School Name: Red/Baumhoer School School District Number: #037
Township: Twn40N Range: Rng12W Section: Sec11
Latitude: 38.223900 °N Longitude: -92.223000 °W
By Peggy Smith Hake
Today the Red School, also known as Baumhoer school, is sitting alone and empty in Osage township about 3 miles southeast of St. Elizabeth. The building is in better condition than some of the other country schools I have visited and it seems to be silently beckoning a friendly invitation to come inside and visit its old school room where the laughter of children once ruled supreme.
About 145 years ago, in February 1858, a man named Joseph McEvoy patented 160 acres of land where Red/Baumhoer school is located in northeast Miller County. I don't believe Mr. McEvoy ever lived in our county but remained in the eastern United States. For many years the land laid unused and forgotten, but finally, in 1873, back taxes had accumulated unpaid on this piece of land so in October 1873, Killis J. Martin, M.C. sheriff, seized it and sold it to a man named Rudolphus Goodrich. Later in 1873, Rudolphus and his wife, Esther, sold the land to a group of people living in Laclede Co., MO. There was other land transferred in the transaction of 1,260 acres to the Laclede County people. They paid $1500 for the large acreage (a good deal in those days). The group from Laclede County included Isaac & Jane Hoskinson, J. H. & Jennie McDonald, Hugh & Desdomonia McCoin, and Erwin & Aristeen Ellis. They kept the land for only one month and then sold it to The Southwest Iron Company for a whopping profit...$50,000 was the selling price!
The Southwest Iron Company did not fare too well over the next few years and must have had many financial problems. On March 3, 1885, those lands were sold to Hamilton and Annie Daughaday of St. Louis. Once again this piece of land was bought for $1500 through a sheriff's sale held on the steps of the old St. Louis courthouse. Twelve years later, in 1897, the Daughadays sold 400 acres to the Osage Tie Company of Miller County. They held on to their successful investment for many years and during this time era, George L. Ramsey, president of the Osage Tie Company, granted 1 ½ acres lying on his property in Section 3, Twp. 40, Range 12, to the Miller County School District. When the deed was made and granted in April, 1898, there was a sentence in the description which makes me wonder if the old Red/Baumhoer school may have once been called "Polly Hill Branch School".
The names of some of the families who have lived in the area surrounding the old Red/Baumhoer school over the past 150 years have included Boyd, Hampton, Goschurger, McLean, Grosvenor, Davis, Casey, Boeckman, Macklin, West, Crismon, Baumhoer, Ramsey, Brown, Lawson, Lueckenhoff, Kemna, Hasenbien, Bax, Singer, Holtmeyer, and others......The land where the old school sits is now owned by the Doerhoff family.
I do not know the last year school was held in the Red/Baumhoer schoolhouse. By 1957, the St. Elizabeth school system had consolidated all the country schools in their district and the doors of these old one-room country school were closed forever. I have a list of country schools in existence during the school year 1930-31 with the names of the teachers and district clerks. The teacher at Red/Baumhoer (School #37) in 1930 was Gladys Belman of St. Elizabeth and the district clerk was Henry W. Steinman of Meta (mail route).
taken from HISTORY OF ST. ELIZABETH R-IV SCHOOLS PART I THE RURAL SCHOOLS
The school was located near the center of section 11 which puts it near the center of the district. This was originally called the Red School and according to John Stuckenschneider it was also called the Polly Hill School. This building was located across the county road from the present Baumhoer School and a short distance away. According to Judge Jenkins’ History of Miller County, because some of the families kept wanting to attend the Charlestown (St. Elizabeth) School, the district was broken up in 1882 with sections 1, 2, 3, 10 and 11 joining the Charlestown District and the remaining sections annexed to the Jack Lawson (White) District. Then in 1896 the district was re-established and named the Baumhoer District, after Herman Baumhoer who owned the land surrounding the school site. This may have been when the new building was built in its present location. This schoolhouse is still in its original condition as it was abandoned when the high school district was formed, even though it was occupied as a residence for a few years by Sam May. It is now owned by Dale and Alan Doerhoff who have tried to preserve it in its original condition. Both the Big Tavern Creek and Wiemer Creek wind through the district, causing many problems for children who had to walk to school. Urban Kemna said he and his sister Ruth rowed a boat across the creek each day, even when there was high water. If it was frozen in the winter they walked across on the ice.