Rainy Mountain District 57

On July 9, 1904, Richard B. Williams gave one acre of his land to the district for a school as long as it was needed. The community men went to work, with the help of A. J. Spice, who was a carpenter, and had it ready for school by cold weather. Charles Pever helped to paint the school in the cold weather and almost got pneumonia. The year before, 1903, some of the settlers in the north end of the district hired a man to teach and used a vacant house south of the Jarvis home on the Kerr place.

The school was named Rainy Mountain because a tributary of Rainy Mountain Creek flowed around the edge of the bluff and on north from the school ground. The water came from Eagle Top Peak about 3 miles south. The tributary almost surrounded the school site.

The district was almost 5 ½ miles long. It was the largest one room school in the county, with attendance varying from 60 to 70 students. Because of the large number of students, the school board added 3 twelve foot long desks and benches.

One of the favorite activities was getting permission to carry two buckets from a well almost a quarter mile away. The desks were long and set 2 students. One of the students favorite teachers was Clayton Rogers who taught 1924-25. The students played “Tic-Tac-Toe” and timed Arithmetic problems on the blackboard at noon. At recess he had surprise games as well as the usual anti-over, hide-and-go-seek, and treks into the nearby pastures to look for rocks and plants. When one recited well he was allowed to sit with a friend.

The desks were long and accomadated 2 students. If a boy misbehaved, Rogers made him sit with a girl. One of the students, Marvin Parr, always seemed to excel in geography, finish first, and spend the rest of his time secretly trying to roll apples to the girls when Rogers wasn’t looking.

The building was replaced in 1932-1933 and school continued till the end of 1945-46 term, when pupils were transferred for 3 years. In 1949 the district was annexed to Cooperton, Gotebo, Hobart and Roosevelt. Activities through the years were the same as other country schools.

Acitvities through the years were literary societies, box suppers, programs, spelling and ciphering matches, church, Sunday School, singing school, and W. O. W. lodge meetings. The building was finally moved to Gotebo.

Rainy Mountain Kiowa Indian Mission School

In 1892 the opening of the new Rainy Mountain U.S. Indian Boarding School opened a new era in the education of Kiowa children. It was located about 5 miles south of the present site of Gotebo, and made needless the smaller struggling schools of that region. . The Indian school for the Kiowa at Anadarko was closed and the buildings moved. The director of the lone Wolf Mission became the industrial teacher and farmer at Rainy Mountain.

For nearly 30 years until officially closed in 1922, this centrally located boarding school, well staffed and equipped, represented the main educational
opportunity for the Kiowa. Enrollment was good.

As in most schools, the emphasis was on the practical arts, homemaking for the girls, and farming and shop for the boys. Learning to read and speak English was always an important objective.

As part of the government policy of decreasing the program of boarding schools and gradually getting the Indians into the public school s of their communities, Rainy Mountain closed and the students went into public schools.

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Updated October 25, 2003
Copyright, 1998-2003
Background Courtesy Pat Calton

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