The Dunlapsville Academy
That, which has its origin as noble purpose retains its name in veneration. So with the school building. In its stately appearance and good influence it retains the name Academy, in memory of the institution for which it was erected.
The building was the abode of the White Water Presbytery Academy, a school designed to fill the need of an institution in the White Water Perspire for the education of the sons and daughters.
To the influence of Dr. Monford, now editor of the Herald and Presbytery in Cincinnati, and the Gilchrist family we are indebted for the location more important places were rivals for the favor but for that village, these advantages were considered, healthfulness, seclusion, good moral tone, and local patronage. The Presbytery was t o supply financial aid and many pupils.
A resident elder, Alexander McCann donated the ground, a local board of trustees, advanced funds and in 1852 the work began. All went well until promised aid failed to meet expectation.
To meet the financial demands, scholarships were sold and thereupon its future was mortgaged. In the meantime, this Presbyterian institution with fervent hopes to accomplish the good purpose, began the career under the presidency of Rev. L. D. Potter, afterwards president of Glendale College.
The Church at Dunlapsville served as the abode for the infant school until 1854 when the academy building was completed. Rev. R. B. Abbot was chosen president. The faculty consisted of five instructors. The departments were Primary, Intermediate, Classical and Musical. The school was well equipped having a piano, chemical and physical apparatus and a library. Every morning the whole school met for devotional exercises in the chapel, the room which now serves as town hall.
One hundred and fifty pupils at one time were in attendance from this and adjoining counties. Farmers and villagers were enthusiastic for higher education. New residence came, farm and village homes opened to students. Dunlapsville progress reached its summit then, it lived its early days. But as its use was r aped, its decline was sudden. Rival schools were established and being on an inefficient financial basis, the noble enterprise was abandoned at the end of five short years.
From 1858 several successful private schools were taught by able instructors. Erastus Test, now Professor at Purdue University then taught his first school. Mr. Gray, a graduate of Yale, and others followed. These private ventures were of short duration. The building was sold for a dwelling, and the remnants of apple orchard and roses still mark the period of its history as a home. Again it was sold, and once more did serve as a private school building and at least in1875 was purchased by Liberty Township for its present use.
Truly has the Academy experienced a remarkable day. With a glorious dawn, a clouded noon and symbol of a happy eve.
We are in sincere gratitude to the founders of the institution. Through the fullest realization of their hopes were somewhat blighted their purpose lives on. Their work holds a lasting influence up the educational spirit of that vicinity. The school children enjoy the best from their inspiration. The Academy building is next to home and is now the Dunlapsville School.
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