Predating the establishment of an official town, the Buck Creek School was built in about 1878. This school is a one-story native limestone structure with a gable roof that still stands in this vanished community. Buck Creek School served the families of School District Number 43 for 75 years as a center of education, public meetings, and social events.
The Buck Creek School building measures approximately 25 feet wide and 40 feet long. The school’s interior space is comprised of a center entry foyer flanked by two coat rooms, that lead into the main classroom. Students of all ages attended. In 1883 a total of 55 students between the ages of five and 18 attended classes. In 1898 62 children aged five to 19 studied at the school; in 1931, 24 students between the ages of six and 20 attended the school, and in 1941, 43 students aged five to 19 studied at the school.
The length of the school year fluctuated between seven and nine months. Between 1873 and 1907 a teacher earned between $30 and $50 dollars a month. In 1952 the teacher’s salary was $225 per month.
Consolidation forced its closure in 1952. It was then sold to the Valley Ridge Homemakers Extension Unit in 1954 for a meeting hall. Today this historic school is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It is located at 15490 13th Street, Perry, Kansas, off US-24, two miles east of Williamstown.
More than 20 years after the school was established, a post office opened in Buckcreek on May 15, 1899. However, its life was short-lived. It closed on December 31, 1905. The community then received its mail from Williamstown by rural route.
Perhaps due to its brief period as a “town,” little other information could be found regarding the community.
Near the old townsite is the 823-acre Buck Creek Wildlife Area. This land is made up of native grass, oak-hickory hardwoods, row crops, and features one of the few remaining unaltered perennial streams in northeast Kansas. A wide variety of wildlife occurs in the area including, deer, turkey, squirrels, rabbits, and a host of other nongame wildlife. Waterfowl can occasionally occur in the area, either in the stream or on the harvested crop field. Some limited hunting is allowed through the special hunts program.
The wildlife area is approximately six miles northwest of Lawrence.
Blackmar, Frank W.; Kansas: A Cyclopedia of State History, Vol I; Standard Publishing Company, Chicago, IL 1912.
Cutler, William G; History of Kansas; A. T. Andreas, Chicago, IL, 1883.
National Register of Historic Places