Remembering The Pafford School

Nell Morisette
NewsTribune Special Columnist

Hello, Tribune readers. It's another beautiful day in Benton County, and maybe spring has sprung. Oh, I know we will have more bad, cold weather.

Pafford School

In the January-March 1995 issue of the Benton County Genealogical Society Quarterly, Mr. Leon Brewer of Memphis had in the Queries that he would like to hear from anyone who could give him any information on the Pafford School in Benton County. To me, this was like throwing the bone to a dog and saying, "Go to it."

I began to call people, ask questions, etc. Someone gave me the name of Rev. Vernon Turner, who lives on Cedar Grove Road. Rev. Turner had bought some of the Pafford land and knew where the school used to stand.

We planned a day. I would come to his house, and he would show me the site and tell me all he could. I was made very welcome by Rev. and Mrs. Turner. He said Rev. Cecil Brewer had taught there. They called the Brewers for me and found Cecil in the hospital

I went to the Benton County Board of Education, then to the Courthouse to the Register of Deeds' office, and found Pafford School.

Some of the landowners in the old 8th District in the 1890s were Timothy Pafford and two of his sons, Andrew and W.E. Pafford. This was a rural community about three miles southeast of Big Sandy on Sulphur Creek Road called Lutherton.

Rev. W.T. Pafford organized a subscription school and taught the children in his home. In 1908 Rev. Pafford donated one acre of land, and a building was erected in this community for a school, and was known as the Pafford School. Rev. W.T. Pafford taught there for several years.

Date built: 1908-09
Heating: Ordinary wood stove
Rooms: One, floor area 25X40
Number of patent desks: Double 12
Ventilation: Board and glass windows
Source of water: Water was brought about a quarter mile in buckets; one dipper
Privys: Two, boys' and girls'
Number of books for the year: 40

After finding this information, I called Rev. Cecil Brewer back, or thought I did. Instead I got his brother and wife, Rev. Kenneth and Maxene Brewer, who lived in Mansfield, Tennessee. They had some pictures of the school made in 1948. I went to their home and borrowed the pictures and had some run off for me.

Cecil Brewer 1948

Cecil Brewer and his students

Thought For The Week:

Love cures people - both the ones who give it and the ones who receive it.