Heritage Corner Reading, ‘Riting, and Roughing It

In December 1893, settlers around Phantom Lake successfully petitioned for a school, which started early the following year in an abandoned bachelor’s cabin in a clearing. There were six students the first year. One of the students, Helen Thode Boddy, later recalled that the cracks between the floor boards were so wide that skunks used to come up looking for crumbs when the students ate lunch. Another student, Paul Heaton, remembered that the students provided their own chairs, and he had to walk to school the first day carrying his chair on his back. One of the teachers was quite afraid of the bears in the area, but Heaton was more worried about the trees. There was a window in the roof to let in light, and when the wind blew he could look up and see the trees swaying back and forth over the roof of the school.

Heritage Corner is a weekly feature of the Bellevue News. Material is provided by the Eastside Heritage Center.

In December 1893, settlers around Phantom Lake successfully petitioned for a school, which started early the following year in an abandoned bachelor’s cabin in a clearing. There were six students the first year. One of the students, Helen Thode Boddy, later recalled that the cracks between the floor boards were so wide that skunks used to come up looking for crumbs when the students ate lunch. Another student, Paul Heaton, remembered that the students provided their own chairs, and he had to walk to school the first day carrying his chair on his back. One of the teachers was quite afraid of the bears in the area, but Heaton was more worried about the trees. There was a window in the roof to let in light, and when the wind blew he could look up and see the trees swaying back and forth over the roof of the school.

To learn more about Bellevue and Eastside history, contact the Eastside Heritage Center at 425-450-1049 or visit www.EastsideHeritageCenter.org.