An Early Center of Education
Just three weeks after reaching Granville, pioneer villagers decided on December 9, 1805 to build a log cabin where eighty children would attend school. By 1820, public school classes were being held in a three-story brick building. When rail lines and the National Road bypassed the village, dreams of becoming an industrial and commercial center were dashed. Educational institutions, however, thrived and by the Civil War Granville's citizens had organized the following: the Granville Literary and Theological Institution, later called Granville College and then renamed Denison University; the Granville Female Seminary, the Granville Episcopal Female Seminary, the Young Ladies' Institute, the Granville Female Academy, and the Granville Male Academy. As Granville enters its third century, educational excellence continues to attract students to the community's schools.
Educating Young Women
Granville's citizens were early advocates of advanced education for women. By 1827, thirty young ladies attended a "Select School." The Granville Congregational Church, today's Presbyterian Church, formalized these classes and established the Granville Female Academy in 1833—first in the Old Academy Building and in 1837 on East Broadway. On this site in 1832, Charles Sawyer founded the Granville Female Seminary, a Baptist institution. The Episcopal Female Seminary purchased and used the buildings for its school from 1838 to 1861. Marsena Stone then purchased this site in 1861 for the Young Ladies' Institute, which had begun in 1859 in the Baptist church. Stone's successor was Daniel Shepardson and when he retired in 1888, the institution was renamed Shepardson College. In 1900, Shepardson College consolidated with Denison University.