The Chesterford Schoolhouse

The Chesterford School in the 1890s was named the Maple Shade School.

Can you name four names that the "Little Red Schoolhouse" in Maple Shade, NJ, was called over the years? The answer is the Chesterford School, School No. 27, the Maple Shade School, and School No. 1.

The "Poplar Avenue" school, now Wee Love day care center, was later "Maple Shade School No. 1, when it replaced the Chesterford School in 1909. "Steinhauer School" was named "Maple Shade School No. 2."

In the beginning the schools where numbered by the County, then later it was by the Townships. It would be worthwhile to know the names and numbers of all the Burlington County schools during the 1800s. After Moorestown separated from Chester Township in 1922 , Maple Shade kept going with the numbers, the Mill Road school being named School No. 3, and the Howard Yocum School being School No. 4.

It was a Neighborhood School-

will add more here later.

Samuel Rudderow and Others
took title on December 16, 1811
under deed book X page 303
sold by Joseph Burrough of the Township of Waterford in the County of Gloucester,
and bought by Samuel Rudderow, Thomas Rudderow, William Rudderow, Joseph Burrough Jr., Isaac Stiles, William Stiles, and Emmanuel Beaggary of the County of Burlington, and John Osler, Joseph Plum, Samuel Burrough, and Reuben Burrough of the County of Gloucester
for the sum of One Dollar
"for the natural love and regard which Joseph Burrough hath for literature and divers other causes."
Bounded by edge of the Mount Holly stage road, Samuel Roberts line, etc...

From the December 16, 1811 deed- "all that lot or piece of land & premises lying being and situate in the Township of Chester in the County of Burlington whereon is erected a new school house"

See how many of the above names can be found in the Chester Township (Moorestown, Maple Shade, Cinnaminson), and Waterford Township (Cherry Hill, Pennsauken) sections-

Episcpal Church, NJ Subscribers 1805 Prayer Book

The Rudderow family were one of the founding members of Saint Mary's Episcopal Church at Colestown. Emmanuel Beaggary was involved in the Church's operations serving in various positions.

It Became a District School (Tax Districts)-

In the book "Chester Township," by Clayton Lippincott, School District No. 27 is named the Chesterford School district. In the 1873 Chester Township Tax Assessor's book (at the Moorestown Library), the School District numbers are listed (27, 28, 29, 30) without the names of the Schools. Sometimes it takes two sources of information to complete a piece of the puzzle, and we learn that the Little Red School house's name was the Chesterford School, due to the the creeks around here to cross, specifically the north branch of the Pennsauken Creek separating "Maple Shade" from the rest of Chester Township. (Sidenote- The next town over was Waterford, now part of Pennsauken and Cherry Hill.)

The four school districts (also tax districts) for Chester Township were-

Chesterford District, No. 27
Built as a neighboring or neighborhood school, then it became a public school.

Chester Brick District, No. 28
Built by the Friends. It was on Schoolhouse Lane near where 73 and Kings Highway cross. There was a wood frame schoolhouse. They replaced it with a brick one. So its name was Chester Brick. That predated the Chesterford School. The Matlacks etc... went to that one.

Moorestown District, No 29

Poplar Grove District, No. 30
It was called Page's school at first. It served the now RCA/ Lockheed Martin area.

From the Chester Township 1873 Tax Assessor's Book-

Names of Persons in School District No. 27

John S. Ruderrow
Isaac F. Ruderrow
Samuel Slim
Matilda Weldon
Isaac Stiles Est.
Joseph B. Stiles
Elisha Shinn
Nathan E. Perkins
John Winter
Christian Frech
Benjamin Wiltshire
Benjamin Stiles Est.
Samuel Wilson Jr.
Robert and John Moffett
Charles McCholister
Charles B. Coles
John R. Mason
John Robinson
Thomas Wilson
Daniel Wilsen
Bridget Smith's Estate
Mary Slim
Levi L. Lippincott

Tax rate 21 cents per 100 dollars.

and from the "Colored Persons Names" page-
Ishmael Handy at Levi L. Lippincott's
Benjamin Brown at Jos. Stiles's
(not sure which others or Maple Shade's or Moorestown's)

Maple Shade, A Village Of 21 Scattered Residences-

A series of Stiles house photos said to have been taken by historian George Decou in 1897 have this note to one of the photos-

"Maple Shade is the present name of the railroad station and locality that twenty years ago was called Stiles's, from the number of families of that name who lived there. Now (1897) it is scarcely a village in pretence, but has two churches, two stores, a blacksmith shop and twenty-one scattered residences."

If you count the residences in the Chesterford School District list above the number is 23. (close) The two churches would be the Episcopal Church on Linwood Avenue, and the former Methodist Church on the north west corner of Main Street and North Forklanding Road. The two stores would be the Fahr's general store and the Klinger's shoe store.

