- Contact Us
- Finding Aids
- Additional Digitized Content
- This Week in Mars Hill History
- Liston B. Ramsey Center for Appalachian Studies
North Carolina History Lesson Plans from the Southern Appalachian Archives
- North Carolina History Lesson Plans: Precolonial
- North Carolina Era 2 – Colonial 1600 - 1763: Migration Push/Pull Lesson
- North Carolina Era 3 – Revolution 1763 - 1789: Regulator Songs Lesson Plan
- North Carolina Era 4: Early National – 1789-1836: Family Histories Lesson Plan
- North Carolina Era 5: Antebellum - 1836 - 1860: Rip Van Winkle in contemporary writing lesson plan
- North Carolina Era 6: Civil War and Reconstruction - 1860 - 1876: Views of the Civil War Lesson Plan
- North Carolina Era 7: New South – 1876 - 1900: Subscription Schools in Western North Carolina Lesson Plan
- North Carolina Era 8: Early 20th Century – 1900 - 1929 Lesson Plans
- North Carolina Era 9: Depression and War (1929-1945)
- North Carolina Era 10: Postwar (1945-1975): Post-War Political Cartoons Lesson Plan
- North Carolina Era 11: Recent (1975-2010) Lesson Plans
- Land Use in Western North Carolina Lesson Plans from the Southern Appalachian Archives
- North Carolina History Lesson Plans from the Southern Appalachian Archives
- "Feast and Farmin': A Celebration of Western North Carolina Agricultural History"
LESSON: Subscription Schools in Western North Carolina
UNIT: Era Seven – New South – 1876 - 1900
- The learner will analyze two primary source documents.
- The learner will gain an understanding of the use of subscription schools in Western North Carolina.
- LEARNING TARGET: I can explain how subscription schools served the needs of families in the 19th century.
- Time needed: 20 minutes
- Materials/Equipment: Copies of the original document (and transcription) from 1876 and the transcription from 1877 for pairs of students.
- Ask students what a ‘subscription school’ was. Many will be able to guess simply from the name. [a short term school in which parents paid for their students to
- Give each pair of students’ copies of the subscription school from 1876 and 1877 and have them read through them
- Ask the following questions:
- When and where was each written? [November 14, 1876 and March 1, 1877, both in Madison County, NC.]
- What levels would be taught in the schools? How would we differentiate between those levels today? [Primary, Intermediate, Upper level – generally, elementary, middle and high school levels]
- How much would each level cost? How was payment accepted other than cash (specie)? [$1.00, $1.25, $1.50 per month; could barter with produce at market price]
- How many students were enrolled in the winter session? The spring session? Why might this be? [winter – 31 ½ ; spring – 11 ½. This could
simply be that children were needed for farm work. Some students may indicate that some parents were not satisfied with the work in the winter
- What might be a ½ student? [this could be for attending ½ of the time or it could be for ½ of the courses available]
- What do you believe would be the effect of these schools? Was this a reliable form of income for the teachers? [answers will vary]
- Why do you believe that regions needed to have subscription schools? [students may recognize that schooling was uneven during the time of reconstruction – some places had free public schools and other did not. In some areas the only public schools were primary schools.]
- Assessment will be from class participation and discussion.
- The J. B. Lunsford in these documents is the father of Bascom Lamar Lunsford.
- Southern Appalachian Archives – Lunsford Collection
- According to From These Stones: Mars Hill College First Hundred Years by John Angus McLeod page 99
“The figures following the names of the subscribers represent the number of pupils they agreed to send and/or support. For example, one subscribing one-half pupil was entitled to send one pupil half time. A subscriber paying for one pupil might send three pupils one-third time each. Sometimes in these subscription schools a man with a large family might subscribe one pupil and send a number of his children to the school at