Cephas Hollaway; Reccollections of early school life in Warren County, Ohio
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Elder Cephas Halloway
Recollections of Early School Life in Ohio

Arne H Trelvik on 14 May 2005
The Lebanon Gazette 1 June 1882 [copy obtained from microfilm available at the Warren County Genealogical Society]
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We make the following extract from a letter of Elder Cephas Halloway of Union Village, published In the Shaker Manifesto for June. Mr. Halloway gives a very graphic account of early school life in Ohio. He says:

“I was born on the 29th of December, A. D. 1800, in the State of Ohio, which was then only a Territory. My parents at that early date lived, in a rude, log cabin, which was situated in the dense forest. We had no roads, bridges, school house nor even a meeting house. Years passed on and our first school house was built of unhewn logs and covered with split boards. called clab boards.

“It had one room, only, as it was innocent of even a hall or closet. Our place for study was well lighted, having several windows about eight inches long and less in width. Instead of glass these places were covered with paper that had been dipped In oil.

"From some of the logs of which the house was built, the sprouts grew during the first summer, full two feet. It presented a very singular appearance as these long sprouts were growing on all sides of the house. At this date I was six years old, and with this privlige learned to spell and read quite well.

“For books we had Dilworth's primer; Noah Webster's speller and the New Testament. Our teacher had no burden about arithmetic as it was not taught, not even the multiplication table. As our school house was built in the green woods, to a green country, and having a green teacher and greener pupils, It need be no wonder that the writer of this article should be one of the western evergreens.

“At the early date of which I am writing, even small children could be spared but a short time each season, to attend school. They were needed at home and often made quite useful in picking up brush and chips, preparatory for the plough and the hoe.

“My parents, Jacob and Hannah Halloway, became the owners of 170 acres of excellent land, in the Miami valley on which they built a comfortable house and barn. They kept three span of horses and fifteen head of cattle. On account of the depredations committed by the bears and wolves, they were able to keep only a few sheep or a few swine.

“I was about five years of age when my parents became acquainted with the Shakers, and my initiation into the faith of the order, must date, I suppose, about that time.

“Allow me also to make this remark, that I have not been confined to the house one day, by sickness, since I was a very small child. I have not taken any medicine to the amount of one dollar. I never chewed nor smoked tobacco and do not think I have used a gill of spirits for more than fifty years."

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This page created 14 May 2005 and last updated 14 May, 2005
© 2005 Arne H Trelvik  All rights reserved