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Looking Backward: Wright's Corners School, District No. 12

One of Daniel's great, great grandsons, Leonard S. Chase, married Ivy K. Austic of South Granby, and continued to farm on the family homestead across from the Wright's Corners school. They had two children, Robert and Jean. Jean went to school at Wright's Corners with her future husband, Arthur J. Coville. Jean passed away in 2003, after a lifetime of service and friendship in the community. Art's still going strong at the age of 87. Back on an unseasonably warm Saturday in March, I had a chance to visit with Art. Joining Art was his son, Bruce, the well-known author of children's books, and Alice Horner, lifetime resident of nearby Little Utica and friend of the family.

Bruce got the conversation going. "When dad's mother died, he was sent to live and attend school in Wright's Corners." Art picked up the story from there. "I was born Arthur Farrington in South Granby. I was only three years old when my mother died, and my brother Lloyd was just eighteen months old. It was very sudden. Luther and Ruth Coville adopted me. Luther was my mother's brother. At the same time, Lloyd was adopted by Ezra and Viola Coville Baker. Viola was my mother's sister. So, I became Arthur Coville and he became Lloyd Baker." Bruce commented that due to these adoptions and subsequent remarriages, "Carl Carpenter, dad's best friend from school, would have been his foster stepbrother-in-law. So, it's really not a family tree, it's a family bush."

Art remembers that his teacher was Myrtle Potter. "I had her the whole time I was there (circa 1927 to 1934), up until eighth or ninth grade, when I went to Phoenix. My future wife, Jean Chase, was in school with me at the time. She was four years younger than me. Miss Potter boarded down at the Chase farm, and Jean didn't like living with the school-teacher, because she could never get away from her. When my father-in-law (Leonard Chase) was fairly young and going to the Wright's Corners school, he had a similar problem. His teacher was his sister, Alida, but everybody called her Lidie or Lida. But, he had to call her Miss Chase." Alida later married Clarence Reed and taught in several other rural schools in the town of Lysander.

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