Patterson School, 1896-1953

PATTERSON SCHOOL 1896-1953 was located first on the south side of the present Coleman Hill Road and about 1/2 mile east of its intersection with Patterson Road. On October 31, 1896, R. L., W. G., and Evie Pate signed a deed for two acres for a school in the 47th District to J. I. Dyer, W. I. Pate, and T. J. Wray, Jr., School Directors. In 1911 or 1912, the school building was moved to its second site near the southeast corner of the intersection on land owned by W. I. Pate.

The PATTERSON SCHOOL replaced the old POSSUM TROT SCHOOL and was often referred to as POSSUM TROT.

The first school which was later moved, was a one-room building with a bell tower. By 1917 a room had been added. In 1929, a modern two-room building with a kitchen was erected by Jimmie D. Vaughan on the same second site.

Maggie Floyd was a teacher in 1907; Minnie Floyd, in 1908; Abbey Floyd Beasley, in 1909; Mai White c 1911. Others were Lula Tolbert, Annie Ashley, Daisy Adams Wray, Bessie Tolbert Holden, Pauline Scales, Ray Donnell, Miss Tilford, Ophelia Elam, Fred Nance, Wilma Bean, Christine Jordan, Virginia Cobb, Margaret Brandon, Georgia Lee Marable Pate, Christine Couch, Vera Maxwell, Vera Covington, Myra McCrory Morris, and Louise Beasley. Many of the teachers boarded at the homes of Molly Pate Snell and Eulalia Vaughn Patterson.

Family names of students were Pate, Watson, Snell, Morris, Hill, Patterson, Windrow, Jordan, Morris, Maxwell, Heaton, Neal, Frost, White, Wilson, Lamb, Dyer, Barnes, Ghee, and Wray. Emma Pate Wilson, who started school in 1909, remembers the excitement in the community when the school building was moved to its new location. Mr. Grey of Murfreesboro pulled the schoolhouse down the road with a mule. Melvin Porter Maxwell,
who was in school at the time, remembers that nothing could deter his teacher Mal White, who taught her classes while the schoolhouse moved along.

Robert Baskin, who attended school in about 1917, recalls that children rode ponies to school and kept them in a barn on the property. The children also brought two ears of corn from home to feed their ponies at noon.

Ray Donnell, a teacher in his first school, was a basketball coach. During tournaments, the teams played all day long until, at the final game of the night, a champion was announced.

The last class in 1952-1953 had thirteen students, six grades, and one teacher. Most of the students were transferred to EAGLEVILLE.

On July 9, 1955, the Rutherford County School Commission deeded to R. H. Patterson the two acres of school property.

The school built in 1929 was converted into a home and is still used as a residence.

SOURCES: Deed Book 37, p. 510; Book 116, p. 94. “Patterson School History Outlined,” The Daily News Journal, Nov. 9, 1948, from information given to fifth and sixth grades of Patterson School by R. L. Patterson, son of T. M. Patterson. Interviews, July 30, 1948, with Magnus Watson Snell Lovvorn,
student in 1918-1927; August 1982, with Anne Barnes Edwards, b. July 1903, a student; January 15, 1983, with Robert W. Baskin, student; September 16, 1984, with Melvin Porter Maxwell, b. 1900, and a student 1907- ; September 15, 1984, with Buddy Pate, great-great nephew of R. L. Patterson and a student, 1951-1953; September 7, 1984, with Frances G. Tucker, niece of
Molly Pate Snell and daughter of Martha Jane Pate Garrett, b. May 7, 1899, who was an early student of PATTERSON SCHOOL; April 1985, with Annie Evelyn Patterson Taylor, daughter of Eulalia Vaughn Patterson. *Sarah Donnell Smith, sister of *Ray Donnell. *Georgia Lee Marable Pate. *Vera Covington.

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