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The Goodsprings Historical Society invites all old friends and new friends to join us for conversations about Goodsprings past and future. There will be good food and historic memorabilia in abundance. Please mark your calendars and enjoy these 2 special days in Goodsprings.
8:00: Registration/Donuts - Community Center
Historic school displays at old clubhouse
12:30 Potluck Lunch (bring your favorite meat dish, salad, or dessert
2:30 Goodsprings Historical Society Annual Meeting
8-11:00 Miner's Breakfast - Community Center
All main events will be held in the Goodsprings Community Center. The Goodsprings School will be open during the day Saturday and Sunday.
Special note: The Reenactment Guild of America is hosting the Grand National Competition of the Old West at the Gold Strike Hotel at Jean this same weekend. There will be gunfighters, Mountain Men encampments, Cowboy encampments, music, vendors and more. Free admission! If you plan to stay at Jean, make your reservations early. Details at: GoldStrikeJean.com
CCSD Superintendent Walt Rulffes, School Trustee Carolyn Edwards, Julie Newberry, and Clark County Commissioner Susan Brager unveil the plaque.
What a year this has been! The Goodsprings Historical Society sponsored two major events this past fall. We hope many of you attended or at least saw coverage of the School and Sign dedications online or in local media. But I am getting ahead of myself. The May 2009 Annual meeting was highlighted with discussions about the closing of the Goodsprings School. Our Clark County School Board Trustee Carolyn Edwards was here to speak on school issues. A "Save Our School" committee was created.
May: The Clark County School Board voted to send the students at Primm to the Goodsprings School, thereby increasing the student population and assuring the viability of the school through 2010. The Historical Society sponsored a Goodsprings booth at the Cultural History Fair at the Springs Preserve in Las Vegas.
Sept: As part of the Clark County Centennial Celebration, the County placed a bronze plaque on the Goodsprings School recognizing the school's listing on the National Register of Historic Places. Representatives from the Congressional Delegation, the Governor's Office, Clark County, and School Officials attended the dedication. The dignitaries, society members, parents and Goodsprings Community members enjoyed a presentation by the school students. The Goodsprings Historical Society hosted this important event with a reception (which featured elaborate food by Ruth Rawlinson) and early Goodsprings memorabilia.
Oct: The final report on the Yellow Pine Rail Trail was accepted by Clark County. Funds are not available at this time to proceed with the Trail construction, but having the plans accepted by the County gives the trail credence and protection.
Nov: As a second part of the Centennial Celebration, the County erected an official Historic Goodsprings sign at the park by the Community Center. The sign was dedicated by County Commissioner Susan Brager and County Centennial Chairman Dorothy Wright. Following the dedication, the Goodsprings Historical Society hosted a reception and an art show of original paintings of Goodsprings buildings. The annual School Fundraiser Bingo Night was held in November. Good food and great prizes made the event a success.
Dec: The Society sponsored the Goodsprings School Christmas Program providing presents for the children.
Now we are planning for the Old-Timer's Reunion and Annual Meeting May 1st and 2nd. A major event at Jean the same days as the reunion may add new activities for our attendees. Corky Poole has added a new mug to the mug collection. Mugs will be for sale for $10 at the reunion. Bobbie Poole has once again donated handmade pillows for our raffle. We will miss the steady hand of Brad Whitney this year. His unexpected death has dealt a huge blow to the Old Timer's Reunion and the Goodsprings Historical Society Board. As always, when need is great someone in the group steps up. Ruth Rawlinson has agreed to do the Miner's Breakfast on Sunday.
Memorials: It is with great sadness that we report the loss of Goodsprings Old-Timers Grant Robbins II, Hershel Smith, Howard Whitney and Thelma Chadburn Reidhead. Goodsprings Historical Society Trustee Brad Whitney also passed away in 2009
Acquisitions: The Goodsprings Historical Society received two amazing donations this year. The Society would like to express our deep gratitude to Dorothy Wright and Barbara Schwartz for trusting the Society with these endowments. Please take time at the Reunion to enjoy these two great additions to the Goodsprings Historical Society archives.
Watercolor Painting: At the art show accompanying the sign dedication, Dorothy Wright gave the Society a watercolor of the Goodsprings School that was painted by Lucille Brunner. Lucille Brunner was a founding member of the Las Vegas Watercolor Society whose works reflected early Southern Nevada lifestyles. Thank you Dorothy for this important cultural gift.
A. G. Campbell Notebook: In January, the Society received a 6 inch thick loose-leaf binder of news articles that had been collected by Barbara Schwartz, great-great granddaughter of Allen Green and Florence Campbell. Barbara's research into her ancestors led her to search early newspapers for the Campbell name and his association with Goodsprings and the Yellow Pine Mining District. During her research, she contacted Steve Fleming and in talking with him realized his family was the Schwartz people she had been reading about. She then included articles about Otto Schwartz as well as A.G..Campbell in the loose-leaf binder. The result is a comprehensive, fascinating collection of news articles dating from 1875-1970 which reflect Goodsprings town life and mining activities as seen through the eyes of reporters from the L. A. Times, New York Times, Salt Lake Tribune, Salt Lake Herald, Reno Evening Gazette, Las Vegas Age, and Las Vegas Review Journal. This notebook provides entertaining reading and is a research tool that can be used by students of Southern Nevada mining history. It is an important resource for the Society. Thank you Barbara for entrusting us with all the hard work you took to compile it.
