Friday, March 11, 2011

Spanish Fork Churchs and Schools

Today is all about historic churches and schools in Spanish Fork.  I thought about doing this in two different posts, but the two things were so connected.  I ended up deciding to just do them together. 

The first church and school that I want to focus on is right at the center of town.  Here is a picture from 1914 and what the location looks like today.

Photo courtesy of the website

I couldn't find anything about this church building.  It looked beautiful, but has since been torn down and replaced with a pretty generic church building.  To the right of the church building is the Thurber School, which was constructed in 1910.  I couldn't find any information online about when it closed down, but the building was eventually turned into the Spanish Fork city offices.  Out of all of the buildings in today's blog, the Thurber School is the only one that still is around.  I was disappointed in how few of the buildings have been preserved in Spanish Fork.  I did find an interesting note about Thurber School written by a student who previously attended the school: "While attending the Thurber School I took part in planting a tree on the North East Lawn for Arbor Day.  Along with the tree planting was included a time capsule box... I was wondering if the box had ever been dug up and opened?"  I guess it's a task for anyone looking for an adventure.

Here is what Thurber School currently looks like:

The next school is just a short walk down the street to the south.  I found a great picture of what Spanish Fork High School looked like in 1914.  Here is the picture and what it looks like today

Used by permission, Utah State Historical Society, all rights reserved.

I have to thank Mark A. McKell who I visited while in Spanish Fork.  He helped me to located several of these buildings including this one, which was especially difficult since many of them are no longer there.

The old high school was demolished and in its place is the Nebo School District building.  Once again I couldn't find information about when it was demolished.  Mr. McKell told me that he went to high school in the old building, and that they used to have tug-of-wars between the juniors and seniors across the stream just to the south of this building.  To the right of the Nebo School District building is the Spanish Fork High School Gym.  This gym is a on the National Register of Historical Places (if you would like a complete list of the national register for historical places in Utah, click here).  However, it isn't even in the original photo, since it was built until 20 years after the first photo was taken.

For the final photo, we've got the 1st ward school building.  Here is the original photo and the location as it looks today:

Used by permission, Utah State Historical Society, all rights reserved.

The school was located on the corner of 5th east and center.  The lady who lives on the corner confirmed that there was a school that once was located on the corner.  Since the school was listed as the 1st ward school, I figured that the 1st ward building was located next to it.  Here is the picture of the 1st ward building from between 1892-1920:

Used by permission, Utah State Historical Society, all rights reserved.

1 comment:

  1. My grandma went to the school you have listed as the 1st Ward School. But in her autobiography, she said it was called the Snell School. She started school in 1908.