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The Elimsport One Room School Halloween Prank

By Staff | Sep 1, 2009

Story from Elimsport School.

There is a great story which is a favorite of many local people. As told to Marion McCormick by Elizabeth Helsman. Mr. Charles Bailey, uncle of Elizabeth and also uncle of Robert Russell, was the teacher at the Elimsport School in about the year 1914. An elaborate Halloween prank was carried out by the students under the cover of darkness.

The town awoke to find a large farmer’s wagon perched on the roof of the school, and another wagon on the front porch. It turns out that the teacher had been one of the perpetrators, but when class convened that morning, he sternly addressed the class and said “Now, take it down.”

This is a wonderful photo taken that morning showing the school adorned with the wagons and the children.

One of the boys on the roof was William McCormick, probably about 16 years of age.

There is more to the story as told by Robert Russell, whose mother is one of the school-girls in the photograph. It seems as though a local citizen came along while the hard work was being done in the night and stuttered “What are you guys doing?”

They replied “Why, we are taking apart an old farmer’s wagon so we can put it on the roof top.” “Oh, I’ll help you” said the passerby, and he proceeded to help with the dismantling, hauling up all the parts, and reassemble them on the peak of the roof, all under the cover of darkness.

The next morning the gentleman rose, went out to hitch his horses to the wagon, and discovered his wagon was gone.

He had helped put his own wagon on the roof top of the Elimsport school the night before!