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West Manchester Highland Park School notable, but Dogtown School would have been cool

York, Pa.-area school
West Manchester Township (Pa.) Park School served as a private residence when this photograph was taken in 1998. It appears in the township’s 200th anniversary book. Also of interest: York County’s Pinchgut vs. The Gut and Growing off-peak trolley ridership in York County: Build a park, Highland Park and Smoketown a popular York County name a century ago.

An e-mailer wondered about the old school building in the Highland Park area, sometimes referred to as Dogtown, Smoketown or Highlandtown, in West Manchester Township.
“The shell of the building is still there,” she wrote, “located at 1441
Old Salem Rd.”
We immediately turned to the trustworthy and fact-filled “A History of West Manchester Township, York County, Pennsylvania, 1799-1999.”
Here’s the skinny:

“When the School Board met in June, 1905, at Highland Amusement Park, they discussed searching for land on which to build a new school. They agreed to buy a lot on the New Salem Road for $320 from Henry Tyson. Bids for the building project were soon advertised. The board accepted a bid of $1,780 from the Peter M. Quickel Corporation to build the school and have it completed by September 4, 1905. This red brick building school was first called Markel’s, then Highland Park and also known as Park Grammar School. When the school district decided it was no longer needed, it was sold, It is now used as a private residence. Former teachers recalled a Mock Wedding on May Day, the PTA, and many festive Christmas programs.”

Markel’s, Highland Park and Park Grammar School – those are solid, memorable school names.
Imagine, though, how unforgettable it would have been if the school had picked up one of the neighborhood’s other names and became Dogtown School. Now, grads would have bragged about that.