Allamakee co. IAGenWeb Project - School Records
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School Index

Miscellaneous Lansing School Items
Sports teams - Teachers - other items
(displayed on page chronologically)

1880 October - Lansing school tid-bits

*The teachers in the Lansing public schools were paid off in gold last week.

*New billiard tables are being added to nearly all of the Lansing schools.
They don't appear to be afraid of prohibition in that place……

source: Reprinted from the Lansing Journal by the Elkader Register, Thursday morning, October 21, 1880, Elkader, Iowa; pg 4
contributed by Cindy (Maust) Smith

1884 - John R. McKim, teacher

We are in receipt of a handsome programme of the exercises attending the commencement of the high school at Lansing, Iowa, taught by Mr. J.R. McKim. The Mirror published at Lansing gives an excellant account of the exercises, and shows Mr. McKim to have had success in conducting the schools. He has been urged to take charge of the schools another year but has declined having decided to enter some other occupation. He will teach in the normal institute of Allamakee county, and return home about August 15th. He is a man of excellent education and ability, and is sure to have a future of which his friends in Crawford county will be proud.
~Lansing Mirror re-published in the Denison Review (Denison, Crawford co. IA), June 27, 1884
The following article was written in 1884 about Mr. John R. McKim and his participation in the "The Normal" teachers education course of study and instruction at Denison, Iowa.

Mr. John R. McKim sustained his high reputation as a teacher. Some of his lectures on civil government were excellent. His talks on chemistry, botany, and physics, were interesting and cannot fail to encourage the teachers to study further these sciences themselves. The last hour debates and discussions upon educational topics conducted by him formed one of the brightest features in the institute.
~The Denison Review, Friday, September 19, 1884; pg 1

~contributed by Cindy (Maust) Smith

John McKim was married to Jennie Grant in Lasing, 1885.
Obituary 1 * Obituary 2

1887 - Prof. Jones, superintendent

Prof. Jones, of Epworth, formerly principal of Epworth Seminary, and at present editor of the 'Iowa Normal Monthly', has accepted a position as superintendent of the public schools at Lansing. The Lansing Journal says:

"The school board, in special session last Wednesday evening, selected as school superintendent for the ensuing year, Prof. Jones, of Dubuque. The gentleman was here recently and visited the schools, and so favorably impressed the board, that he was unanimously elected. He, too, was much pleased with our beautiful city and its people with whom he came in contact. Mr. Jones is editor of the 'Iowa Normal Monthly', published at Dubuque, and has not been teaching the past year."

The TIMES earnestly congratulates the people of Lansing on their excellant choice. Indeed, they might have searched the State over without finding a better man to place at the head of their schools. Prof. Jones is one of the ablest young men in Iowa. His character is as pure as the sunlight - his ideas progressive and modern - his industry and zeal are prominent characteristics, and as an orator of power and fluency he has few equals. In fact, Prof. Jones, yet a young man, possesses many of the qualities that make men great. His success as principal of Epworth Seminary was surprising to all who had not gauged the young professor by proper measure. Failing health compelled him to cease his labors just as he was to reach a higher plane of success. A year of relaxation from the confinement of school work has given him renewed health, and he will enter upon his work at Lansing with better health and deep enthusiasm. There are great achievements in store for him in whatever he undertakes.
~Lansing Journal, reprinted by the Dubuque Times on June 3, 1887

Note: Prof. Jones apparently removed to Marshalltown: "County Superintendent Jones and family have returned from a visit with relatives in Ohio and Illinois. They report excessive rains in Ohio and great drouth in central Illinois. John Hilliard, who is superintendent of schools at Lansing has been looking after the superintendent office during Mr. Jone's absence." ~Times Republic, August 30, 1909, Marshalltown, Iowa

~contributed by Cindy (Maust) Smith

1891 July - Knoepfler of Lansing nominated for State Superintendent

The nomination of Prof. J.B. Knoepfler, of Lansing, for Superintendent of Public Instruction, meets the approval of all Clayton county teachers, most of whom have met Mr. Knoepfler and have been under his instruction during the normal institute of 1890.

source: Clayton County Register, Thursday morning, July 2, 1891, Elkader, IA; pg 4
contributed by Cindy (Maust) Smith

