Herbert Quick Schoolhouse

99 Counties | FIND Iowa
Mar 4, 2024 | 02:16

Where could kids in the Iowa territory go to school before Iowa officially become a state?

When pioneers first began coming to Iowa, they established one-room schoolhouses all over the state. 


[Abby Brown] Before Iowa even became a state, there were country schools sprinkled all over the place, proving that the early pioneers knew that it was important to educate their children.

Some of the old school house structures still exist, like the one here in Grundy Center. It's called The Herbert Quick  Schoolhouse because famous Iowan John Herbert Quick went to school in this building a long time ago.  

Inside the schoolhouse you can see how kids would have spent their school days.

All of the different ages and grade levels were in the same classroom. Younger students may have been working on their reading skills while older students were trying to solve complicated math problems.

There was only one teacher for all of those different levels of learning. Older students would often help younger students with their lessons too, just like your older brother, sister, or friend might these days.

What else is the same about how you learn today? What's different?

Early settlers thought long and hard about where to build the country schoolhouses. They wanted their kids to have an education but they didn't want them to have to travel more than two miles to get to school.

In the early days kids would usually walk to the schoolhouse, or sometimes ride a horse.

As you travel across Iowa you might see small buildings that look like they could have been country schoolhouses. They might be museums now or maybe they've been converted into somebody's house. But here in Grundy County you can visit a one-room schoolhouse that has been set up to look like it would have looked well over a hundred years ago.

Every county in Iowa has an educational story to tell. Thanks for going back in time with me to Grundy County.