THE LAST DANCYVILLE SCHOOL
This photo of the
Dancyville School was taken in 1999. This was long after the building ceased to be a school.
It was converted to a community building and named in honor of Mr. Joe B. Moore. Mr. P. J. Angotti,
Haywood County School Board has confirmed the Dancyville School closed in the Spring of 1969.
provided for the Dancyville School
by Mrs. Val Rucker Routon
The school was built in l929 in time for the l929-1930 school term to start.
Dorothy Moore, Annie Marie Crawford and I were in the first graduating
When we moved to Dancyville in 1927 my father, having been a public
school teacher for 20 years, was anxious to improve the small Dancyville
school, two teachers in a very dilapidated building. I attended this school
the first year we lived there. Mrs. Irene Kennedy was the principal.
He enlisted the aid of Mr. D. C. Crawford (Annie Marie's father;) and
possibly some others to petition the Haywood County School Board to
approve a consolidated school in a safe new building. They were
successful, consolidating with another small school in Springhill area (Koko
School I think).
With the additional enrollment, a third teacher was hired, and the new
school building was built facing the Somerville road across from the
Methodist Parsonage. Everyone was happy with an updated, safe school.
Virgie Naylor from Brownsville was the new principal (she boarded with
the Crawfords), Lorraine Cook (later Mrs. Oscar Howse) was intermediate
teacher and Olivia Powell (from Springhill) was the primary teacher.
After we graduated from 8th grade (Dorothy was valedictorian and I was
salutatorian) my father and Mr. D. C. again petitioned the Haywood County
School Board to approve a school bus route from Dancyville to Brownsville
High School for the beginning of the 1930 school term. This was approved;
however, effective date was late September or October 1930. So from
August to October 1930, parents took turns car-pooling the 8th grade
graduates to Brownsville High School. Then in October the bus route
started (a real adventure through Hatchie River Bottom on rainy days).
When the new school opened, the principal, who had some music
appreciation, wanted the school to have a piano which would cost at least
$25 (used upright). With no financial resources available, it was necessary
to find a private source. This turned out to be Mr. "Tip" Hunter offering to
let the students pick all the cotton they could in one of his cotton patches on
a designated Fall afternoon. Our mothers made cotton sacks out of flour
sacks, and all the students and three teachers walked the mile to Mr.
Hunter's cotton patch and picked cotton like crazy all afternoon. He gave
us the proceeds from the cotton we picked and as a result the school got the
We had regular devotionals in the auditorium that had a stage and the
prized piano. Miss Naylor taught us the usual patriotic songs along with a
few of "that age" popular songs as "Carolina Moon" and some Kate Smith
At the end of the school term we had a full blown 8th grade graduation on
the stage. Miss Naylor planned the event. She selected the dress pattern
and material at Hotchiss and Lyle in Brownsville. She also selected colors
for all the girls dresses. I remember Dorothy's was yellow, Annie Marie's
was pink and mine blue. The dress pattern was supposedly utmost "chic"
for the day. The voile dresses had long waists with a wide band at the hips
and a double-flounce gathered skirt short in front and back and ankle length
on the sides. They were young flapper dresses! We got to curl our hair and
wear slippers with inch heels. It was really a "coming out" for some of us.
The boys wore dark coats and white pants, neckties and slicked-down hair.
Dorothy gave a serious valedictory address and I gave a comical reading.
My father drove me to Brownsville for speech lessons with a Mrs. Hamer
for several weeks prior to graduation to learn the best dramatics for the
reading. We all sat on the stage during the entire program. It was a real
celebration as a few of the graduates did not continue to high school
making this a real time to remember in their education.
I remember how "grown up" we felt and also that the auditorium had
standing room only. The audience gave us such support. The stage was
decorated with baskets of flowers and crepe paper streamers. It was a total
COMMUNITY CENTER SIGN AND FLAG
The above sign is in front of
the J. B. Moore Community Center, the former Dancyville
School. To the right is the sign and the flag and pole in front of
the center. The Flag pole was installed by Bill Duncan and the
provided by Darrell Thomas. Joan Williams designed and
furnished the sign.
Photos by MARY KAY DANCY SMITH
GO HERE for the INDEX of Mrs. Routon's many contributions to the Dancyville web site.
GO HERE for the INDEX of Mrs. Virgie Naylor's contributions to the Dancyville web site.
GO HERE for index to the J. B. Moore Memorial Community Center Photos.
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