District History

History of Ada Schools in Liberty Township, Hardin County, Ohio Last Updated: 6/21/2018 2:56 PM
  • One Room School Houses 1841-1888 (Located around Liberty Township)
  • Union School District 1863
    • South School 1890 (School building on S. Johnson Street)
    • North School 1892 (School building on N. Main Street)
  • Ada Exempted Village Schools 1929 (School building on Grand Street)

  • Ada Exempted Village Schools 2008 (School building on W. North Street)

One-room school houses (1841-1888), located around Liberty Township

  • Dist. School #1 - McElroy School, later called Red School
  • Dist. School #2 - Rinehart School
  • Dist. School #3 - Woods School
  • Dist. School #4 - Stewart School, later called Hostler School
  • Dist. School #5 - Ada Town School, 1852
  • Dist. School #6 - Scott's Crossing School
  • Dist. School #7 - Mustard School
  • Dist. School #8 - Hoon School, later called Cemetery School, finally Woodlawn School
  • Dist. School #9 - Klingler School

The first schools in the township were subscription schools, that is, they were supported by contributions from their patrons. Schools in Liberty Township began after it's organization in 1837 and as the need and funds increased more schools were built. The first three school-houses, maybe others, were originally log cabins.

They were located in each 640 acre section, thus making the schools two miles apart. The schools were originally called by the names: District School 1- 9, but soon thereafter the names were changed by the trustees, often given the surname of the person that donated the land for the school. Some were named for the family that had the most pupils in the school.

The Owlsburg School in Hancock County, consolidated with the Ada School District in 1937 when it closed. It was located at the corner of St. Rt. 30 & St. Rt. 235 also known as Van's Corner.

Union School District, 1863

The village organized a school district in 1863 which became known as Ada's Union School district. There were two buildings in the Union school concept, one being south of the railroad containing four rooms called the South School, and the other being a new building north of the railroad containing twelve large rooms with an auditorium. This new building became known as the North School.

South School, 1890 (school building on S. Johnson St.)

The South School was built in 1890. (Some note, erected in the summer of 1894.)  Located on the corner of E. College Avenue and S. Johnson Street.

It was the change of education from the one-room schoolhouses to this four-room building which housed grades one through four. Eventually the North School was built and added another building into Ada's Union School District.

First and second grades were downstairs and third and fourth grade were upstairs. The school bell was rung in the morning, at noon, and after recess to summon the children to line-up outside to enter the building. Often times the old Victrola was cranked up and the students marched to the music to their respective classrooms.

The building was torn down in 1969 and the lot remains vacant.


North School, 1892 (school building on N. Main St.)

The North School was erected in 1892. (Some data shows the building built in 1905.)

Hardin Ada HS 1.jpg

This building was built with 12 rooms and boasted an extravagant $30,000 price tag. The building housed all twelve grades until the township centralized in 1929, students were sent to the new Ada School building on Grand Avenue after that time. North School then held grades 1-6 until 1953, when the elementary wing was added to the high school.

The North School was purchased by Ohio Northern University in 1953, and was used for engineering classes. After ONU built the Smull Engineering Building on campus in 1971, the North School was torn down to make way for the fire station. The present day fire station still stands at this site on N. Main Street.


Ada Exempted Village Schools, 1929 (school building on Grand Street)


Ada Exempted Village Schools, 2008 (school building on W. North Street)