Fall Creek Township District 3:

Spring Valley

Photo taken August 19, 2021. From the author’s collection.

Indiana State Road 38 transects Fall Creek Township nearly in line with what was once called the New Castle and Lafayette State Road, which opened in the 1830s (Jackson, 2018). Before it was designated as a state highway, the road was an old wagon trail that ran through an area called Spring Valley. 

Spring Valley -a collection of homes around the modern day intersection of IN-38 and South County Road 150-West- was home to many Quakers at one point, including several involved with the Underground Railroad (Jackson, 2021a). Eventually, the homes -just half a mile southeast from a Friends Church- became so numerous that the population increase warranted the construction of a schoolhouse, Fall Creek Township’s District 3. In 1880, the building was situated at the southeast corner of 38 and 150-West, on the land of T.M. Hardy (Kingman, 1880). 

The current structure was completed in 1902 at a time when what’s now State Road 38 ran to the south of the structure (Jackson, 2021). Those traveling by the old schoolhouse today on IN-38 see the building from its back wall.

In 1906, the District 5: Lukens school was closed and its students were sent to District 3.

In 1928, the Spring Valley school was reopened after a year of closure as the result of a petition circulated amongst District 3, whose students had been conveyed to Pendleton (Will, 1928). In 1933 the schoolhouse, abandoned for several years, was sold to Robert Noland of Markleville, who remodeled it into a dwelling (Old, 1933). Today, it remains a home. 


Jackson, S. T. (2018, April 1). Incident involving Douglass highlights history of Spring Valley. The Herald Bulletin. Retrieved December 25, 2021 from https://www.heraldbulletin.com/community/incident-involving-douglass-highlights-history-of-spring-valley/article_f6935c36-b759-5f9b-90c0-126ffade591b.html.

Jackson, S. T. (2021, February 8). Local folks risked their freedom to help runaway slaves. The Herald Bulletin. Retrieved December 25, 2021 from https://www.heraldbulletin.com/opinion/steve-jackson-column-local-folks-risked-their-freedom-to-help-runaway-slaves/article_67f3d412-6269-11eb-8702-ef001392de5d.html.

Kingman Brothers. (1880). History of Madison County, Indiana with Illustrations and Biographical Sketches. Chicago, IL.

Jackson, S. T. (2021, August 19). Madison County schoolhouses. email.

Will Open School (1928, October 11). The Alexandria Times-Tribune. p. 1.

Old School Sold (1933, September 18). The Alexandria Times-Tribune. p. 1.