Bledsoe School

The first school building in Bledsoe was erected through donated labor in the fall of 1925. Mrs. Corrine Lackey was the school's first teacher.

Among the first students were Dan Carter, J. C. Griffin, James Lackey, Cornelia Lackey, Jessie Bowers, Marcilee Bowers, and the King girls. In 1926 the superintendent, W. I. Wilkins, was paid $125.00 per month, and teachers were paid $100.00 a month.

On October 16, 1926, the Bledsoe Independent School District held a special session, asking that an election be ordered upon the question of issuing bonds for the purpose of building and equipping a public school of brick and tile materials. That election was held on November 8, 1926 and thirty-six votes were cast "For the issuance of bonds and the levying of tax in payment thereof." No votes were cast against the issuance of the bonds. The bonds were issued in the amount of $100,000. At the time of the bond issuance, the Bledsoe ISD School Board consisted of the following members: J. L. Westerman, George Tiger, R. C. Strickland, J. A. Kinnebrugh, and T. M. Neeley.

On January 24, 1927, a bid of $71,538 was accepted from Sampson Contruction Company, general contractor, another bid of $1,544 from the W. W. Electric Company of Lubbock and a bid of $9,750 from Roswell Heating and Plumbing.

By 1930 there were approximately one hundred students and four teachers: R. D. Fletcher, Mrs. R. D. Fletcher, Jessie Bowers and Ethal Travis.

In Nopvember 1941 students from the Earnest School District attended Bledsoe School for the remainder of the school year at a tutition rate of $2.50 per month per child.

A school lunch program was discussed and put in to operation in 1946. It was decided that until the school could get Federal funding, they would use the old Home Economics room, including the old oil stove. Mrs. B. M. Mann was hired as supervisor and was paid $4.25 a day. Mrs. Ocie Foster was hired as Mrs. Mann's assistant and paid $3.00 a day. The lunchroom program was a success. Mrs. Mann retired in 1949 and Mrs. Jewell Webb was hired to replace her.

In 1953 a gymnasium was built across the street from the school. During the 1960's and 70's enrollment stayed around 100 students but began to decline sharply.

The last graduating class of Bledsoe School was in 1989 was composed of one student, Danny Chavez.

In September 1989 Junior High and High School aged Bledsoe students were bused to Whiteface. Consolidation with Whiteface CISD became inevitable, though Whiteface allowed Bledsoe to maintain the elementary school program until the spring of 1998.

Bledsoe School Mascot: Antelope
Bledsoe School Colors: Maroon and White
Bledsoe School Song:

Out on the plains close to New Mexico,
there is a school that has much pep and go.
Our colors maroon and white we gayly fame,
Bledsoe High School is our name, oh is our name,
so if we win this game or if we lose,
Bledsoe High School we will always choose.
So let us cheer once more for BHS, BHS,
Bledsoe High School
Rah, Rah

Source: Texas' Last Frontier: A New History of Cochran County by Elvis E. Fleming and David J. Murrah, 2001; Cochran County Legacy, Cochran County Historical Commission, 1985; Bledsoe School brochure, The Association for the Preservation of Bledsoe Schools (undated).

Construction of the Bledsoe School
Photograph courtesy Texas' Last Frontier Historical Museum

R. C. Strickland and unknown boy with the first Bledsoe School Bus
Photograph courtesy Texas' Last Frontier Historical Museum

Bledsoe School Auditorium Stage c. 1928
Photograph courtesy Texas' Last Frontier Historical Museum