MIDDLE GROVE SCHOOL By: Ron Lee, Principal
School District #3 was organized February 23, 1857. The first school was a home located on property bordering McCain Avenue, near the Reubin Hilfiker residence. This building was later moved to the present site of Middle Grove School on Silverton Road, the land which was donated by the Walter Estate. as a more central location and this fact plus a large grove of fir trees located on this site gave it the name of Middle Grove In 1910 the original building was again moved, this time one-half mile North East on Silverton Road to the Fletcher Farms and became the present home of Mrs Kafte Vent.
The first school was then replaced with a more modern three room school that stood among the tall firs until 1940 when it was replaced by the WPA with the present building core of two rooms. Since 1940 there have been three major additions to the school, the last being two classrooms and a multi-purpose room in 195.
With the Salem City Limits having periodically been extended beyond the Fairgrounds, the Middle Grove School District #3 was reduced in size and in 1944 was consolidated with Salem School District 24CJ. The original boundaries reached from the Fairgrounds and the Hayesville District on the west and north, to the Pudding River on the east.
The present school is located about three miles east of the Fairground on the Silverton Highway. It is in the center of a natural hub where several roads cross and intersect one another making its location easy to reach from every direction. Its rural setting has been changed into a lovely community with many attractive homes and businesses.
The early settler’s interest revolved around the community club which held as its main purpose community betterment and sponsored all activities for community improvement. This club worked harmoniously with the Public School District #3 and functioned as the Parent Teacher’s Organization for many years. Through the efforts of the community club, the present school was erected. New additions to the school have been made under the Salem School District.
At present the first through the sixth grades attend Middle Grove School while the seventh and eighth grades attend the Parrish Junior High School. Among those who attended school in the Original building in the 18901s, and still living in the community or in Salem are Mrs. Lydia (Bartroff) Ross, Mrs. Anna (Bartruff) McDonough, Mrs. Katie (Jefferson) Fletcher Vent, Frederick and Bessie Mitchell, and Mrs. Lydia (Herndon) Scharf. Materials gathered by Mrs. John Van Leaner and Mrs. Lydia (Herndon) Scharf.