Throwback Thursday: Chestnut Grove School in Bloom Township

(Provided photo)

Chestnut Grove, once known as Packerville, got its name long before the chestnut tree blight of the 1930’s devastated the once beautiful and useful hardwoods.

The farming, laboring, mining and small business-owning families who populated Clearfield County’s scattered rural communities and settlements, despite their struggles, had the good sense to establish and maintain   school houses for their children’s basic education.

The Chestnut Grove school followed the similar pattern of housing grades one through eight and often in one or two rooms.  A teacher was often a younger woman with a high school education.

Her job was demanding as she had to simultaneously educate children of different ages and abilities with a minimum of supplies and scant pay. These schools have been culturally romanticized, but the job of an educator was tough indeed.

Students from Bloom Township who were fortunate enough to attend high school could travel to nearby Luthersburg.

Eventually, by the early 1960’s, school district jointures closed schools such as Chestnut Grove. Bloom Township became a part of the Dubois Area School District.

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