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Zearing, Iowa 1956 History

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20Community History, Zearing, Iowa
Edna BartleyFlora Stebbins
Lily BryantEdward Stebbins
Tecie Bainter

Night school was available for interested persons in some of the Lincoln township country schools. Persons interested could organize a class, procure a teacher, and journey to the country school for instruction.

George W. Phillips taught a bookkeeping class at Maple Hill No. 5 in 1895. The school house was located in the southeast corner of Section 14. Members of the class were Gertrude Golly, Ray Golly, Claude Golly, Emma Mitchell, Louis Grimm, and John A. Johnston.

George and John A. Johnston were amused in later years by an incident which took place during the bookkeeping instruction. George had given a careful lecture on debits and credits. When George finished, John asked a question. John said that he understood the matter of debits and credits but he wondered where the profits were located.

The Closing of Our Country Schools

Lincoln township voted for a consolidated school in 1919. In those days there were no heated school busses. To eliminate some of the opposition to consolidation it was proposed that a country school be left in each corner of the township. The proposal meant that small children living some distance from Zearing would not be forced to ride in the unheated busses.

After the new consolidated school house was built a landowner in one of the corner districts complained. He wanted his children to have the advantage of the new school. The complaint meant the end of the country schools in Lincoln township. The legal ruling stated that consolidation was effective in all parts of the township. Separate country schools could not be maintained.

Country schools disappeared from Lincoln township many years ago. However, many of us retain fond memories of our country school days.


The township records are incomplete. We have no records prior to 1884. The records from 1915 to 1925 are missing.

The important unit in Lincoln township government has always been the board of trustees. In the early days of Lincoln township the trustees had charge of the township roads. The board also had certain powers in the tax field and in later years took over the supervision of the local cemetery. The importance of the board of trustees has declined in recent years. This is true because the township roads are now controlled by the county board of supervisors.

The township clerk is in charge of the township records. The township constable was important in the early history of the town-

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