Adams Township District 6:

Walnut Grove/Emporia

Photo taken August 10, 2021. From the author’s collection.

The schoolhouse that would eventually to serve District 6 was first located in the original school section 16 of Adams Township. Apparently a log cabin, as recently as fifty years ago it still stood, preserved in a barn at Locust Grove farm operated by Davis and Stella Sullivan (Bock, 1970).

It’s likely that a frame building was built to replace the cabin in 1854, when several were constructed in response to an 1851 law that prescribed for a free system of common schools (Kingman, 1880). In 1875, the school was located at the northwest corner of the present-day intersection of State Road 36 and South County Road 250-East, which at that point continued north and connected with an extension of the modern West County Road 610-South (Kingman).

The present structure, a two-story brick school, was erected in 1883 half of a mile west of its predecessor on land owned by D.C. Markle. The town of Emporia -commemoratively named in similar manner to neighboring Mechanicsburg in Henry County (Baker, 1995)- wasn’t established until 1891 (Towns, 1976) so the schoolhouse originally went by the name Walnut Grove (Fox, n.d.). It, along with the school at Markleville, were the township’s only two-room schoolhouses (Fox).

In 1922, the state board of health issued orders condemning the schoolhouse -along with five others in Adams Township- as unsanitary (Condemns, 1922). In 1927, fire from an overheated stove damaged the school building, though it was repaired and opened up after several days of work (Fire, 1927). It is likely that the 1928 construction of the Fall Creek Heights consolidated grade school a mile north of Emporia on Rangeline Road brought the end of the District 6 schoolhouse.

In 1954, the structure was advertised for sale as potentially making for a good motel (In Emporia, 1954). Today, the old schoolhouse is a dwelling.


Bock, G. (1970, October 29). Adams Township Had Ten School Districts. Anderson Daily Bulletin. p. 4.

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

Baker, R. L. (195). From Needmore to Prosperity: Hoosier Place Names in Folklore and History. book. Bloomington, IN.

Towns had different names. (1976, July 3). The Elwood Call-Leader. p. 15.

Fox, J. (n.d.). Adams Township Had 10 Schools. Madison County Historical Society. Retrieved September 29, 2021, from

Condemns Six Adams Township School Buildings (1922, April 14). The Alexandria Times-Tribune. p. 1.

Fire at Emporia School. (1927, March 4). The Alexandria Times-Tribune. p. 4.

School Terms to Close Next Week (1928, April 14). The Elwood Call-Leader. p. 1.

In Emporia. (1954, March 29). The Anderson Daily Bulletin. p. 19.