For all the "historians" out there who would argue that the "Little Red Schoolhouse" was not really Maple Shade's first schoolhouse, a arguement which could be won by several ways, it was. The Chesterford School, or School #27, was in the 1890s renamed the "Maple Shade School." The Poplar Avenue school, now Wee Love, replaced it in 1909, a time when Maple Shade was beginning its growth.

Other "Chesterford School" Mentions Found-

The below book was found by a Google Book web search-

Documents of the ... Legislature of the State of New Jersey‎ - Page 654

by New Jersey Legislature - New Jersey - 1870
Statistical Report, by Districts, for the County of Burlington. SCHOOL ... 5
Chesterford, 6 72* % 574 79 188 00 9 29> 3413 72 1630 00 191 00 7041 97 7 49 32

For more Chesterford Schoolhouse mentions and informations from Google Books searches-

Old Burlington County District School Numbers

Chester Township Schools Attendance Chart for 1894.

This is in the Annual Report for the School Year ending June 31, 1894, but during this year the old county numbers were changed to township district numbers, perhaps the change taking effect the following year. 1894 was a time of many changes, foremost being the "Township School Act."

Regardless, this was a time when the names "Chesterford School" and "Maple Shade School" probably had an overlap in unofficial use.

School Numbers Circ. 1900-

The schools of Chester Township (Board of Education) were numbered from West to East. Maple Shade continued using the system after Moorestown separated. Maple Shade now has schools numbered 1-4, and the High school.

From the "1900 Hauck's Excelsior Directory"-

Chester Township Board of Education.
Township Schools.

No. 1- Maple Shade. Located on Camden Pike, in Maple Shade. Anna M. Grady, teacher. Pupils enrolled, 25.

No. 2- Chester Brick.

No. 3- Moorestown.

No. 4.- Stanwick.

No. 5- Lenola.

No. 6- Poplar Grove.

No. 7- West Moorestown (colored school).

No. 8- Moorestown High School.

Some "Little Red Schoolhouse" Teachers-

Emmanuel Beaggary was probably the first teacher, as Clayton Lippincott in his book about Chester Township states that Emmanuel Beaggary was a school teacher. He lived nearby from at least 1793 to 1813 renting from the Samuel Burrough Estate the "Collins Lane house." Clayton Lippincott is correct in that Emmanuel Beaggary lived in the house then owned by John Brock and that he served as an Assessor for Chester Township for several years, so perhaps he is also correct in that Emmanuel was a teacher. With a new schoolhouse opening, I would think Emmanuel taught there. Emmanuel Beaggary was also friends with the Rudderow family through serving together at Saint Mary's Episcopal Church at Colestown.

This is from the New Jersey Mirror, searchable online through the Burlington County Library-

William C. Megargee, who has been teaching the Maple Shade school the past year, died of diptheria last Sunday (February 19, 1893) at noon. The deceased was 18 years of age and a brother of Prof. George E. Megargee of the public school here. He was an unusually bright young man, being a graduate of Swarthmore College and a fine musician. We deeply regret at his untimely death. Interment will take place at Colestown to-day at 10 A. M. ...

We learn here that in 1893, the Chesterford School is now called the Maple Shade School. William's brother George Magargee went on to become the Superintendent Principal for all the Chester Township schools! His obituary states that he started teaching in the district schoolhouses so one would wonder if he taught as well in Maple Shade. His widow, in 1907, lived on Spruce Ave., Maple Shade, according to a directory.

Martha C. Lippincott, (later Martha Davis), taught at the Maple Shade School for years during the 1890s. We have many Maple Shade School class photos of her from a scrapbook started on Dec. 3, 1945. It also has many handwritten notes of information to cross check with other sources to learn much about this teacher.

Maple Shade School, April 1897

Maple Shade School Class Photo, with Martha Lippincott as teacher,
taken in April 1897 by Percy Lovell, Moorestown Chronicle.

Some of Her Family-

From the New Jersey Mirror- (Some corrections made)
March 25, 1875 LIPPINCOTT--BALLINGER.--On the 25th ultimo (February, 1875), at the residence of the bride's parents, near Moorestown, by Friends' Ceremony, in the presence of Mayor Jones, of Camden, Samuel H. Lippincott and Elizabeth (Lizzie) C. Ballinger, daughter of Jacob Ballinger.

Elizabeth C. Lippincott, the widow of Samuel H. Lippincott, and Martha C. Lippincott are listed in various directories such as the "1900 Hauck's Excelsior Directory" with the address of 55 East Second Street, Moorestown.

