Wright City R-II School District History
1870: Wright City established the first public school (Built on lots 7 and 8 in block 7.) which was taught by Landon Rummons, a stern, honest and upright man. During the Civil War, at the battle of Vicksburg, Mr. Rummons lost his arm and was carried off by his good friend, Henry Painter. Mr. Rummons was the father of 2 children and practiced law after he discontinued his teaching career. He even served as circuit clerk and recorder of Warren County for a number of years. Before 1870, the children were said to have learned their “3 r’s” in a little subscription school run by Mr. Sexton in what was later known as the old Lyon home. Other sources say that the first school was housed in the main church of Wright City (a Methodist Church of German Descent). Those accounts say that the church was later torched and burned to the ground by Union soldiers during the Civil War.
1906: A new white frame school building was built northwest of the first school in the location of the current Liberty Christian Academy brick building. Per Wright City News Article, Nov. 12, 1906 was the first day of school in the new building. It included grades 1-8, which were taught by 2 teachers.
1916: Superintendent O.P. Browning was hired to oversee all the township schools.
The Wright City grade school employed 2 teachers and O.P. Browning also taught/tutored 9th grade prior to 1922 (unapproved by the state, but students were allowed to take an examination for entry into 10th grade)
Township Schools: These buildings were also used for community affairs. As the townships faded, the small schools hung on well into the 20th century because they still reached the rural school children before school buses became available. In Warren County there have been 62 of these one-room school houses on record. Wright City School District has had several of these schools, some as listed below: Detailed History of Wright City Township Schools
- Blattner School- SE of Wright City, located on the NE corner of the intersection of Blattner Road and Stringtown Road.
- Forest Grove- Organized in January 1859. Located south of Wright City on the southern edge of Hickory Grove Township.
- Gibson School- School for African American children- Located on Highway J between Hemphill Road and Godt Rd. This school closed with the final integration into Wright City’s school district in the Fall of 1962.
- Godt Springs School (formerly called Gilkey School)- Northwest of Wright City on Bell Road, approximately ½ mile north of Klausmeier Rd.
- Hughes School- Archer Road and South Service Road
- Liberty Grove School- South of Wright City, next to the St. Charles County line
- Locust Grove School- Located across Bell Road from what is now American Bank. This was possibly the only school here prior to the Civil War.
- Meridian School- Served Warren and St. Charles County students. Much controversy surrounded this district upon the consolidation of schools in 1948.
- Oakdale School (formerly called Quincy)- South of Blattner School District in Hickory Grove Township.
- Pitts School- Highway M, west of Christmas Tree Farm
- Pleasant Hill School- Ranch Road, between State Hwy AA and North Stracks Church Road, might be part of Warrenton.
- Rocky Ridge School (formerly known as Schnick School)- Schuetzenground Road, near the Harmonie Church area
- Tuque School- Highway O, west of Links Road
- Upper Charrette School- In the heart of Innsbrook on the west side of Highway F
- Wide Awake School- Intersection of Highway T&M
- Wright City’s School, Located where present-day Liberty Christian Academy resides.
Fall 1922: Wright City's first 9th grade class started, thus recognizing the district as a third-class school.
The district hired a new teacher/principal, O.E. Kettlekamp, at a salary of $150 per month, and classes were held in a room at city hall for no rent.
5 students: Forest Strathman, Richard Koopman, Wayne Stoff, Gladys Nieburg & Arline Astroth (17 additional were possibly tutored)
Those 5 students paid tuition of $25 per month, plus the cost of books (with the exception of Wayne Stoff who was hired to be the janitor). Handwritten Account
1923: April 28 bond issue passed 164 to 65 for $3,500 to add 2 rooms to the grade school in order to house the high school classes.
Fall 1923: An additional teacher was added for the first 10th grade class, thus recognizing Wright City as a second-class school
1924: The first 2 year certificates were earned.
1929-1942 and 1943: L.F. Gooch was superintendent, overseeing the school shift to a full 12 grade school and a 1st class school system. His tenure also saw the construction of the school building, built in the late 30’s. (Keep in mind, we were at the height of the great depression at that time). He taught social studies, political science, and mathematics. He also coached both boys and girls basketball teams for many years.
1930: The third high school teacher was added.
1931: The first 12th grade class graduated. A non-resident fee of $25 was charged per pupil. Class of 1931 Article
Ann Stamer has been given the credit for writing our high school song in the thirties. Ann was an English teacher who wrote many poems and clever jingles. She also produced and directed many of the school plays.
1933: The fourth high school teacher was added.
From the 1933 yearbook: The local student body is made up of girls and boys with a wide range of addresses. The following post offices are represented in our directory: Warrenton, Foristell, Wentzville, New Melle, Marthasville, and Wright City. An interesting fact about our school is that 56 students out of the total enrollment of 75 are non-residents- a good sign that we are growing. (Wentzville didn’t become a 12 grade school until 1938)
Oct. 22, 1935: It was decided to build a brick school building with work beginning in June of 1936 and completed in 1937. While they built the new building in the place of the old frame building, classes were held in the educational building at the church next-door (Evengelical & Reformed Church- now Immanuel UCC). According to Ellouise Hasekamp “it was rather hectic getting organized, but there weren’t many students at that time.” Letter from Ellouise Hasekamp
At completion, there were 11 rooms and a basement for a total cost of $25,000. There was no attached gymnasium, but there was a red barn-like building in the field at the northwest corner of the building. A stage was built for performances, and dressing rooms were under that stage. There were 2 giant stoves in 2 corners of the gym and bleachers lining both sides of the room. Above that stage was a chalk scoreboard which had to be well manned during ball games.
1948: Missouri schools were consolidated, and the township schools became part of Wright City R-2
A $10,000 bond issue approved to build a vocational agricultural shop
1951: A gymnasium and soon after, 8 classrooms were added on the north side of the building.
1958: Gibson School grades 7 & 8 moved to the Wright City School, so there are no longer 8 grades in the 2 room building on Highway J, but 6.
1962: Grades 1-6 at the Gibson School were integrated into the Wright City School. Primary grades and the cafeteria moved into the metal extension of the brick school building.
1967: Construction began on the Westwoods Road high school. While designed for high school, it housed 3rd-6th grades starting after Christmas of 1967. This $250,000 bond issue built 13 classrooms, a cafeteria and offices.
1970-1971 and 1971-1972 Wright City Boys Basketball (2nd at State in 1971)
1972: A gymnasium was built at the new high school site and the building was utilized as a high school (grades 7-12). Since the school had no more bonding capacity at the time, a non-profit corporation was created and backed by patrons to build the gym. During the build process, the non-profit leased the property or space from the school and kept building costs low. When that gym was completed, they leased the space back to the school and Wright City paid off the 5 year lease in 4 years.
Boys basketball also won 2nd place at state and received the good sportsmanship award.
1987: Boys basketball 4th at State
Fall 1989: The elementary school on Wildcat Drive is complete and equipped for approximately 560 students: 60,000 square feet of classrooms, a library, gymnasium with stage, and a cafeteria.
1993: Baseball 4th at State and Softball State Champs
1994: Baseball 4th at State and Softball State Champs
2004: Current middle school is built
2007: Current central office built
2009: East Elementary is built
2015: Preschool is built
April 5, 2022: Proposition 1967 and Proposition 2025 each pass with 80% and 78% respective approval. Plans to build a new high school, add on to East Elementary, convert the current high school into central office, and convert central office into an additional preschool building are underway by the end of the year.
January 17, 2023: Work begins at the new high school site on Roelker Road
For more school information, visit our alumni page at https://www.wrightcityalumni.com/schools