............Tuttle Public School History

Tuttle Public School education began in October of 1913 with classes being held in a house (Adam Heimas house), coinciding with the formation of the Tuttle School District. The first Tuttle School building, which housed only grade school at that time, was built in 1914. A woman by the name of Miss Emma Voves had the privilege of being the first teacher and principal at Tuttle School. Miss Voves taught the lower grades, and a woman named Miss Irene Doughty taught the upper grades.

Tuttle High School began in the fall semester of 1918, started by a woman named Lydia Hinman. Miss Hinman had been the Kidder County Superintendent and saw a need for a high school in Tuttle. Miss Hinman served Tuttle High School from 1918 to 1921, when she returned to Steele to resume the duties of County Superintendent. Miss Hinman’s dedication to her students was commendable, as she took with her five Tuttle students so they could finish their high school education. In fact, she financially assisted in the education of 21 boys and girls from high school to college. With the departure of Lydia Hinman, C. A. Kelly assumed the duties of High School Superintendent. In the fall of 1922, the brick structure was completed and became the first ‘official’ high school building in Tuttle. The building has and still does occupy perhaps the most prominent position in town. Located on the top of a gently rising slope, it is the first sight that meets the eye as you enter main street from the highway.

In the fall of 1925, A.W. Peterson assumed the duties of Superintendent of Schools. He held this position until 1961, and just over half of Tuttle’s graduates (556) students graduated under his teaching. “Prof” as he became know by everyone in the community was always a great influence in the lives of the students and graduates of Tuttle High School. Besides being an excellent teacher and an efficient administrator he set a high example, both in and out of school, for all to follow. The first Tuttle High School graduating class was in 1920 with one graduating senior. Between the years of 1920-1925 the graduates merely received their diplomas, with no commencement exercises being held. The first Commencement exercises were held for the class of 1926 with seven graduating seniors. THS went from one graduating senior in 1920 to its largest class of 29 in the year 1938.

In 1958 a special election was held for approval by the voters of the Tuttle School District to build a new high school and gymnasium. The voters approved a bond issue, and construction work began in the spring of 1959. Shortly before Christmas of that same year the new High School building was ready for occupancy. Included in the building were three general purpose classrooms, a fully equipped Industrial Arts room, an excellent science room, storage and custodial facilities and administrative facilities. The gymnasium, at the time of its completion, was state-of-the-art and one of the most modern gymnasiums in the area. It was used through the years not only for school events, but proved to be a gathering place for the entire community.

In 1959 and 1960 the PTA worked hand-in-hand with the school board in planning and purchasing equipment for the Hot Lunch Program. This program provided warm meals for many students and proved to be a highly successful program.

While relatively small, enrollment for the 1960-61 school year in the Tuttle Public School was a total of 245, Tuttle High School offered many students opportunities in their music program. In the 1960-61 school year the THS band consisted of 36 members, and their chorus had 40 members.

THS sport’s programs provided opportunities for both girl’s and boy’s track and field, as well as the Tuttle Trojan basketball team. Each, boosting through the years, of conference titles and district and regional championships!

As the school became to small to support its own teams, the opportunity for sports participation continued as Tuttle and Wing, in 1988, combined their sports programs; the basketball team then being known as the Wing-Tuttle Royal Trojans. In 1989 the sports co-op between Wing and Tuttle became known as the Wildcats. As school enrollment continued to decline, in 1995, Tuttle and Pettibone combined their schools. Grades 7 through 12 attended school in Tuttle and grades K through 6 attended in Pettibone. As Robinson had closed their high school, many of their students attended high school at Tuttle-Pettibone High. This proved to produce some of the best academic and sports teams in North Dakota, with the boy’s basketball team finishing fifth in the State Class B Tournament in 2001.

With enrollment declining with each passing year, it became evident the school could not continue to exist, and in the year 2007 the decision was made to close the doors concluding with the final graduation on May 19, 2007.

Gone but not Forgotten!
Tuttle ALL School Reunion, Tuttle, ND, June 21, 2008