SCHOOL'S OUT -- FOREVER!
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Well, okay -- not in every case. Some of these schools are
"decommissioned," and merely waiting for someone to have a more lucrative use
for the property before they taste the wrecking ball; some of them are in use as township,
county or town buildings like the police stations, dispatcher's offices, etc,; some of
them are still in use as learning institutions. In fact, in some cases, I don't even
know the status of the buildings. This is noted, as applies.
You see, aside from a rare few of these structures, most of the photos are of buildings in and around Cincinnati, southwestern Ohio or southeastern Indiana that caught my eye while I was 'running away from home' on weekends, whether with or without Tony. Most of the photos of the cutie-pie Butlerville school, in fact, were taken a year or more before Tony and I even started dating.
Which is to say, I was already brain-damaged when he met me. Don't worry -- he had fair warning, and he warned me, likewise.
There are no pictures of my dear alma mater here. Why? Because, for the most part, these schools fit a pattern -- they are in the area listed, and they were built, or at least appear to have been built, between 1930 and 1950. Do not ask me why this period of school architecture caught my eye. I also like Art Deco architecture, but the WPA-era schools (and somewhat before and after) don't really qualify -- some of them sort of do, but that isn't really it. I don't know, for that matter, what it is. The school buildings I learned in weren't especially attractive in this way. And besides, I was a miserable bastard in school, though I got good grades (that's what happens when you don't have a social life and don't get knocked up when you're 15); my school was built in the late 19th Century, then slapdash renovated repeatedly, in a sort of genetically cum architecturally mutating fashion that just screams 'poor tobacco district school with occasional state subsidies!' Which is to say, the only resemblance it bears to the photos below is its general geographic location.
If you see that my information on any of these buildings is inaccurate, by all means PLEASE send me an email immediately and inform me otherwise! I'd rather know, because I'm attempting to archive these photos. I find them aesthetically pleasing, for my own part, but I also understand that there may be people who attended these schools at some point in their history who might enjoy looking at the photos for slightly more elevated purpose. The more accurate my archive is, the better resource it is, both for me and for others who might find the photos interesting or educational in some manner.
There is a second page of photos (small, admittedly, at this point) containing images that are from other geographic locations. As of today, this consists of pictures of Sandoval School in southern Illinois. Other schools will be added as my travels allow, however. Additionally, there are pages of miscellaneous photos from Tony's and my travels in and around the Midwest, Southwest and parts of Canada, that eventually will be added. Just because I love you, my random Google-hound, so much, yes. Kisses.
Anyway, if you're just a visual or architecture freak and don't even care about the particular schools -- enjoy. If you're a photography freak, I'm afraid most of the photos will be disappointing in that respect -- somewhere along the line, my favorite camera started freaking out (the back started flopping open with film in the carriage and messing up the exposures), and on top of that, my scanner is an enormous hunk of cheese, so the quality of the original photos is decidedly not reflected by the scans that appear on your screen. All the photos on this page were taken on Nikon SLR cameras -- some on a Nikon N-60 circa 1999; the rest, on a Nikon FG circa mid-1980s. All were taken (as is fairly obvious, I expect, to "real" photographers) with a medium-range zoom (20-70 or thereabouts) that can impart a somewhat unpleasant fisheye distortion. These weren't meant to be art shots, Ansel, so shut up. They're just the compulsion resulting from the obsession of an otherwise fairly sane pedant who likes school bulidings, K? K.
If you attended the schools, and you find some pleasure looking at old photos of your school again -- that much better. My old elementary school is about to be demolished to make way for a new school. I wish I were sorry, but frankly -- I can't really be. Graduation, for me, was like being born a second time. Imagine how well I'd have done in school if I'd liked it.
