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As It Was: Siskiyou County’s Bogus School Opens in 1871

First established in 1871, the Bogus School in Siskiyou County, Calif., has closed and reopened several times. Saleen Heckle was an early teacher during the 1899-1900 term.

The school house is located about 7 miles up Copco Road from its junction with the Montague-Klamath River Road.

The book titled “California Place Names” says the Bogus area was named after counterfeiters who minted coins at a creekside furnace close to the school site. 

A petition in 1892 to divide the school district raised a ruckus.  One parent asked that his name be removed from the petition after he learned his children would have to attend what he called the “Divide School.”  He wrote, “They say it is only six miles to the Divide school; that is the distance straight across, but there is about a mile of broken lava and if we did get over the lava, there would be no way to get across the river as there is no bridge or fairy [ferry]...” 

After closures, the Bogus School reopened in 1911 and again in 1939 and today has 12 students.

Sources:  Gudde, Erwin G. California Place Names. Berkeley And Los Angeles, University of California Press, 1969, https://books.google.com/books?id=M-22djGNuhwC&printsec=frontcover#v=onepage&q&f=false. Accessed 27 Apr. 2017; Balfrey, Stanley. History of the Schools of Siskiyou County. Siskiyou County Office of Education, https://www.siskiyoucoe.net/Page/455. Accessed 22 Apr. 2017.

Gail Fiorini-Jenner is a writer and teacher. Her first novel "Across the Sweet Grass Hills", won the 2002 WILLA Literary Award. She co-authored four histories with Arcadia Publishing: Western Siskiyou County: Gold & Dreams, Images of the State of Jefferson, The State of Jefferson: Then & Now, which placed in the 2008 Next Generation Awards for Nonfiction and Postcards from the State of Jefferson.