Rusk History 1934
In 1870 the Breithaupts were conducting the Rusk Male and Female Academy, Mrs. Breithaupt teaching music and embroidery. Among other teachers who served during the years were Reverend and Mrs. W. K. Marshall, Professor and Mrs. J. B. Mitchell, Mrs. Knox, Mrs. Locke and her daughter, Miss Mary Locke, and Doctor Bacon. Among its students were James Stephen Hogg and Thomas Mitchell Campbell, future governors, Julia and Fannie Hogg, Doctor Will Dumas, Doctor A. H. McCord, B. C. Coupland, Mrs. Mary Ann Reagan, Mrs. Jennie Gibson, and Mrs. S. R. Curtis, who vividly recalls her Friday afternoon dialogues with Jim Hogg.
Music was an important part of the curriculum. A few Rusk women still remember dancing the square dance, during the two-hour noon intermission, to music played on its rosewood piano, "with a back like a bookcase." During some years the sessions were very short and the entire time devoted to one subject. At the close of one of Doctor Bacon's grammar schools he offered fifty dollars to anyone who could give his students a sentence which they could not parse. The doctor saved his money.
In 1885 Rusk levied a special school tax and four years later the Rusk free school district purchased the Rusk Masonic Institute building and established a public school!' In 1912 it was made a four-year high school, attaining first class rank two years later. A. S. Moore is the 1934 superintendent. The faculty member with the longest service record is the beloved Miss Ruth Gibson. During almost a quarter of a century this member of one of the earliest pioneer families has helped to mold the lives of Rusk children.
In 1879 the Texas Observer was succeeded by the Rusk Observer, published by J. E. Shook. In 1882 the Cherokee Standard succeeded the Rusk Observer, being published in turn by W. E. Miller, J. E. Shook R. E. Hendry, Jernigan & Shook, F. R. Trimble, A. J. Owen and John B. Long. In January, 1888, the Cherokee Standard was consolidated with the Labor Enterprise, which had been published for a short time by W. F. Black of Box's Creek, and became known as the Standard-Enterprise. Reverend L V. Jolly was later associated with John B. Long as editor.
In 1889, J. A. Padon and a Mr. Kirkpatrick established the Cherokee Herald which was afterward sold to John B. Long, the consolidated papers becoming the Standard-Herald. This was sold to Reverend J. S. Burke and his son, R. A. Burke, who chanced its name to the Industrial Press. In 1906 the Burkes purchased the Weekly Journal, which had been published by William C. Cloyd since 1901, and continued to publish the consolidated papers as the Press-Journal. Among its later owners were F. B. and Charles R. Guinn and W. M. Ellis. In 1919, W. L. Martin established the Rusk Cherokeean which was consolidated with the Press-Journal in 1923 and sold to H O. and Mrs. Pearl Ward in 1925. Mrs. Ward is the present owner and editor.
Rusk has also had the following papers : Cherokee Blade, established in 1893, and published in turn by Priest & Adams, J. E. Shook and C. F. Gibson; Sentinel, published for a few months in 1913 by E. A. Priest; Cherokee Sun, established in 1914 and published in turn by W. P. Singletary and Walter Hodges; Standard, having a brief existence in 1933 with W. I. Breedlove as editor; Cherokee County Chief, established by Granville Williams in 1934. In February, 1934, the Daily Ranger, the first daily in Rusk's history, made its appearance, with Granville Williams as editor.