Added by S. Ferrall:
John B. Knoepfler was a superintendent of the Lansing schools, then elected state superintendent of public instruction; and afterwards on the faculty of the State Teachers’ College at Cedar Falls. (source: Past & Present of Allamakee County, 1913; Chapter 21, Lansing Schools)

See also:
Biography & photo


The Lansing schools close today, with commencement exercises this evening. There are thirteen graduates. We are indebted to somebody, presumably Prof. Smith, for a program.
~Postville Weekly Review, June 10, 1893, Postville, IA, pg 3
~contributed by Cindy Maust Smith


In order to enable those intending to attend the coming Teachers Institute, to be held in Lansing in August, to secure boarding places in advance, the committee on accommodations has prepared a list of the families who have signified their willingness to take boarders during that time, and copies of such list can be had by addressing Herman Boeckh or Herman Haas, Lansing.
~The Graphic, June 13, 1895, Postville, IA, pg 3
~contributed by Cindy Maust Smith


LANSING - The School Board have supplied extension ladders and the boys of the Lansing High School now have a fire team of their own. By the way, the scholars of the City Schools have become so proficient at fire drills that in case of an alarm the building can be emptied in 26 seconds.
~Allamakee Journal reprinted by the Clayton County Journal, April 27, 1906, Guttenberg, Iowa, pg 1
~contributed by Cindy Maust Smith

Mary Elizabeth Monk, Lansing teacher

Many Years A Teacher
Former State Superintendent J.B. Knoepfler, of the chair of German in the state normal school at Cedar Falls, has written to the office of the present state superintendent, giving the teaching record of Miss Mary Monk, of Lansing. She has taught for 36 consecutive years in the primary grade of the schools at Lansing. This it is believed is the record of long service in the same position among the teachers of the state. It was so unusual that Prof. Knoepfler thought it should be made of record at the capital.

source: Twice A Week Plain Dealer, November 28, 1902, Cresco, Iowa
contributed by Cindy (Maust) Smith


Resignation of Miss Mary Monk
After nearly forty years of continuous service as teacher in the Lansing schools Miss Mary Monk recently tendered her resignation. In point of service Miss Monk is probably the oldest teacher in the northeastern part of the state.

source: Decorah Public Opinion, June 3, 1908, Decorah, Iowa, Page 5
contributed by Cindy (Maust) Smith


No one, perhaps, ever connected with the Lansing public schools, exercised a greater or more beneficial influence upon the community than Miss Mary Monk, who taught here for more than forty years. Upon her death, which occurred April 23, 1913, in her sixty-sixth years, the local press voiced the universal respect and almost veneration in which she was held; and from their notices it is learned that she came to Allamakee county in 1865, and after teaching a few terms in the country schools she was elected a teacher in the Lansing public schools in 1866 and taught in that school, with the exception of one year, until 1908, during all of this time having charge of the grammar department. There are few families in Lansing today who have resided here during any considerable part of that period who have not had some representative in her classes, and all of these feel a sense of personal loss today. In a number of cases two generations of the same family have been her pupils, and for many years it was thought, and rightly so, that anyone who completed the course in the public school without having had a year or two of her instruction had missed an important part of his common school education.

How great an influence her painstaking, conscientious and scholarly work during that formative period of a young student’s life has had, can never be fully estimated. We do know that many a man and woman who has achieved success in the world does give Miss Monk the highest possible credit and does say that much of whatever success he has won is due to the high ideals of right living and right thinking which, of far more importance than the mere lessons from the books she taught so well, it was ever her aim and purpose to instill. How well she succeeded in this is amply demonstrated by the high, almost reverential, regard in which she has ever been held by all who had at any time been her scholars; and by all of them, as well as by the entire community, her death is mourned as a distinct personal loss.

source: Past & Present of Allamakee County; Ellery M. Hancock, 1913, Chapter 21

Mary E. Monk Obituary

Lansing High School Band ca 1926-1930

Lansing High School Band, undated photo, ca1926-1930

The photo was taken by Monroe Studios, Decorah, Iowa. My Great Grandmother, Virginia (Cooper) Lenz is the second girl from the right in the top row.

