Church on County Route 7.

A vote was taken and the church family voted in favor of the move, which was completed in 1955. Thereafter it was known as South Hannibal Federal Church.

It has since joined with Hannibal Center Methodist Church to form the South Hannibal-Hannibal Center parish.

After the Methodist Church was moved from Goodman Road to become part of the new federated church, the old school building was sold to Danny Martin.

He converted the  structure into a house still located on Goodman Road.  Later Mr. Stowell purchased it to use as a tenant house for his farm employee.

It again changed hands when David Pierce bought the property. By now, the original school structure has had extensive additions built onto it; but if you look closely you can still tell it was once a schoolhouse.

A second schoolhouse was built about 1854 just south of the Baptist parsonage near the intersection of County Route 7 and Route 176. The lumber for the building was cut locally at the sawmill of Sidney Hulett.

The early teachers received from $1.50-$2 per week for five and one-half days a  week and boarded at sites in the district.  (Boarded means lived with a family – not their own.)

The year was divided into summer and winter terms. Attendance ran as high as 76 or more, with the older pupils really being young adults. Many of the school records were lost when the last South Hannibal store fire occurred.

At the 1877 school district meeting, it was voted to use Quackenbush’s  Arithmetic, Clark’s grammar, Montieth’s geography, the Analytical readers and spellers.

The teacher was paid $7 per week for winter session and $5.50 per week for summer session. In 1880, $1 was paid for cleaning the schoolhouse and a quart of soap cost 7 cents. In 1882, $72.89 was raised by taxes for the support of the school.

Men teachers in those days were earning money to help them go on to study law, medicine or engineering – a stepping stone to some other occupation of a higher caliber. Teaching was not considered a profession as it is now.

Certification was determined by the local school commissioner, not the New York State Board of Regents.

Trustees of District No. 11 over the years included: GV Wolven, SE Rowlee, SD Gardner, William Howland, DD Wells, Merritt Miller, AS Lane, B Wilcox, George Barlow, EJ Wells, CW Haws, Milton Terpening, FA Miller, George Hines, George Blake, Arthur Goodman, FN Palmer, Lynn Randall, George Baldwin, William Summerville, William reedy, Murray Megraw, Phillip Haws, Ivan Blake, Raymond Hovey, Fran Beadle, Gordon Dibble and Charles Warner.

Among some of the early teachers were 1857 Truman Showers, 1858 Miss Earl, 1859 Elizabeth Schenk.

Teachers in the 1930s-40s were: 1930-31 Marion Andrews and Frances Graves, 1933-34 Nellie Gifford and Aneita Graves, 1937-38 Mrs. L. Mae Signor, 1938 Mrs. Gordon Sturge (Gordon Sturge was also a teacher and town historian,) 1938-43 Hazel Chaffee, 1943-44 Mae Pellett Rogers ( Mr. Rogers ran Roger’s Mill in Hannibal Center,) 1945-46 Reta Merriam, 1945-46 Rowena Godfrey, Mae March and in 1946-49 Vivian Megaw, who was the last person to teach in District No. 11 before centralization.

Centralization signaled the end of the South Hannibal School as an independent district. Those in attendance for the last school session in 1949 included Diane Chillson, John and Joyce Crego, Elaine Dibble, Ruth Ann Hovey, Sandra Ingison, Jean and Kay Lewchanin, Mable, Leon, Harold and Charles Reynolds, Harold and Christine Roe, Robert Rogers, Jerry Toloff, Luella and Lela Summervile, Bobby Van Buren and Robert Wade.

However for a year or so after centralization, a grade was bused out to the school from Hannibal while an addition was being built onto the Hannibal High School

Eventually the schoolhouse was sold and now has disappeared from the scene.  In it’s place stands the home of Joan Wallace (as of 1994.)


The Hannibal Fire Company Auxiliary will hold its Sunday Breakfast Buffet from 8 to 11 a.m. Jan. 26 at the firehouse on Oswego Street. It’s the first breakfast of the New Year.

The Senior Meals Program meets Monday, Wednesday and Friday for lunch at noon. The center opens at 10 for those who want to come early and read the newspaper or get caught up on what’s happening ‘bout town.

Jig-saw puzzles and games are always available.

Give Rosemary a call and make your reservation, 564-5471.

This week’s menu is:

Monday — Reuben noodle casserole, vegetable, juice, fruit cup

Wednesday — Cooks’ choice (call for specifics)

Friday — Turkey sloppy Joe, baked potato, peas and carrots, orange juice, peaches

Activities — Monday, Wii bowling;     Wednesday, bingo after lunch; Friday,   snowman races

On Monday, those at the center will participate in a Wii bowling tournament against other centers and beyond.  Come join their team, or just be a spectator!

The Elderberries will meet at noon Tuesday for a covered dish luncheon. Do join them – bring your own table service and a dish to pass.

The Senior Council would like to remind you that its rooms are available for groups and family rental when not being otherwise used. Give Rosemary a call for information and booking at 564-5471.

The Library has a new raffle basket, Winter Warm Up. Drawing is Jan. 31.

Hannibal Home & School will meet at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 4 at Fairley school, Room 30.

Don’t forget to donate your register tapes at the Village Market and your deposit cans to N&N Redemption so that community organizations can reap the benefits!

The Hannibal Village Board meets the second Monday of the month.

The Hannibal Town Board meets the third Wednesday of the month.

The Hannibal Planning Board meets the first Thursday of the month.

All meetings are held at the Municipal Building on Cayuga Street at 7 p.m. and are open to the public. Help yourself and your community by attending.

I can’t write it unless I have it – so you know what to do…phone or e-mail me with your clubs or organization’s info.

By the way, I’m writing to you from Texas (I’m off to Florida tomorrow – have to do some research on what’s happening with the Hannibalites who winter in Florida) so I don’t have access to snail mail or hands on observation, so please give me a call or e-mail me.  Thanks!

Rita Hooper 706-3564

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