It was in the Hilty school west of Bluffton in the early 1910s
Imagine teaching school with a classroom with five sets of twins.
Beyond all the other issues of teaching, 110 school years ago, that was the situation at the Hilty country school west of Bluffton on Columbus Grove Road. Ed Hilty was the teacher of the 10 children plus the remaining students covering grades 1 to 8.
Like all one-room schools in the Bluffton Swiss Settlement, this school had three names.
First is had a township identification, in this case, District No. 3.
Second it had a tree name, in this case. Silver Maple school.
Third, it had a Swiss surname, based on several factors including the original Swiss land owner, in this case, a Hilty family.
Here are the twins in a photo by an unknown photographer taken probably in the 1913-14 school year.
Back row from left, Melvin and Melvina Hilty, Levi and William Althaus and Martha and Bertha Lora.
Front from left, Hiram and Helen Augsburger and Ada and Ida Lora.
Entire school 1913-14
Here is the photo of all students attending Hilty school in the 1913-1914 school year.
Front row from left, Angelena Althaus Alspaugh, Mary Sumney Neuenschwander, Helen Augsburger Steiner, Hiram Augsburger, Ida Lora Minor, Ada Lora Bowsher, Willis Bixel, Oscar Althaus, Walter Garmatter, Lela Althaus Ford, Wilma Neuenschwander Gratz, Victoria Lora Seltz and Harley Burkholder.
Second row from left, Elizabeth Garmatter Deeds, Verna Burkholder Diller, Alma Steiner Jorg, Isaac Neuenschwander, Wendell Diller, Henry Althaus, Eli Garmatter, Elmer Nusbaum and Gideon Garmatter.
Third row from left, Elvina Augsburger Esau, Eunice Neuenschwander King, Irene Althaus Hall, Adella Steiner Oyer, Ella Augsburger Steffen, Emma Steiner Bertsche, Melvina Hilty Whisler, Melvin Hilty, Martha Lora Maynard, Bertha Lora, Frances Diller Moeller, Wilbur Sumney, Gilbert Nusbaum, William Garmatter and Guy Staut.
Top row from left, Levi Althaus, Ed Hilty (teacher), William Althaus, Paul Diller.