|Fayetteville, Ohio (Brown County)||Fayetteville-Perry Schools main building; still in use as a school building, as far as I know.||Butlerville-Harlan Elementary School (Butlerville, Ohio)||This is my favorite -- the one that got me started on this whole adventure.|
|Fayetteville, Ohio (Brown County)||Main entrance of school.||Butlerville-Harlan Elementary School (Butlerville, Ohio)||I was driving on the Friday of a Thanksgiving weekend with nothing better to do back around 1995.|
|Fayetteville, Ohio (Brown County)||Gymnasium entrance.||Butlerville-Harlan Elementary School (Butlerville, Ohio)||And I found this cheeky, clever old school building on the side of the road.|
|Byrd Township School (Decatur, Ohio)||Building appears to still be in use, but not as a school; Decatur kids apparently attend schools within their county (Adams) rather than locally.||Butlerville-Harlan Elementary School (Butlerville, Ohio)||It is, in fact, still in use -- it's part of the Little Miami/Blanchester Local School District (can I hear an Amen?)|
|Byrd Township School (Decatur, Ohio)||In fact, the building appeared to be in use as a dispatch office, perhaps for the local police, fire department or EMS.||Butlerville-Harlan Elementary School (Butlerville, Ohio)||Because you're about to see the usual results of demobbed school buildings.|
|Byrd Township School (Decatur, Ohio)||Really, really nice molded concrete or carved limestone (I'm not an architect or stonemason) entry of Byrd Township School building.||Butlerville-Harlan Elementary School (Butlerville, Ohio)||I LOVE that Prairie style tower cap. This is just a lovely little school, and I am so glad it's still in use as a school (so it won't be razed in a week, hopefully).|
|Archbishop Alter High School (Kettering, Ohio)||This Catholic high school is still very much in use (a few blocks from my house, I hear the marching band rehearse in the spring and fall, from my front porch)||?Union County, Indiana somewhere||I have no idea. It's obviously out of use. There is some thought it might have been a private school.|
|Archbishop Alter High School (Kettering, Ohio)||Expanded view of Alter High entry||?Union County, Indiana somewhere||As the cornerstone shows, the school was 'consecrated' or dedicated, or whatevah, in 1932.|
|Dwight L. Barnes School (Kettering, Ohio)||The Dwight L. Barnes School doesn't appear to be in use as a school -- it is, however, the central location for the Kettering Board of Education.||?Union County, Indiana somewhere||"Enter Ye To Learn..."|
|Dwight L. Barnes School (Kettering, Ohio)||Honestly, this is just a beautiful old building. It's in exemplary condition on the outside (I've never been inside) and appears to be pre-WPA -- too much detail.||?Union County, Indiana somewhere||High school entrance. I guess it's safe to presume it's hewn of that highly-coveted Indiana limestone.|
|Dwight L. Barnes School (Kettering, Ohio)||In fact, here's some of that detail I mentioned -- this concrete freize hovers above the main entrance.||?Union County, Indiana somewhere||"Leave Ye To Serve." These mottos were common to Jesuit schools, which is why I suspect it might have been a private school.|
|Dwight L. Barnes School (Kettering, Ohio)||The southern half of the entrance to Barnes, shot from standing near Far Hills Avenue (Ohio 48). This baby is immaculate.||?Union County, Indiana somewhere||Grade school entrance.|
|Dwight L. Barnes School (Kettering, Ohio)||I mean, look at those lines ...||?Union County, Indiana somewhere||Obviously, the school is in use as a garbage storage facility for the (unknown at this date) town.|
|Dwight L. Barnes School (Kettering, Ohio)||It's more Deco than WPA, really. The stacked and diminishing towers ...||?Union County, Indiana somewhere||Yeah, if you needed more proof the place was demobbed -- here you go. The rusty padlock and chains tell it all.|
|Dwight L. Barnes School (Kettering, Ohio)||The molded concrete and arched doors ...||?Union County, Indiana somewhere||But somebody cared about this place, originally -- nice molded detail (bad exposure, though -- see next shot)|
|Dwight L. Barnes School (Kettering, Ohio)||Dig this tower, man. Wouldn't you have felt like you were going to school in the bloody Bastille?||?Union County, Indiana somewhere||Some workmanship went into this shady lady, all right.|
|Dwight L. Barnes School (Kettering, Ohio)||And the decorative detail around the second-floor windows.||?Union County, Indiana somewhere||Side view -- sad.|
|Leibold School (Miamisburg, Ohio)||Another Catholic school. Nice concrete/stacking, though - must have been built somewhere around the 40s.||?Union County, Indiana somewhere||Cornerstone -- detail below.|
|Leibold School (Miamisburg, Ohio)||And it's in wonderful condition.||?Union County, Indiana somewhere||"1932 AD" -- thus far, this has helped me NOT AT ALL in finding out when, where or what this obviously educational facility was or is.|
|Withamsville-Tobasco School (Withamsville, Ohio)||As far as I know, this school is still in use as a school.||Unknown school, Adams County, Ohio.||It's clean and in reasonably good repair -- probably the dispatcher's building or a storage facility.|
|Withamsville-Tobasco School (Withamsville, Ohio)||It also looks to be a faux WPA-era building -- my guess is, it was built in the 1960s ...||Unknown school, Adams County, Ohio.||No original location/ID marking of the school are left, however. But the big hedges and long front walk make it, quite clearly, a demobilized school.|
|Withamsville-Tobasco School (Withamsville, Ohio)||And yet, it has the stacked entry and stainless stell lettering.||Unknown school, Adams County, Ohio.||I love this image -- shot straight across the main hallway. Sigh. I wish I knew more.|
|Withamsville-Tobasco School (Withamsville, Ohio)||It's a mystery.|
|Withamsville-Tobasco School (Withamsville, Ohio)||There were seasonal construction paper decorations up in the windows, so if it's not still a public school, it's a pre-school or Headstart or something.|