Brunnerville School House

On August 17, 1854 Elias Bentz and his wife Amanda deeded over 43 perches of land to the Directors of the Common Schools of Warwick Township. For this almost ¼ acre of ground the Bentz’s received $43. This deed was recorded on February 20, 1891 in Deed Book P, Volume 13, page 566.

On the front page of The Lititz Record of December 4, 1924

The photo to the left shows the school building as it appeared about 1879. This portion of the school was brick.

In the Lititz Record of June 21, 1889 it was reported that the Warwick School Board would be purchasing ¼ acre adjoining the school property. The agreed upon price was set at $750 per acre.

On March 31, 1890 another 33 perches was deeded to the Warwick Township School District by Elias and Amanda and this time they received $154.69 for the land. This deed was recorded in Deed Book M, Volume 13, page 499 also on February 20, 1891.

Brunnerville School House ca 1887. Courtesy of Tom Hackman

This purchase of land was most likely to make room for the addition to the school. Notice of this appeared in the column “Brunnerville Briefs” in the Lititz Record on Thursday, August 28, 1896. The announcement was made that “an addition twenty-eight feet long has been attached to our school house. The school will now be graded. No. 1 will be taught by J.M. Reighter and No. 2 by John M. Risser.” The material that the addition was built of was not mentioned, but a deed from 1936 describes the building as a “1½ story frame school building”. The clapboard siding was most likely used to cover the whole building when the new addition was built.

Another land transfer took place on May 20, 1897. This time it was by Franklin Bentz and his wife Amanda. The parcel is rather small, just 1.72 perches, and the amount paid for it was $17.53. Reference is made in this deed that Amanda is the widow of Elias Bentz and that the dower attached to the larger portion of the farm has been satisfied. This deed was recorded August 21, 1897 in Deed Book N, Volume 15, page 351.

After the addition was built. Courtesy of private collection.

In 1936 this school building and property were made available for purchase at a Public Sale held on October 17, 1936. The building is described as being a 1½ story frame school building with 3 tracts of land containing 33 perches, 43 perches, and 1.72 perches for a total of 77.72 perches of land, or not quite a half acre. The highest bidder was Ralph Keith with a bid of $1050. This deed was recorded on December 1, 1936 in Deed Book X, Volume 32, page 20. There was a restriction placed on this deed at that time that follows it down to current times. It cannot be used for a junkyard. The street address of this property is 1404 Brunnerville Road.

From the Lititz Express on Thursday, October 22, 1936: On Saturday the two room Brunnerville School was sold by the School Board at Public Sale to Ralph Keith for $1025 (note difference between deed and newspaper). It was being replaced by a new four-room structure. A desk in the Brunnerville building was sold for $2 to a former teacher, Mrs. Harry Hershey.

From the same paper and date: Brunnerville School, the (new) District Public School is completed and in Session now. There are five grades. The building is a beautiful piece of Colonial architecture. This building continued to grow as the student population grew, and now can be the start of a new story

The new John Beck School as it appeared in the Sunday News, Lancaster, Pa in February 20, 1938.
The brick of the earlier section toward the back of the school house can be seen in this photo taken in 2010. Photo by M. Xakellis.












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