Union Twp. District 2


The earliest schools in Delaware County were conducted on a basis of subscription: Prior to 1840, each schoolhouse was funded predominantly by tuition paid to the school’s proprietor that also covered a salary for the teacher. Around 1840, revenue from the sale of public real estate was allocated to pay these subscriptions but it often wasn’t enough, with schools returning to the subscription system once the coffers ran dry (Helm, 1881). 

In 1852, an amended state constitution provided resources for the operation of a free, common school system (Natali, 2007) in Indiana. Prior to the new constitution, students in areas without a subscription school either traveled to one or received no formal education. 

It took several years for each township to obtain and disburse the funds that the new constitution provided, so the 1850s were a booming period for early one-room schoolhouses. IN 1858, Thomas C. Poor granted officials a portion of his land for use as a schoolhouse near the northeastern corner of Union Township. Poor stipulated a price of $2.00, and insisted that the rights to the land expire after ninety-five years or after the plot was no longer used for a school (Delaware, 1858). Around that time, a schoolhouse of frame construction- was erected. In 1881, Francis Wagner was the teacher at District 2.

The school closed after the 1917-1918 season as the last Union Township school to consolidate into Eaton (Delaware, 1918). Besse Brandt was the last teacher at the Poor schoolhouse *Delaware, 1917). 

The marker that sits at the original site of the Poor schoolhouse was erected in 1949 (Greene, 1951), but apparently, the schoolhouse was moved a third of a mile east after its closure to be used as a home, as a resident there, Normas Haas Robbins recalled that the home on their acreage was “an old schoolhouse, not too bad- but the yard looks like a weed patch (Haas, 1992).” Haas advised that his family “was told when living at this property that the house was originally the Poor School that had been moved to the location on the 26-acre farm. It is quite possible that the story is only that, – a story (Haas, n.d.).”

1874 and 1887 plat maps of Delaware County don’t show any structure at the site of the present wood-frame building (Griffing, 1877) thought to be the old schoolhouse, and the Delaware County assessor’s office indicates that the structure was built in 1860, just two years after Poor deeded his land. 


Helm, T. B. (1881). Mount Pleasant Township. In History of Delaware County, Indiana: With Illustrations and Biographical Sketches of Some of Its Prominent Men and Pioneers (pp. 268–269). book, Kingman Brothers.

Natali, B. L. (2007). The Impact of Caleb Mills on the Hoosier Education Debate: An Edition of Two Unpublished Addresses (thesis). University Graduate School, Indianapolis.

Delaware County, Indiana. (1858, August 13). Deed Book 20. p. 506.

Delaware County Public Schools. (1918). School directory, Delaware County public schools, Delaware County, Indiana 1918-1919. Muncie, IN. 

Delaware County Public Schools. (1917). School directory, Delaware County public schools, Delaware County, Indiana 1917-1918. Muncie, IN. 

Greene, D. (1951, December 3). Seen and Heard in Our Neighborhood. The Muncie Star Press. p. 4.

Haas, R. (1992). North of Eaton Farm. RobbHaas Family Pages. http://freepages.rootsweb.com/~robbhaas/genealogy/index.htm. 

Haas, R. (n.d.). North of Eaton Farm. RobbHaas Family Pages. http://freepages.rootsweb.com/~robbhaas/genealogy/index.htm.

Griffing, B. N. (1887). Mt. Pleasant Township. An atlas of Delaware County, Indiana . map, Philadelphia, PA; Griffing, Gordon, & Company.

Delaware County Office of Information & GIS Services. (2021). Parcel ID: 0311400016000. Delaware County, Indiana Assessor. map, Muncie, IN.