Students Scared Schoolteacher at One-Room Schoolhouse

Children played innocent prank on schoolteacher at their one-room schoolhouse.

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I am sure that there were times that the teacher at our one-room schoolhouse had to muster up courage to unlock the deserted school building and enter it, for it was a well-known fact that sometimes tramps slept in the schoolhouse if they gained entrance, or in the coalhouse.

We played a prank one morning which did nothing to bolster our teacher's confidence. We arrived before the teacher drove up in her Model A. One window in the schoolhouse had a piece of glass broken out, so one of us was lifted up to reach in and unlock the window. The four of us crawled in through the opened window and hid in the dark corner closet. We didn't have to wait long before we heard a key in the door. Our teacher went immediately to the closet to hang her coat, and as she opened the door we all yelled, "Boo!"

The poor lady jumped a foot off the floor. We should have been punished severely but our dear teacher just laughed with us at our big joke. She resigned at the end of the year. I like to think it wasn't because of us.

Jeanette Larson
Story City, Iowa


Back in 1955 a call went out from the editors of the then Capper’s Weekly asking for readers to send in articles on true pioneers. Hundreds of letters came pouring in from early settlers and their children, many now in their 80s and 90s, and from grandchildren of settlers, all with tales to tell. So many articles were received that a decision was made to create a book, and in 1956, the first My Folks title – My Folks Came in a Covered Wagon – hit the shelves. Nine other books have since been published in the My Folks series, all filled to the brim with true tales from Capper’s readers, and we are proud to make those stories available to our growing online community.