Flashback Frank – The Tipperary School in Cannonsburgh Pioneer Village

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How many of us have visited the wedding chapel in Cannonsburgh
Pioneer Village near downtown Murfreesboro?

Did you know that the wedding chapel was once more famous
like the Tipperary school in LaVergne from 1915 to 1925?

The Tipperary School was located on what is now Waldron Road, near the
intersection with Jones Blvd. about a mile south of the tracks
La Vergne. Currently, this area is mainly industrial.

Tipperary School was first named Gambill School in honor of
Director of Charles H. Gambill School. Well, it was in 1915 when the
song, “It’s a Long Way to Tipperary” was popular, so the kids
unofficially named their school “Tipperary”. The name stuck.

Now back to the beginning of the Tipperary school.

On July 6, 1915, George Noe and Allen Sanford and their wife Lillie Sanford
ceded one acre to the Rutherford County Board of Education.

Tipperary School was a one-room, one-teacher school building.
as you can imagine. The building was a rectangle, weather-
plank structure with a tin roof. Three windows aligned on each side and

a small window was at the back near the professor’s desk. Before
of the room was a pot-bellied stove. Water was transported from the
near Pearson and Waldron farms.

The first teacher was Audrey Williams Moore. Other teachers more
years included Ruth Omahundra, George Williams, Jo Lena Bond,
Gutha Williams, Fannie Bell Paul Taylor. The last teacher in 1925 was
Hazel Thomas.

Class sizes varied depending on the planting and harvesting seasons.
The students even brought younger siblings to school. All
students had to be quick, neat in appearance, polite to
teachers and each other, and school officials
building and land.

A form of punishment for an offense was the good old
‘write off in a readable hand. Radiation was considered a serious
punishment because it takes twice as long to write off.

Students went to school on foot or on horseback. Gutha
Williams recalled a moment of crisis when a student drank a
amount of horse liniment. Mrs. Williams ingeniously gave the child
a handful of lard – yes lard – to eat. At another point, a boy was riding his
pony in the classroom aisle.

Teachers were expected to maintain strict discipline, dress
appropriately, participate in community activities, attend church

regularly and refrain from any social engagement with men. For all this
they were getting $ 40 to $ 50 a month, including $ 18 for boarding.

The Tipperary School closed in 1925 with the students being
transferred to LaVergne School near Old Nashville Pike.

But Tipperary school was not over – not yet …

Sometimes vacant, the Tipperary School was a home, warehouse and
even a shed for cattle and hay.

In March 1976, Mrs. Robert Carrothers, owner in 1976, donated
the old Tipperary School building at the brand new Cannonsburgh
Pioneer Village in Murfreesboro, where it turned into a chapel.

A bell tower was added as well as stained glass windows, an antique
organ and church pews; who all made old Tipperary
The school a picturesque setting for weddings.

Enjoy this and 2,000 more stories from County Rutherford
history by visiting www.rutherfordtnhistory.org

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