February 8, 2017 -- Swimmer School
Swimmer School at Adams Corner Rural Village of Cherokee National Museum near Tahlequah, Oklahoma. Adams Corner Rural Village is a collection of seven buildings representing Cherokee life in the 1800s before Oklahoma statehood. A self-guided tour of the rural village is part of the offerings of general admission to the Cherokee Heritage Center
“The Cherokee Nation has long emphasized education as a tool for survival. During the 1800s, the literacy level of the Cherokee Nation was higher than that of both Texas and Arkansas. Literacy was spurred on by the use of Sequoyah’s syllabary, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sequoyah ) which aided Cherokee speakers in immediate literacy, enabling citizens to read the Cherokee Advocate newspaper and to keep abreast of the Nation’s issues and events.
In 1841, the Cherokee Nation opened the first free compulsory co-educational public school in the United States. The first public school in Tahlequah opened in the spring of 1846 opposite the southeast corner of the public square. At the end of the 19th Century, there were 124 schools with 28 designated for full blood students, 15 for descendants of freed Cherokee slaves, and the rest were open to all students. A Female and Male Seminary for higher education was also supported by the Cherokee Nation. The Female Seminary was the first school for higher education for women west of the Mississippi River. Studies included Latin, botany, chemistry, physics, and music. After Oklahoma statehood, the state Department of Education granted 62 hours of college credit to the Seminary’s graduates.” -- http://www.cherokeeheritage.org/attractions/swimmer-school-house/
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