Election: There will be 5 positions on the Goodsprings Historical Society Board of Trustees that will be up for reelection in May. All members are welcome to run for office. Please let one of the present Trustees know if you would like to be put on the ballot. We need your help!
Thanks: Memorial Donations: Marilyn Kemple Bauer in memory of Juanita Zable, Jane Fleming in memory of Brad Whitney. Special thanks to Gold Members: Mike Cartwright, Cindy Kay, Russ Decaro, Ed Fayle, Bob & Ann Osburn, Barbara Schwartz, Liz & Claude Warren; and to Lead/Zinc Members: Annette Fisherman, Stephen Fleming. The Society thanks all dues paying members for their contributions. Please remember dues are due in May and will be collected at the Reunion. A mail-in form is attached to this newsletter.
Interesting School Facts: 1930 - 1939
Teachers in the 30s include Sarah Williams, F.E. Shotwell, and Dorothy Borgna The number of school days per year varied from 168-171 The number of books in the school library ranged from 82 - 250 The value of school property (building, furniture, equipment) ranged from $4,300 to $9,200
Submitted by Julie Newberry
Between 1930 and 1940 times were hard for the whole country. Goodsprings was no different. As the mines laid off workers, families would have to leave their beloved town. However, the school enrollment did not seem to suffer, ranging from 25 to 48 students. Sometimes there were 2 teachers, sometimes only one, the much-loved and highly respected Sarah Williams.
Miss Williams began her career with Goodsprings School during the 1929-1930 school year after being diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. She remained teaching there until the summer of 1947, the longest any teacher has ever taught in Goodsprings. Former students remember her as an excel- lent teacher and a second mother to them all. She taught them self-respect in her own caring way. As Miss Williams became more crippled, students would help with jobs such as starting the fire in the pot-bellied stove, cleaning the chalkboard erasers, sweeping the floor, and carrying her books to school for her. Even with bent fingers, she would play the piano for them. Her proverbial cane also served as a punishment stick. One former student claims she hooked that cane around his neck, pulled him close to her, and quietly but sternly said, "We don't do that here." Her system of discipline was known to be strict, but always fair. For her first year Sarah Williams was paid an annual salary of $1305. The next year her raise brought her to $1350 for the year. During the hard times of the thirties, she never received any more, even when she taught all 8 grades alone, even when she had 40 students, even when she was named a teaching principal in 1939.
Former school children have many memories. On Halloween night there were many pranks, such as tipping over outhouses. One time children stole the teacher's gate and hoisted it to the top of the school flag pole. Then there were the Christmas plays followed by Santa Claus who gave out stockings filled with fruit, nuts, and candy. Sometimes there was a small gift. Children from Jean, Sandy Valley, and Roach were bused to Goodsprings School. Some students were allowed to complete 2 grades within one year. Some report cards were given out by the month, some every 6 weeks, some quarterly. The dentist Dr. Quannah McCall visited school once a year with a mobile dental unit. The dirt playground had two sets of swings, the "tricky" bars, and a baseball diamond. Children still played "Anti-i-over," throwing a ball over the roof. This game was not sanctioned by the teachers. During the mid-thirties a small room was added to the front of the school for a library. Children wore shoes to school, but sometimes went barefoot otherwise. In one family, their father made rubber soles for his boys' shoes out of old tires. They didn't wear out, but they left tire tracks everywhere. Then there was the flowered tattoo a child could get from backing into the tin covering around the stove.
During this decade the schoolhouse also served as a community hall and a church for several denominations. In the mid-thirties a small room was added to the front of the school for a library. The town had no electricity until Hoover Dam was completed, so kerosene had many uses including running a refrigerator for one family. Most people in the town worked in a mine, prospected, or were retired from the mines. Others ran the many businesses in town such as the pool hall, saloons, general stores, or the hotel.
Students from this era entered a variety of careers: a teacher, a maritime engineer, director of career development in a university, mining engineer, farmer, purchasing agent, aluminum smelter operator, and bookkeeper.
Thank you to the many "Old Timers" who donated pictures, poems, stories, speeches, and report cards. Material in this article is also taken from Nevada State Archive records.
Membership dues are payable in May of each year. We thankfully acknowledge the following members:
Lead and Zinc: Gold: Annette Fisherman Russ Decaro Stephen Fleming Mike and Christine Cartwright Bob and Ann Osburn Ed Fayle Cindy Kay Barbara Schwartz Liz and Claude Warren
Membership Dues Individual_______$5.00; Gold Member__________$50.00; Family__________$10.00; Lead/Zinc Member____$100.00; Name______________________________ Amount_____________ Address_______________________________________________ Email________________________________ Send to: Goodsprings Historical Society, Box 603, Goodsprings, NV 89019
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