City Directories and History: Bethesda School is one of many in South Carolina that holds a place in the hearts of people in local communities. Built around the turn of the 20th century, the building is typical, of many others in the state. However, the life of the school was in its use and Bethesda like others witnessed everything from the drudgery of lessons, (sorry teachers) to birthday parties, social gatherings, and church services. Bethesda holds a lot of memories for me and others who live in or and trace their origins to Bethesda Community. Please enjoy and let us hear your stories.
Rusty Robinson, R&R – Preservation Specialist
The Yorkville Enquirer reported on June 17, 1891 – “The Bethesda Graded School is operating with H. Watson Smith as Principal and Ms. Lizzie Smith of Blackstock, S.C., as assistant teacher.”
The Herald reported on Feb. 8, 1893 – “That the Bethesda Graded School is in a flourishing condition under the supt. of Mr. W.H. Mills, a graduate of Davidson College. He is assisted by Ms. Janie McConnell of Bethesda, a graduate of the state normal school (Winthrop College), and Ms. Virginia Coble of Laurenburg, N.C.”
The Yorkville Enquirer reported on May 10, 1893 – That Bethesda High School has had its closing exercises and the school is under the management of Professor W.H. Mills (From Camden and a graduate of Davidson College), Ms. Janie McConnell (of McConnellsville), over the primary department and Ms. Virginia Coble (of Laurenburg, N.C.), over the music and art departments.
The Herald reported on Feb. 9, 1901 – “The Bethesda High School has now reopened with Ms. Fannie Moore as Principal and Ms. Mary Sadler as Assistant. Both ladies are from Rock Hill.”
The Herald reported on Feb. 25, 1903 – “Prof. H.W. Scott of Camden has accepted the position of teacher of the Bethesda School and will arrive today. He will board at the home of Jesse M. Moore.”
The Herald reported on May 27, 1903 – “Prof. H.W. Scott, who has been in charge of the Bethesda School for the past session, has returned to his home in Lee County.”
The Herald reported on Sept. 17, 1918 – “The trustees of Bethesda School have secured Ms. Marie Crawford of Gastonia, N.C. as a primary teacher for the next term.”
The Herald reported on Nov. 19, 1918 – “The Bethesda School opened last week with Ms. Mary Gettys and Ms. Marie Crawford as teachers.”
See additional information on other rural schools at Section #25.
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Please enjoy this structure and all those listed in Roots and Recall. But remember each is private property. So view them from a distance or from a public area such as the sidewalk or public road.
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