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Catalog Number 2015.012.001
Object Name Recording
Scope & Content Oral history interview of Pearl Scharringhausen.

Interviewed by Philip Barry, Chairman of the Elk Grove Historical Society, March 15, 1988. Interview conducted at the home of Pearl Scharringhausen at 121 South Dunton St., Arlington Heights, IL. Interview length 24 m 24 sec. Collection includes audio recording and transcript.
Collection Elk Grove Historical Museum
Notes Pearl Scharringhausen

00:00:00 March 15, 1988, 10:00 AM. Interviewer is Phil Barry at the house of Pearl. Pearl was a teacher at Box Elder School in Elk Grove, 1924-1926. Introduction follows.

00:01:18Why Pearl came from Montana to teach in Elk Grove. Actually came to help her sister in her beauty parlor in Chicago but didn't like that so she sought a teaching position in the county. Elk Grove was the only school left in the area so that's how she came to Elk Grove. Taught all 8 grades with 45 children enrolled. Taught from 9:00 to 4:00. Paid $135 per month for 9 months. Only restriction was the requirement to live in the school district. She boarded with Rubin Scharringhausen on east side of State Road, north of Landmeier. Had students from 3 Scharringhausen families, Pingel, Piepelow, Sieman, Precht and names many other families.

00:08:10Description of school. Pretty shabby when she taught there. Some of the windows were broken and the glass was not replaced all winter. One big room maybe about 24 by 48. Only one entry way. Cloak room on each side, one for boys and one for girls and each had a chemical toilet. Big coal-burning furnace sat in the corner. At that time they had to go over to George Scharringhausen's bring water back to the school. Blackboards. No big school bell, just a hand bell that she rang. Flagpole. Not much for playground equipment.

00:11:16Student dress code. All came clean and dressed up but sometimes some strange sights. Boys wore overalls and girls dresses.

00:12:45Description of area around the school. School sat on about a half an acre. Surrounded by farmland. George Scharringhausen lived on west side of State Rd. That was about a ¼ mile south of Landmeier. Just north of Landmeier on east side was Albert Scharrringhausen. North of him was Rubin Scharringhausen. Pingel on the west side. Then a couple of bachelors and the village hall and on the corner at Higgins was Steinke's tavern. Shayne's Ballroom was west on Higgins Rd. about a ¼ mile. They had picnic groves and a dance hall. It was originally Schnell's. There were cabins there along the forest preserve road.

00:18:37Other remembrances. Teachers never stayed very long. She named several subsequent teachers. Most were young women who'd teach one or two years and then get married and quit teaching. Elk were brought from Montana in 1924 or 1925 to the forest preserve. During second year of teaching cattle were tested for TB and some lost their whole herd. There was a woman who was having an affair (her husband belonged to the KKK). She ended up having a fiery cross burning on her yard. It was in Elk Grove.

00:24:47End of interview.
Source Elk Grove Historical Museum