Page 19 - Wallingford Magazine Holiday 2019
P. 19

Finally, in 1711, some 30 plus years after the first activity to hire a schoolmaster, the selectmen hired Harry Bates as Wallingford’s first schoolmaster. Securing a schoolhouse would now become a priority.
Harry Bates had his own thoughts as how his salary be calculated: “Gentel Men, upon second consideration I hereby propose that ye town for incour- agement will be pleased to make sure and confirme to me 50 acres of land whar I shall care to take it up whar it is not already taken up, and let me have the improve- ment of ye old mill pon so called and all other lands that belong to the scool and fifty pounds a year for me for ye time we shall agree upon, the towne appointing a commity to agree with me and all those that sends children to cast their mite towards purchasing a home sted and upon condition I may by yours to serve.” [This is his actual wording and spelling proving no spell check existed]
In 1714, it was voted that all parents whose children were at- tending school pay two shillings for each child. Additional fund- ing needed would come from the town treasury.
Nine persons living west of Quinnipiac River dissented and started a petition. They felt the school site was too far from where they resided.
In 1715, the petition was final- ized. Farmers west of the Quin- nipiac River wanted a school on their side since they were so far removed from the central town district. They wished a school would be located near what is now known as Cook Hill and bor- dering Cheshire. The other dis- trict represented the center of town including South Main Street. Their request was granted, and town school system was divided
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