Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Papinville History " Drainage Ditch and School Stories"


 The Bates County Drainage Ditch is only in Bates County. It is 24 miles long and the first digging was in 1907 and completed in 1909. There were five working dredges and a lot of men from Papinville worked the dredges and some of the women cooked for the workers. The reason for the ditch was to help drain the bottom lands to help the farmers get better crops in the low lands. The ditch was eighty to one hundred feet wide and 12 feet deep. The farmers that lived in the ditch area were taxed $10.93 per acre. In 1911 there was a second digging to make the ditch 10 feet deeper. They increased the tax $4.98  to what they were already paying. Some of the farmers lost their farms over this tax. The first bridge was made of wooden\steel  and built like the  historical bridge in Papinville. It was removed from the forms on June 6,1995 due to a large drift pile wedged under the bridge. The high waters came up fast and lifted the bridge. It floated on top of the drift pile for four miles. This new bridge was completed in 1997. This bridge is arched up high to keep the drift from building up underneath. The ditch has not helped the farmers on bit. Since Truman Dam has been built the flooding is worse and they can keep the high water on as long as they want to protect Lake of the Ozarks. To walk the 5K Walk\Run continue to the blue gate or you can come back from the drainage ditch bridge heading back to Papinville.

The new bridge at Papinville had to be built first in order for the heavy equipment and trucks to get to the ditch bridge when it was being built. It is built about where the river boat landing was located.

 The first school was built in 1868 when people were moving back to Papinville. It was a two story school that was built to the south of the school house that was built in 1895. The room that was built on to the two story school was used for their lunch room, programs and the ladies would meet there to make bandage wraps during the first and second world war. The two story was torn down in the 1940’s and the one room school was used until 1952. Then all of district 7 went to Prairie City to school. In 1957 all the rural schools consolidated to Rich Hill. From 1952 to 1970’s the school was used for elections. In 1991 the Prairie Township deeded the school property to the Papinville Cemetery and Historical Association. When you get back to the school and museum you can take a tour and learn more history.

Since the association started we have built a shelter house, band stand, museum and a sidewalk of history. This event we are having June 8 is to help build a bigger museum and turn what is now the museum into a hall for more activities and the hall can be rented to families or organizations for events.

We hope you have enjoyed the historical walk\ run stories and come out to Papinville to see and learn more history. We will be serving grilled hamburgers and hot dogs, suzie Q’s, drinks and desserts. The walk\ run will begin at 8:30, corn hole at 10:30, wagon rides and adult \children’s games 11:00-2:00, lunch served 11:30 to 2:00, music from 12:00 -2:30 and a $400.00 basket drawing at 2:00. Something for everyone to enjoy. This is the last of the stories. Hope you have enjoyed them and bring your lawn chairs. Papinville is east of Rich Hill A Highway to N Highway go south on N to Papinville to the T road and turn right to museum. If you have any questions call 816 590 1029.