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School for Colored Children
At Trail's Grove

Greensboro Township
The only one in Henry County
-New Castle Courier 1875-

    This settlement or school district derived its name from the fact that William Trail, Sr., settled here, about two miles southwest of Woodville about the year 1833 on 160 acres of land, which is owned by the family at the present time. As old Mr. Trail was classed with the colored race and perhaps the only man of color inhabiting Henry county at that time, it made him a man of some distinction. As time rolled on a few more of like families gathered around this dark spot, and children grew up and were refused admittance into the common schools, and as these people could not well endure to receive kicks from anybody, they united and organized a little independent school of their own, the first session of which was taught in the winter of 1851 and 1852. This little school continued to rise and fall on account of its very scanty support (which was raised by subscription from its patrons) until the year 1869, when it began to receive a portion of the public school fund of the State, since which time it has been in a healthy and progressive condition. Since the secession of these people to the public school fund, they have persisted in having a colored person to teach their school (now district # 9, Greensboro township, in Henry county). We do not think this course is the result of any prejudice or hatred to the white race, but they think like most of our best white Republicans, even those of the abolition school, that the best interest of a school require that teacher and pupil be on a social equality in the highest sense of the word. These people now, in these days of Democratic rule seem to think their plan a good one and feel quite at ease while other colored children of this state are being tumbled out of school like pumpkins out of a farm wagon. The school is being taught this winter by a Miss Laura B. McCown. We believe she has about twenty-five scholars. Miss McCown is quite young, but we have been informed that she succeeds quite as well in keeping the big boys and big girls in submission as any of her predecessors.
    The people of this isolated part of the county are generally industrious and honest in their dealings, most of them owning farms ranging from 40 to 120 acres. They are not very favorable to society, especially not for religious society, having no church organization. We believe some of them are inclined to free thinking. Still they keep up a Sunday school during the warm season of the year. They have a kind of local pride of their place from the fact that so many young people have grown up within its limits in the last forty years without one yet having ever inhabited the county jail. Still they have their faults and plenty of them too. We do not remember, through our long acquaintance with this flock of having ever seen any member of it out asking charity and representing himself to be of the poor people of color. And by the way, it must not be forgotten that they have among themselves a Grange of the Patrons of Husbandry, and think much about being self-supporting.


2001 UEB

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