The first school in Goldfield was actually
built in 1856 in the town of Liberty, as Goldfield was then known. It
was a 12' x 12' log cabin built by the early settlers near where the Methodist
Church now stands. During 1858-59 it was used as a fort at the time of
the Spirit Lake Massacre. The men barricaded the cabin and the women and
children were sent to Webster City for protection. At this time Goldfield
was the county seat of Wright County.
In the southwest part of town a second school was erected in 1861. This
was a frame building and was used as a church, polling place, center for
debates and even a dance hall.
By the close of the Civil War, Liberty had the largest school in the county
with an enrollment of 63. As the county seat moved to Clarion in 1866,
the people worried that the town would become a ghost town. The coming
of the railroad in 1881 created further growth and in 1883 a two-story
schoolhouse with a wooden cupola was built about two blocks east of the
second school in what we now call "Old School Park". In 1889
this was enlarged because of the increasing enrollment.
The Goldfield school district organized it's first high school in 1888.
In 1892 the first class graduated with two members - W.C. Dewell and M.C.
Keith. In 1902-03 the school board broadened the high school curriculum
to meet higher standards and college requirements. There were no graduates
in 1903 to adjust to these changes.
On November 30, 1904, the wooden two-story school was completely destroyed
by fire. A strong wind, lack of water and inadequate fire fighting equipment
combined with the attic fire to leave the school in ashes. After the fire,
students were educated in a vacant store, the Baptist and Christian churches,
and a hardware store.
A new school was bonded for $10,000 at the school election and plans were
made for an elementary and high school on the same site. It was completed
in time for the fall classes of 1905.
Goldfield High School was accredited by the State Board of Education in
the 1911-12 school year. This meant that students might enter any college
or university in the state without an entrance exam.
The state reorganization law passed in 1952-53 caused the reorganization
of the school in 1954 and we became known as the Goldfield Community School.
In 1956 the present school building replaced the "Old School Park"
building. Students helped complete the move into the new school. A small
building was erected to the south of the main school to house two elementary
classes, but it is no longer in use by the school.
student sharing program between the Clarion and Goldfield Community Schools
begun in the 1981 school year found Goldfield students grades 9-12 attending
the Clarion center for morning classes and returning to the Goldfield
center for a class and their extra-curricular activities. Beginning with
the 1986-87 school year the Goldfield Junior High and Senior High students
attend all classes and activities in Clarion. The elementary program remains
Reorganization plans were underway because of state mandates regarding
the sharing program funding in the 1993-94 school year. When it was approved
the new school - Clarion-Goldfield Community School - continued with elementary
in the Goldfield center and Junior and Senior High attending the Clarion
One hundred years have brought many changes to our school. It is hoped
that the memories will live on even as the school itself changes.
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