Ex-pupils flock to school’s 150th birthday

2008-08-10 00:00

SCORES of New Hanover Preparatory School’s former pupils shared their fond memories about the school during its 150th anniversary celebrations on Saturday.

Men who attended the school in the late 1920s and early 1930s were eager to share their stories. All seemed to have at least one thing in common, —their mischievous acts as young boys at the school.

Duro Thole, who was a pupil from 1930 to 1931 and still has his grade 1 report card, said there were only two classrooms at the school in his days.

He said that coming back for the school’s 150th anniversary brought back childhood memories and the games they used to play, such as walking the plank and kicking tins.

The school was established in 1858 by farmers H. Siecksmeyer, F. Aulfes and G. Bosse, who were also members of the Hermannsburg congregation.

For nine years a building on Aulfes’s farm was used as both the church and school. In 1867 the first two classrooms were built. There were no winter vacations in the early years of the school as the children were expected to help with farming in summer.

Attendance was often poor because children had to help on the farms.

In 1875, compulsory education was introduced and the congregation entered into an agreement with a pastor to ensure that pupils were given sufficient time by their parents to further their education and parents were fined if the agreement was broken.

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