How do I locate my great uncle's school records?
November 15, 2005 7:06 PM   Subscribe

How do I locate my great uncle's school records? He was born in 1890 in Northern Kentucky, just outside of New Castle. I'm not even sure what schools were around back then, and I know that would be a good start.
posted by fishieman to Education (4 answers total)
Having worked in a historical society's archives, 1890 rural Kentucky school records might be hard to come by. I'd consider myself lucky to find a diploma -- perhaps a class picture.

Are you just trying to determine which school he attended? That's something you could do by conjecture. Get his parents' names and find where they lived by tax records. That will lead you to the taxing entity.
posted by dhartung at 9:04 PM on November 15, 2005

I'm not sure how long the Henry County Local has been around, but they might have archives. If you're just looking for a high school, you could also search the (Louisville) Courier-Journal sports archives. Basketball has always been big in Kentucky, and the state high school championships for boys go back to at least 1918. The only high schools in Henry County today are Henry County High School, in New Castle, and Eminence High School. Schools in that part of the state are usually named for counties or towns. Present-day high schools in the area would be Trimble County, Carroll County, Gallatin County, and Owen County, and most of these probably go way back. I'm fairly sure that Carrollton High School and Campellsburg High School, located in the respective towns, existed back then but are no longer around.

On further googling, I found this KHSAA (athletic association) list. The eligibility lists section has a long list of high schools from the 1930s on--perhaps a little after your great uncle's time, but maybe still useful. The schools aren't sorted by location, but the ones in the area include: Locust, Worthville, Sanders, Ghent (all in Carroll County); Lockport, New Castle, Port Royal (Henry County); Gratz, Glencoe, Owenton (Owen County); Sparta, Warsaw (Gallatin County); Milton (Trimble County).

If you're able to find whether your uncle went to school in Henry County or elsewhere, I might be able to help narrow the search a little further.

It's a small world... I went to preschool in New Castle
posted by komilnefopa at 10:24 PM on November 15, 2005

New Castle is in Henry County, so you might have some luck getting in touch with someone in the Henry County School District that could help you with the history of schools in the region. It was probably the product of consolidation about 40 years ago like most county schools. You might have some luck if you find out the names of the schools that were around before consolidation.

Also, Kentucky Explorer magazine is a "major" (as opposed to photo collections published by churches, or something) publication that focuses on old photos, stories, and that sort of thing. I don't know if they keep huge archives of old stuff, but they might be helpful.
posted by reese at 10:31 PM on November 15, 2005

It's worth asking - are you sure he had formal schooling? Unless you have some particular reason to think otherwise, if he was born at the turn of the century in rural Kentucky, I would assume he didn't go to school.

If you know his profession was something which required schooling, or if he was from a prominent family, you might start with universities in the area (University of Kentucky for example, founded in 1865). Institutions of higher education will probably be your best bet for researching records. I would call the library and ask for the person in charge of the school archives.

If you're looking for information on a secondary school, try calling the Henry County local government directly. Someone who works there may know the history of schools in the area and if any records exist.
posted by peppermint22 at 10:37 PM on November 15, 2005

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