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UPDATED: 05/07/12                                                                                                    Visitors:  Hit Counter

Mark Twain


Mark Twain School
60th & Swope Parkway
Principal:  Elizabeth Dolan

For years this school district of Kansas City needed a school so at last, in 1849, a little school house was built at 55th and Woodland.  It was named the Hayes School in honor of the man who owned the tract of land on which it was built.  The buildings in those days were very crude and slaves built it from sun-dried bricks.  The school was used until 1868 when it was destroyed by an earthquake.

A new building was then erected at 55th Street and what became Tracy Ave.  It served for 38 years.  Then the people demanded a better building so one was built in 1905 and it was named the Swope School.  In the first year there were 68 students attending and the school graduated two of those students that year.  The school had been in operation for 5 years and was still considered a country school but on March 17, 1910, it was admitted into the Kansas City School District.

Several new rooms were added to the building but as the number of children increased, the patrons demanded a larger and more modern building.    In the summer of 1915, the cornerstone of the new building was laid and, in order to follow the population, the new location was on east 60th St. just east of what is now Swope Parkway.  Once again, the name was changed and became the Mark Twain School.

The new school became one of the most modern school buildings in the United States.  The building was 184 x 160 feet and was built in an Italian Renaissance style.  The exterior walls were built with cut stone, enhanced with stucco and trimmed with red vitrified brick.  All but 3 of the 31 rooms were at ground level and each had direct access to the grounds outside.

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