Pictured is a photo taken this evening of the old Grier City Schoolhouse, 190 Grier Avenue, in Grier City (near Barnesville) in Rush Township. What do you know about it? Do you have any photos to add?
A neighbor said the school, which taught first to eighth grade, hasn’t been used as a school since the 1960’s. He added that the latest residents to the home turned the downstairs of the school into living space.
Another fact the neighbor noted, was that the building used to have a tube-like fire escape that the students would have to slide down in case of a fire. It was located at the back of the school, but has since been removed.
According to Schuylkill Parcel Locator online, the building was built in 1920. The last sale date was September 30, 2002 for $70,000 to Robert Rozier and Joseph Lyon of Annapolis, Maryland. (source)
Marilyn Felsoci of Hometown said, “One of the best things about the school was a very large tube on the side of the building that we would have to slide down during fire drills we loved it!
I was bussed when busing wasn’t very popular. From fourth to eighth grades’ from Hometown!”
Despite having power, the building currently appears vacant.
Mandy Smith, of Coaldale, said on Facebook, “My father lived there for maybe a year or so. Around 1990/91.
I loved playing school there with the chalk boards semi intact upstairs.
A woman owned it named Susan Bush. She bought it and converted it into a studio where she made luggage.
The downstairs had 2 big rooms (classrooms) and the upstairs had 2. I was 9. She had one large room a studio. Another was a kitchen/bedroom/living room. One room was my fathers bedroom and living room. One room was just a mess. Haha.
I remember the boys and girls seperate bathrooms but only one worked.
I was always intrigued by a metal sliding board thing that came from the second floor down to the backyard. I’m guessing a fire escape of some sort.”
Tracey Lee Eckrode said on Facebook, “My dad went to school there. Come to think of it I think my mom went there as well. I know my dad did. My aunt Catherine Petritsch, currently 90 years old, also went there.
It taught up to 8th grade. It was a 4-room school house, with 1/2 grade in one room, 3/4 in another, 5/6 in another, and 7/8 in another. It is really awesome inside.
After the school closed, a woman bought it and had a sewing / luggage business in it. I worked after school cutting material and helping her. Her name was Susan Bush… an interesting lady. I loved working for her. I was in 7th grade. I used to get off the bus at 3 PM and walk right to the school house and work til 6 PM everyday for $2.00 / hour. Doesn’t sound like a lot, but 30 bucks a week went far. It taught me values.
There was an awesome fire escape from the second floor.
My uncle has books about the schoolhouse. It is a awesome place lots of character. I loved being inside it still has the chalkboards.
The people who own itknow use it for a vacation place.”
Further information online about Susan Bush describes her as “Sugarbush Clams, The Thread Fairy.” Click HERE to view a 1994 article in the Morning Call about Susan Bush, titled “Designer’s Success Has Her Happy As A Clam.” Click HERE to view a related article about Susan Bush on EngagingNews.us.

Pictured is a low resolution 1947 photo of students posing for a photo at the front side of the school. Image via Google Search.
Pictured is a low resolution 1947 photo of students posing for a photo at the front side of the school. Image via Google Search.

Below photos courtesy of Mandy Smith:

Image from Mandy Smith /
Image from Mandy Smith / Pictured are the late Randall Smith with children Mandy and Aaron Smith. Photo was taken around 1991.
Image from Mandy Smith /
Image from Mandy Smith / Pictured is the late Randall Smith on the left side stairwell of the school. Dated around 1991.

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