History of Ogden School


The pioneers of Liddieville community came originally from Kentucky and Mississippi, and as more and more families moved in, the necessity of some sort of school was seen, but this need did not become acute until about 1890.

The first trace of any school near the community of Liddieville is an old record book of the Excelsior School.  The head schoolmaster was R.T. Kilpatrick, first public school teacher in the Ogden school.  His school opened July 27, 1874.  Mr. Kilpatrick taught his 29 pupils reading, spelling, writing, mental arithmetic; written arithmetic, geography, English grammar, history and philosophy.

Another school known as Big Creek School opened on May 16, 1881, with Wiley G. Doyal as the teacher.  An old report gives the names of the pupils as Newton Williams, Alma Williams, Retta Wright, Houston Shelly, Fannie L. Humble, Maurice Ogden, Carrie Ogden, Liddie Ogden, Emma Lea, Anna Lea, Carrie McKenzie, Lewis Slaughter, William Humble, Katie L. Walls, Lydia A. Walls, Harry E. McKenzie, John W. Slaughter and Lizzie Eaton.

In 1893 another school was opened near Liddieville and classes were taught in a cabin on one of the plantations.  The school session covered a period of three and sometimes four months.  To make it possible for a school to be established by the police jury, the number of pupils attending had to be above the minimum of 10.  Two children under school age were sent to this school in order to meet the requirements.

Three years later, in 1896, a one-room school house was built on the site of Tom Richardson’s home.  Superintendent John L. McDuff recalled that he had a cousin by the name of Miss Ed Parker teaching in this school, and that it was often necessary for him, then a lad of 14 or 15, to drive Miss Parker from Chase to the school in a buggy.

In 1897, Joseph Bryan was head of the school and the next year gave way to Miss B. Bonner.  The school building which was located on the site of Mr. Richardson’s home was outgrown by the year 1903 and the Methodist Church was put into use as a school building.

The curriculums were made up primarily of the standard three R’s.  Instruction was one of the individual recitation type – the older boys and girls being used to help the teacher to instruct the younger pupils since there was no division of the children into grades each child advanced according to his/her ability to learn.

In 1905 a two-room building was erected at the present location of Billy and Katherine Ritchie’s home.  Because of the rapid increase in population in the community, and the consequent larger number of pupils, a room was added to the school in 1911.

Miss Edna McDuff was a teacher in the Ogden school about the year 1914, and records show that in 1915 the faculty members were H. Luther Works, Miss Alta Robinson and Miss Christina Thompson.  Under the leadership of Mr. Works a bond issue was voted to build a new school building.

The school was made a junior high school in 1920 and two years later was made into a senior high school.  First graduates from the school were Lillian Peel, Gracie Turner, Wiley Wooldridge, Charlie Ross, Lee Wooldridge and Henriette Turner.

In 1939 enrollment in the high school was 71.  There were 180 students enrolled that year in the elementary school.

Up to 1935, out of 75 graduates 48 percent entered college and of that number 20 selected the teaching profession.

The gymnasium and home economics cottage, costing together $18,000, were completed in 1938. The Class of 1938 was the first class to graduate in the new gym.  We were told by class members that while the Home Economic Cottage was under construction the Class sold lunches to the construction workers to make money for linoleum for the kitchen floor in the new home economic cottage.

In 19??, the existing school building was remodeled with the removal of the second story on the High school building.  Also a elementary building was constructed .  (need more details)

The old high school building was demolished and a new modern building was constructed in 1963-64.  Also the existing gym was enlarged to accommodate more people for school events.  During the constructed phase classes and offices were located in the elementary building, gym and Ag department.  The class of 1965 was the first class to graduate from the new building.

In the fall of 1970 Ogden high school was integrated. (need more details)

A new cafeteria was constructed in 1976-77 along with some improvements to the elementary classrooms.

The High school was closed in August, 1993 in a special meeting of the School Board, making Ogden a Junior High School with classes for Kindergarten through the 8th grade.

In October, 1996 the Junior High School was closed sending the 1st through 8th grade students to attend Fort School.  This made Ogden a primary school with classes for Pre-K, kindergarten and special education.

In May of 2003 the School Board voted to close Ogden Primary School.  This decision was based on the expense of repairing the school building that was damaged by a fire.  Students were transferred to Winnsboro Elementary School.

In closing the early pioneers faced many struggles to obtain an education. Most had to work long, hard hours in the fields and in the homes, leaving few hours to devote to the “three R’s”. Their vision to build a school in the Liddieville community provided a place where many students would receive a quality education. A dedicated group of principals, teachers, and staff served Ogden School willingly and patiently for well over a hundred years.


Generations of families in our community received education at Ogden School.   Parents, children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren of the same family attended classes at Ogden.


Now the doors are locked on the buildings of OHS. There remains evidence of a fire that destroyed some of the high school building.  The home economics cottage has been purchased by a former classmate and moved to a different location.


As we look back, we remember those principals, teachers, staff, classmates, and graduates that once walked the halls of Ogden and the impact they made on our lives. 


Our lives were touched. Our lives were changed. We laughed! We cried! We learned! We saw many changes during the 20th century. We will always be proud to say,



Note: Parts of this history was taken from back issues of The Franklin Sun local newspaper of Franklin Parish..