My great-grandmother and her Mother, Carrie Reed Cooper moved into Lansing from their country home so that my great-grandmother could attend High School. They lived in town from 1926 until Virgina graduated in 1930.

~contributed by Aubrie Lynn Lee from her personal photo collection


Below is a close-up of band members on the left:

Below is a close-up of band members on the right:

1930 - Lansing High School Basketball Team - 1930

Lansing High School Basketball Team, 1930.

The last student on the right of the first row is my great-grandfather, Curtis Lenz. The rest of the team as well as the coach were not identified on the photo.

~contributed by Aubrie Lynn Lee from her personal photo collection

1941 - Lansing High School Cardinals Baseball Team - 1941

This Lansing High School Cardinal baseball team of 1941 made it all the way to District finals before going down to defeat.

STANDING L-R: Clifford Ristow, Coach Edwin Albertson, Bert Severson, Leo Sullivan, Elmer Henderson, Gus Hastings, John Wilde, and Leland "Beans" Ritchie

SEATED L-R: Victor Swiggum, Bud Roeder, Raymond Wetterlin, Glenn Feuerhelm, and Team Captain, Bob Sweeney

~Allamakee Journal, Lansing, Iowa, May 22, 1991
~contributed by Errin Wilker

1973 - Kee High Hawks Baseball Team - 1973
Class A State Champs

Kee High Baseball Team - 1973

Front row, sitting: Manager David Rethwisch, Scorekeeper Lee Ann Wilde Bulman and Manager Dennis Mulholland
Kneeling: Steve Darling, Jay Darling, Kevin Hogan, Jim Brennan, Dan Bulman, Robert Renk and John Jangula
Standing: Doug Bulman, Rich Renk, Mark Rethwisch, Craig Wiemerslage, Barry Fruechte, Kevin Keenan, Dave Darling, Steve Fink, Mike Verdon and Coach Gene Schultz

~Allamakee Journal, Lansing, IA, hand-dated 1981, the photo dates to 1973
~contributed by Errin Wilker


Home For Kee High—Four members of Kee High's State Class A champions pose on home field with part of Mt. Hosmer looming in the background. From left: Shortstop Mark Rethwisch, catcher Dave Darling, second baseman Doug Bulman, and pitcher Steve Fink. The squad was made up of players from Lansing, St. George and New Albin, and went through a 47-game schedule without losing

Lansing Fans 'Welcome' Register
By Leighton Housh, Sports Editor

LANSING, IA—This little city in Northeast Iowa is unique. Where else in Iowa can you find a town that includes a mountain within the city limits—complete with a panoramic view of the Mississippi River? It's called Mt. Hosmer. And can you name a place in this state which in the year 1973 approved a school bond issue by no less than 93 percent? And can you recall an Iowan who coached a team to state high school baseball championship without receiving a dime for so doing? And finally, that team made a proper job of it.

Iowa High School Athletic Association records don't show that any team has approached the record of 47 victories and no losses posted by the new Kee High Hawks, who recently climaxed an unbeaten spring and summer by winning the Class A title in the state meet at Carroll. Little wonder that most stores here are festooned with boastful signs while the back of the small stands at the ball park in the flat bears the proud wording "Home of the Kee Hawks". That park is no Houston Astrodome, but somehow it provides a setting in which baseball was really meant to be played.

Main Street in Lansing runs downhilll and if brakes on your car go bad you could end up in the Mississippi. In no time at all the signal came through loud and clear: There would be little mourning in Lansing if something like that happened to me. Brother-in-law host Parker Hughes, a Des Moines medicine man, likes to get away from it all on weekends in his cottage here. He personally saw to it that I didn't share his peace and quiet. I met the people at Kehrs Hardware. They were the first to give me fits. Next came the baker, Harold Wellendorf, and his sons, James and Willie—one of whom declared it a pity that AA champion Thomas Jefferson of Council Bluffs couldn't become Kee Hawk victim No. 48. Even banker Tom Kerndt wasn't happy.

The town, it seems, was convinced that it had been shorted by The Register on coverage—with which paper the good doctor was cunningly careful to identify me. Something had to be done, and it was.

