Draper Graded School
This photo shows Draper Graded School on the right. This is
Fieldcrest Road looking east. Note that the road is not yet paved. (Photo
and information submitted by Herman
A Brief History of Draper
Draper's first school was held in a dwelling house
on Carolina Avenue. When this school was opened in 1908 there were five pupils
and only one teacher, Miss Bessie Howard of Yanceyville. The dwelling that
housed the school was also used as a church and as a meeting place for other
organizations. Miss Annie Garrett, now Mrs. Annie Trivette of North
Wilkesboro, headed this school at the beginning of the second year with an
enrollment of 105. The county superintendent visited her and made the remark
that she was like "the old woman that lived in a shoe," and gave her
Next the county built a two room school in
the old ball park near what is now Draper Junior High. Miss Garrett and a Miss
Anderson taught there for a year and a half before the building burned. The
school when rebuilt was a three room structure placed on the spot where
the present primary department is located. The number of pupils grew faster
than the school plant during these years, and the mill cottages caught the
overflow. A quarter of a million dollar bond issue was voted and several brick
structures were built in the township system. Draper got the first one, an
auditorium and 12 classrooms in what is now the graded school. The new
building was opened for use in 1923.
In 1931 the old wooden structure was replaced by
the present primary department through the P.W.A. At this time eight new
classrooms were added. The latest addition was in 1934 when by the aid of
P.W.A. funds, three more classrooms were added.
Up until 1941 the high school pupils from Draper
traveled by buses to the Leaksville High School. In 1939 the Draper High
School was started with P.W.A. funds and in 1941 the school opened with Archie
S. Daniels as principal. There were ten teachers and an enrollment of around
300. In 1947 the two wings to the high school were added, giving six
additional classrooms, a cafeteria and dressing facilities for athletic teams
for both boys and girls.
In 1952 the high school pupils were transferred to
the new Tri-City High, and the school was changed to a Junior High, taking
care of the 6th, 7th, 8th, and 9th grades.
The cafeteria at the Graded School has undergone
great improvements. The first cafeteria was located in what is now the
supplementary book room for the 4th and 5th grades. This was a small room
about 8' x 10'. The children stood in line in the hall and were served a bowl
of soup and crackers for the sum of five cents. In a few years the cafeteria
was moved into the basement but they had to stand, as there were no chairs.
Soon the cafeteria received aid from the Federal Government and more
improvements took place. There were chairs for the children, and more and
better food. There were three regular helpers, and Miss Ivie Garrett kindly
consented to take over the management along with her regular teaching of the
4th grade. The older girls helped to serve at lunch time. In 1952 the cafeteria
was moved to it's present quarters made possible by combining three classrooms
into one large room. There is an all-time manager and works with the township
dietitian. She has four helpers and they serve around 360 lunches each day.
Today, the Draper Schools have progressed from a
one-room school to two up-to-date schools with a membership of 725 students
and 29 teachers from grades 1 to 9.
This report was made in 1957. Since that time the
Graded School was sold and turned into an apartment dwelling for sometime and
now has been condemned and sits vacant and run down. Draper Junior High is
still in operation.
This information was
also submitted by Herman Searcy
to the Photos