Martha Lippincott Started at Rachel Rogers' School-

Page 3 in the scrapbook-
Rachel L. Rogers had a school in her home on Central Ave. She was a really great educator- far ahead of her time. She went abroad to study with Educators in Europe. I did my first teaching in that Central Ave. School and had the benefit of her training. Then too she was my first teacher in the Kindergarten in the Friends School at Chester Ave and Second St. where the Moorestown P.O. now stands. I lived at that time on Mill St. with Grandfather and Grandmother Jacob and Hannah Ballinger. Grandfather owned the double house on Mill St. not far from Main St. The Schooleys lived on the other side of the house.

Rachel L. Rogers was a sister of Sarah Sullivan- who was Sarah Rogers at the time. The Sullivans lived on Chester Ave. third door from the corner. The house was later torn down. Joseph and Sarah Sullivan had three children- Marshall, Alice, and Mabel.

Page 4 in the scrapbook-
Alice married Dudley Perkins. Mabel married Francis D'Olier. They are exceptional women- In fact all the students trained by Rachel Rogers have shown exceptional ability.

Some of the students I remember who were in Rachel Roger's school-
Mabel Sullivan, Dudley Perkins, John Hamil, Ethel Burr, John Nicholson, Edith Nicholson, Margaret Roberts (Daughter of Nm & Elizabeth R, married Albert Linton President of Provident Bank), William Roberts, J. Clyde Rogers (son of John Rogers, Rachel's brother), Ernest Stackhouse, Lloyd Heulings and Newell Heulings.

Rachel Roger's School was next to the Charles B. Coles property at corner of Chester and Central Aves.

Page 7 in the scrapbook-

Moorestown Friends High School

This picture was taken from a paper dated 10- 27- 1904. This is where I started Kindergarten- Rachel Rogers teacher, and later taught in this school. George Megargee Principal for many years. The new Post Office now stands on this lot. Corner of Chester Ave. and Second St. Kindergarten room on right. Facing picture- room where I taught (page ripped)/ Second St side.

Taken in back of our Second St. home
Florence May (Temple), Martha Lippincott (Davis)
when they taught in Friends High School.

Teachers Florence May (Temple), and Martha Lippincott (Davis)

Rachel Rogers School Ad

Amos A. Rogers lived in the "Maple Shade" section of Fellowship, specifically his farm is now bisected by Route 73 and starts at about the Route 38 overpass and goes to the Mount Laurel border. (See GM Hopkins 1877 map)

He was married to Martha Lippincott Collins a sister to John S. Collins. His children became very prominent and wealthy citizens of Moorestown. His sons, John S., was president of the Rogers Building and Contracting Company; Albert D., the head of the Rogers Terra Cotta Works, at Stanwick, and Isaac C., a nurseryman, at Danville, N. Y. A daughter Rachel L. Rogers (not to be confused with Rachel A. Rogers, wife of John S. Collins) was a successful teacher and Principal, running her own private school.

George Megargee writeup from a NJ book

William C. Megargee's brother George E. Megargee did well. His widow lived on Spruce Avenue, Maple Shade, according to a 1907 directory. The above quote is from the book "Genealogical and Memorial History of the State of New Jersey .. (1910)."

Martha Lippincott's School Garden-

School Garden at Stanwick School School Garden at Stanwick School

From the book- "School yards, school gardens,"
Author- New Jersey State Board Of Education
Published 1905

You can view the digitzed book and download it at Google Books Page

Note- I sort of have some clues from the scrapbook as to which years Martha worked at Moorestown Friends and which years she was Principal at the Stanwick School in Moorestown, but not very much info, so I'll figure out what I can. I think she also taught at Smithville School. Coming later a brief guess at a few dates. Oh yea- also soon coming is info. on how school reverted back into the Burrough family in 1910. -dennis

The Chester Brick School-

The Chester Brick School was built by the Chester Preparative Meeting of Friends in 1785. The school was built on the Old Ferry Road where it branched off Kings Highway. Later only this small portion of the Old Ferry Road remained and was renamed Schoolhouse Lane.

At the time of the separation of the Society of Friends in 1827, Chester Brick school was retained by the Hicksites. Another school was built nearby for the Orthodox Friends. In 1872 it passed under control of the County and became a public school. In 1917 it closed and was sold to Joseph Matlack who used it to house blueberry pickers in summers. It was destroyed by a fire in 1934.

The schoolhouse had men as well as many women teachers. One of the last teachers though was a man, Chalkley Matlack. In a 1934 newspaper article after the school was burned down, Chalkley gives stories about the school. Here is an excerpt-

The school, which was a one-room affair, contained long, old-fashioned benches up until the time of Anne Bradley in 1864. Miss Bradley had "new-fangled" ideas about teaching school and the first thing she did was to rid it of the ancient accoutrements.

In one corner of the room marked now only by deep crevices in the charred and broken bits of plaster and brick, was a large cupboard where the children stowed their lunch boxes. The doors of the cupboard were painted a dull black and used for blackboards. A large trapdoor led to an attic which was seldom used.