Hawks coach, Gene Schultz

Coach Gene Schultz, who as far as anyone could recall brought the town its first state title in any sport, was contacted. You know what? Shultz, 27, was getting ready to open the fall baseball season a week from Tuesday—the day after school starts in the newly-purchased five-year-old former St. George High building.

A modest man who pitched and played shortstop for Winona State before coming here to coach baseball and basketball four years ago, Schultz expects to play 13 fall games. If Kee High keeps it up, the string could continue to 60. Gene figured the new school will have an enrollment of about 265 as compared to 127 last year because of the fact the St. George parochial school, with an even larger student body, will be combined with the public high school.

Banker Kerndt had confirmed that the $350,000 bond money was to be paid over to the Catholic owners for the St. George building last Wednesday. The new school will open for business Aug.27. But the ball players were first to merge—playing their first game June 1 after Schultz's team had posted a 28-0 spring record. "We didn't practice all summer," he said. "We simply played games Friday nights. We hadn't even planned to play summer ball, but because we had such a decent team we went ahead." "In none of the summer games did we ever have the entire team on hand—because of people working nights, on the farm, or on vacation. One game only 11 showed up. But when we got to district play we did have everyone."

Schultz declared that the amalgamation helped the state championship team more than a little. "You know last spring perhaps our toughest game was with St. George for the upper Mississippi conference championship," he said. "We won, 2-1, after two extra innings. Kevin Kenan, who became our No. 2 pitcher, had a no-hitter going against us for six innings. Our leadoff man and fourth hitter before the schools were combined were decent hitters," he said, "but they ended up batting eighth and ninth on the new team."

The two from St. George who broke into the starting lineup were Kenan, at first base, and Jay Darling, third. The coach is high on a stocky lefthander, Steve Fink, who had an unbelievable record of 21-0 for the year. His uncle, Shooky Fink, is Mr. Baseball in this area, and Schultz is the first to point that out. Shooky lives in New Albin, 11 miles north. "They have Little League and Babe Ruth and the boys from New Albin were the mainstays of our team," said Schultz. "By the time they reach high school they know the basics." Steve Fink is to get a look a Minneapolis Twins tryout camp, but expects to enroll at Luther College.

If Kee High is to keep going it will have to do so without Fink and five other regulars, including lead hitter (.459) Dave Darling, catcher; Doug Bulman, second base; Mark Rethwisch, shortstop; and outfielders, Mike Vernon and Rich Renk.

But, baseball aside, I was the one who caught the walleye—not my medical relative.

~Des Moines Register, August 1973
~contributed by Errin Wilker

1977 - Kee High State Baseball Champions - 1977

Bottom row L-R: Leroy Schobert, John Bulman, Tim Heiderscheit, Tom Stahl, Ted Benson, Dave Renk, Danny Murphy, Steve Scholtes, and Mark Teff
Second row L-R: Tom Imhoff, Clark Meyer, Pete Love, Jerry Wilde, Terry Heiderscheit, Todd Gramlich, Jerry Imhoff, Jerry Brennan, and Steve Wild
Standing L-R: Donna Dresselhaus, Don Whalen, David Steele, Galen Breeser, Jeff Schoh, Gary Thorson, Jeff Darling, Rick Fink, Mark Fink, Kris Kious, Jeff Fink, Frank Wise, Jeff Christiansen, Robin Christiansen, and Coach Gene Schultz

~undated Allamakee Journal clipping
~contributed by Errin Wilker

1978/1979 Kee High Varsity Basketball Team

Kee High, 1978-79 basketball team

Front: Team manager Brent Noe, Mark Fink, Clark Meyer, Ray Conway, Tom Imhoff, Greg Troendle
Back: Robert Zeimet, Terry Meyer, Gary Thorson, Darryl Becker, Andy Leppert, Jeff Darling, Duane Walleser, Coach Gene Schultz

Darryl's comments: The team posted an 18-3 record that season highlighted by a rare win over Waukon and a 10-0 record in the Upper Mississippi Conference. Other schools in the conference then were Cresco Notre Dame, Garnavillo, Guttenberg, Mar-Mac, and North Winneshiek. The season ended in the sectional final against M-F-L of Monona.

