Photo contributed by Dale Ratcliffe
Dale believes his grandmother, (Elberta Gerdes) is in the photo about 10 years old around 1908.
With the help of Larry Reynolds, who lived in the area in the 1940-50's, and is closely associated with the family, we have been able to determine a few things about this photo. The teachers are definitely Cephus and Ruia Margaret (Bowersox) Hurless. It was taken at someone's house because it isn't any of schools in which Larry attended or has seen.
In 1902 Cephas LeRoy Hurless was in charge of the Coleta school. He was born in Genesee Twp., Whiteside County IL on 24 March 1875 the son of Rev. Cephas and Tabitha A. (Winters) Hurless. His assistant at the school was Ruia Bowersox and she became his wife on August 20, 1902 at her parents home in Johnson Co. Iowa. Cephas did own a farm on Covell Road and this house might have been his house before he bought the farm. Cephas and Ruia devoted their lives in teaching in Genesee Twp. They apparently had no children of their own but in 1930 a niece, Grace Hurless [Yessler], age 12, was living with them. Cephas Hurless died 21 April 1934 and is buried at Bethel Cemetery in Carroll County. After his death Ruia went on to become the county superintendent of schools. Ruia died in 1970 and is buried next to her husband at Bethel.
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