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Granger School recognized at Centennial Celebration

By Kelsie Hoitomt

BOYCEVILLE – Shortly after the Civil War in the late 1860s, Captain J.W. Granger came to the area known today as Boyceville.

Making the trek to the area with him was a young black man who called himself Amos Granger, after the Captain who he admired and soon lived with.

Over time, Amos married and had a family, which became the first black family in not only Boyceville but Dunn County itself.

It was because of Amos, that the Granger school was opened and thus dedicated to him and his family.

It was around 1874 when Amos met and married Rosetta Basette. She was a young woman originally from Richmond, Virginia, but was living around the Eau Claire area at that time.

Together, Amos and Rosetta had four children; Alma was born in 1875, Vinnie May was born in 1877, Gordon (their only son) was born in 1883 and then Prudence was their last and her birth date is unknown.

The Grangers did have another child whom they named Ethel.

In 1891, Amos fell ill and passed away. He was laid to rest at the old Stanton Cemetery next to his daughter Prudence who died early in her childhood.

After his passing, Rosetta moved the family back to the Eau Claire area for three years before they moved to Minneapolis.

Rosetta lived in Minnesota for 22 years before she died in 1916. She was buried in Crystal Lake, Minnesota.

Life was very short lived in those times and Rosetta witnessed several losses in her time. In 1898, Alma died and was the second child Rosetta lost; she was buried in Eau Claire.

In 1930, Vinnie passed away and she was also buried at Crystal Lake. Ethel, their youngest died in 1943 and was also buried at Crystal Lake.

This left Gordon as the only Granger left in the family. He married Jerusha Brown in 1920 and after her passing, Gordon remarried in 1953 in Warren, Minnesota, which is where he was last known to be living as of a 1959 article.

That article written by Bill Clark and published in the Press Reporter, stated that at that time Gordon was 76 years old.

In his visit with Clark, Gordon learned for the first time that the schoolhouse had been named after his family and there was definite pride and surprise that appeared from it.

The Granger school was log and built on County Road K. At one point a new schoolhouse was built across the road from its original place. The old bell currently sits outside of Tiffany Creek Elementary.