~photo credit: Allamakee Journal, Lansing, IA
~contributed by Darryl Becker

Teacher of the Week Sara Smerud - 1979

Sara Smerud (L) Sara Smerud (R) Sylvia Hegy

Sara Smerud is this week’s featured teacher, who lives in New Albin with her mother, foster son, cat, and two dogs. She likes anything to do with the outdoors. While active at school she takes part in the State Board of Adult Education, Sub-Area Health Systems Agency, and Region One Council for the Handicapped, of which she is president at this time. Miss Smerud is retiring at the end of the present school year, but she still hopes to continue an interest in education. She has been at Kee High for 13 years and enjoyed teaching and counseling very much. This summer she is traveling to Wyoming, where she has relatives.
~Allamakee Journal, Lansing, IA, hand-dated 1979 (photo, above left, accompanied this article)


At the Kee High Awards Night on Tuesday, April 24, 1979, Sylvia Hegy, president of the Eastern Allamakee Education Association, presented a certificate of recognition as a "Friend of Education" for her outstanding contributions to education to Sara K. Smerud. During her thirteen years as a social worker at the EACS, Sara has been instrumental in establishing an outdoor nature study laboratory in New Albin; securing monies for various educational projects; instruction at the sixth grade campout and many youth organizations; and shared her vast knowledge in many areas with young and old. She has been coordinator for adult education in this area, working through Area One Vocational-Technical School, and she is presently serving on the State Board of Adult Education. The Sub-area Health Systems Agency, the Allamakee County Historical Society and the Region One Council for the Handicapped have had Sara working with them in one capacity or another. She is a member of the National Education Association, the Iowa State Education Association and the Eastern Allamakee Education Association. Sara is also active in the New Albin Community Club. With all this, she still finds time to garden, camp out, fish, collect rocks and study the environment, remodel her home, and travel. Her family, mother and foster son, Billy Brown, also receive her loving care. This area, and especially this school district, has indeed been fortunate to have had a "Friend of Education" in the person of Sara Smerud. We are extremely proud of her and hope she will continue to share her expertise in educational activities in the future.
~Allamakee Journal, Lansing, IA, May 1979 (photo, above right, accompanied this article)

~the articles & photos were contributed by Errin Wilker.
~Sara K. Smerud died in 2006. Obituary


Teacher of the Week – Merle Welper - 1980

Merle Welper

Teacher of the Week, Feb. 1980 – Mr. Merle Welper
By Mary Stussy

“Little Boy,” is the nickname given to this week’s teacher of the week, Mr. Merle Welper. He resides in New Albin with his wife Sheryl, and four children, Marty, Lisa, Linda, and Lana. He attended La Crosse State, where he majored in mathematics. To obtain his masters degree he went to Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, Illinois.

With a teaching record of sixteen years you might think that he was tired of kids, but when he asked what he liked about teaching, his comment was, “Kids!” He also commented that the kids have a more positive attitude toward formal education than they used to. His most memorable moment was driving the band and choir kids last year to Chanhassen in a snow storm with a school bus. Mr. Welper has many hobbies. As an outdoorsman he enjoys hunting and fishing. Other things he enjoys are bowling and driving a school bus. When he was asked what changes he’d like to see in the future he replied, “Shorter days with more prep periods.”

~Allamakee Journal, Lansing, February 1980
~contributed by Errin Wilker


Teacher of the Week – Mrs. Margaret Bishop - 1980

Margaret Bishop, 1980

Mrs. Margaret Bishop can be found in the Kee High library sitting on her new desk chair, as she is the librarian - audio-visual specialist for the school. Mrs. Bishop lives 2 miles from Lansing with her husband George and her pet, Smokie.

To further her education, Mrs. Bishop first attended Kansas Wesleyan University, where she received her BA degree in English literature and journalism. From the University of Iowa she earned her MA degree in library science education. She has also taken additional classes from the University of Northern Iowa.

This teacher, who was born November 22, 1922, says that her most memorable moment was when George came home from World War II in one piece.

In her spare time, Mrs. Bishop likes to keep busy with lapidary, reading and fishing on the Mississippi (during the summer.) Some of her favorites are the color blue, steak, and the TV program, “The White Shadow.” Some of her final remarks are as follows: “Education of the student in the school is our prime charge, for he is tomorrow’s by-product, and will be responsible for our lives in future years. I strongly feel it highly important that education for the student’s future not be all for sports or all for the education, but it have a healthy balance between both.”

