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Other Names: London Heights School
Building Closed: End of 1971-72 school year
Before 1889, children in the London Heights District were taken to Riverview School by steam car. That year a two-room, frame house served as the beginning of the London Heights School (later to be renamed Abbott). Miss Myrtle Evans, Principal of the school, did not know for whom it was named.
Early accounts of the school mention the lack of central heat and sewage facilities, as well as the bench with the water pail and dipper. Dr. Walter Pearson, one of the early Principals, is remembered as having a drum beat to help the children march into the building. The first Principal was a Mr. Frank Colvin. In 1893, when there was no money to pay teachers, pupils were assessed one dollar a month tuition.
In June of 2003, standing on 15th Street looking north toward Troup, there is a cul-de-sac with eight homes on the northeast and northwest corner of 15th and Troup - no signs remain of the building and playground that was Abbott School in 1889.
1903 - On September 3, 1903, the name of London Heights School was changed to Abbott. ( The History of the Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools, 1819-1961 by Nellie McGuinn. During this year, a six-room addition occurred (south wing).
A Jacob Abbott, born early in the 19th Century, was a minister, educator, writer of children's stories and textbooks, who lived well into the 20th century.
The architect for Abbott School was W. W. Rose: Rose also worked on six separate school projects which resulted in additions to the following Hackney-designed elementary schools: Morse, John J. Ingalls, London Heights (Abbot, and Reynolds (Prescott). The strong resemblance of Ingalls to Lowell, Irving, and Eugene Field suggests that in this instance, the addition was more in the nature of a complete reconstruction or replacement. The first and sixth projects involved Hawthorne Elementary, a school Rose more than likely originally designed. These two plans added a total of eight rooms to this grade school.
1909 - Five additional lots near school purchased.
1911 - District 7 was in the BOE minutes, asking to be annexed, only for school purposes.
1913 - First PTA President, Mrs. Anna Lillis.
1925 - Kindergarten cottage erected.
1935 - November 15: First reunion in 45 years held with a homecoming, followed by program at London Heights Methodist Church.
1939 - May: Auditorium completed.
1958 - September: Miss Myrtle Evans, Principal, retired. Reception at London Heights Methodist Church.
1972 - School closed and building razed. Pupils reassigned to Douglass.
1974 - August 20: Agreement between City, Bethany Hospital and School District whereby District sold Abbott, Stowe, and Prescott property to the city for park purposes and the District was able to acquire land for M. E. Pearson School to replace Prescott.
1889-91 - Frank Colvin / 1891-93 - J. L. Howard (to Everett) / 1893-97 - W. J. Pearson / 1898-1900 - C. N. Walker / 1900-06 - Dr. Claude H. Case (assigned 1900) (A. J. Farley also listed) / 1906-07 - U. A. Screechfield / 1907 - Mabel Lasley, head teacher / 1910 - Mabel Lasley / 1911-22 - Florence Dixon (Johnson) (to high school) / 1923-58 - Myrtle May Evans / 1958-72 - Genevieve Lindhorst
Third Ward - Information from Dennis Lawrence, Teacher, Washington High School
The Third Ward stretched north from State Avenue to the Missouri River between 7th and 10th Streets in the town of Wyandotte and was an early home to many African-Americans and whites as well. It, too, became a mostly African-American community after the turn of the century. The 1855 Territorial Census showed a total population of 1,944 in Districts 16 and 17, wherein lies today's Wyandotte County. It also listed 56 slaves and 19 "free Negroes." By 1865, there were 11,622 residents in Wyandotte County, 1,323 of whom were African-Americans. African-Americans were by far the largest minority in the area, foreign born citizens and Native Americans numbering 552 and 259 respectively.
17th Annual Report of the Board of Education of the City of Kansas City, Kansas for the Year 1902 and 1903: p. 97, Eight grades, twelve-room brick, corner of Fifteenth Street and Troup Avenue. Boundary - Beginning at Ninth Street and Oakland Avenue, thence west to city limits, thence north to Northwestern Railroad, thence east to Thirteenth Street, thence south to Stewart Avenue, thence east to Twelfth Street, thence south to Troup Avenue, thence east to Ninth Street, thence south to point of beginning. C. H. Case, Principal
History Site created on December 02, 2002
Page last updated: 02-Jan-2012