~Allamakee Journal, Lansing, hand-dated 1980
~contributed by Errin Wilker


1982 - Kee High School Sports - 1982

Kee High varsity baseball team, 1982
Varsity baseball team

Kee High’s successful summer baseball season came to an end on Tuesday evening, July 20, at Elkader, when North Tama defeated them 10-9 in the first round of sub-state tournament. The game was a see-saw affair as the lead changed hands several times. Ironically, the Hawks took a 9-7 lead into the final inning and saw their dream of playing in a third straight state tournament shattered when pitcher Pat Heiderscheit walked in the tying and winning runs. Hawks ended their season with a 29-8 record.

In back row are assistant coach Jack Grampovnik, batgirl Susie Costello, Mark Darling, Scott Schoh, John Burroughs, Duane Yeoman, John Costello, Ron Hanson, Mike Weber, Justin Burke, Mike Manning, Daryl Vonderohe, Pat Hogan and coach Gene Schultz.

In front are Todd Hogan, Jeff Peters, Jon O’Malley, Mike Brennan, Kerry Hogan, Chris Fink, Andy Sires, Dave Whalen, Pat Heiderscheit and Tony Hogan.

~Allamakee Journal, Lansing, IA, July 28, 1982
~contributed by Errin Wilker

Junior varsity basketball team, 1982
Junior varsity basketball team

Back: Mike Schweitzer, Matt Mooney, Mike Manning, Ron Hanson, Randy Gaunitz, Dennis Gruber and coach Bob Wellendorf
Front: Chris Fink, Brian Simmonds, Kerry Hogan, Mike Brennan, Ron Cooper, Jon O'Malley and Andy Sires

~Allamakee Journal, Lansing, IA, hand-dated 1982
~contributed by Errin Wilker


1983 - Kee High School Basketball - 1983

Kee High Varsity basketball team, 1983
Varsity basketball team

Back: Coach Gene Schultz, Pat Heiderscheit, John Costello, Randy Gaunitz, Ron Hanson, Rick Gaunitz and Mike Manning
Front: Chris Fink, Randy Garin, Jayme Welsh, Dave Whalen, Jeff Peters and Dennis Gruber

Kee High Junior Varsity basketball team, 1983
Junior varsity basketball team

Back: John Moore, Joel Sires Jr., Mark Manning, Bill Brown, Ken Peters, Andy Sires, Ron Cooper and Coach Bob Wellendorf
Front: David Welsh, Jeff Steiber, Tim Meyer, Jon O'Malley, Kerry Hogan, Paul Whalen and Mike Brennan

~Allamakee Journal, Lansing, IA, hand-dated 1983
~contributed by Errin Wilker


1984 - Kindergarten Roundup - 1984

Kindergarten roundup for children who will reach the age of five on or before September 15, 1984 in the Eastern Allamakee Community School District is scheduled for Tuesday, March 13, at Lansing Elementary-Middle School.

For Lansing area parents, those whose last name begins between A-J should report at 8:30 a.m. gymnasium area in the Middle School. Last name between K-P are asked to report at 9:30, and the remainder Q-Z at 10:30.

School census records indicate parents of James Baures, Steve Connelly, Gary Conway, Matthew Brown, Jason Flynn, Luke Feuerhelm, Shane Halverson, Jade Johnson, Chiara Kruse, Jill Lenz, Dustin Lenz, Lavrinda Manning, Christopher Melde, Ben Mettille, Janell Mohn, Mike Peters, Michael Peterson, Megan Protsman, Amy Rea, Kristi Rea, Sara Scholtes, Terry Seitz, Daric Steiber, Leah Wagner, Jason Weber, Benjamin Wilson, Krista Winters, and Eric Wyninger should report.

Parents will be mailed a family record sheet and a health information sheet, both of which are to be filled out and brought to the roundup. A certificate of birth or other proof of age is needed.

~Allamakee Journal, Lansing, IA, Mar. 1984
~contributed by Errin Wilker


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