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NC Kansas
Catharine Explorations
Learn more about Catharine by following the links below:

Catherine School

Address: 2131 St. Anton Street
Catharine, KS 67627

About this Exploration:

The first school house (School District #4) in Catharine was built in 1879 and was made of native limestone. Prior to that, lessons were taught at the home of Jacob Schmidt "Der Schulmeister" (the schoolmaster).  He was a teacher in Katharinenstadt, Russia and continued that role in Catharine. 

The small stone school house (46x23 feet) was used as a public school until 1897 when it was changed to a parochial school after the parish purchased it from the public school district.

A few years later, this one room school was becoming too crowded and the current two-story limestone structure located just north of the church was completed in 1902.  It was erected at a cost of $4,238 and for 33 years operated as a parochial school.

In 1935 the school changed back to a public school for 1st grade through 8th grade.  The Catharine School Board met in March 1965 with the Hays School Board and discussed consolidating with Hays School District #489. With the formal consolidation on July 1, 1966, Catharine retained ownership of the school building and in 1968 the seventh and eighth grade classes began attending at the Junior High School in Hays. It continued to operate as the Catharine Elementary School until 1972 when the property was sold for $1 to the Unified School District 489.  Due to declining enrollment and budget issues, the Hays School District officially closed the school on August 1, 1999 and the and the building was deeded back to the parish.


Currently, this building is used on Sunday mornings after Mass for religious education classes for children preschool through 8th grade.  The St. Catherine Knights of Columbus and the Christian Mothers/Altar Society hold meetings, functions, bingo, card parties and annual gatherings at the old school house.  The building can also be rent by parish members for birthday parties, family reunions, bridal and baby showers, Christmas parties and small wedding receptions.


contact info
Pam Schmidt
P.O. Box 61
Catharine, KS 67627
Phone: 785.628.2910
Glenda Schuetz
1316 E. 22nd St.
Hays, KS 67601-2301
Phone: 785.625.5478 / 785.650.1746
Greg Schmidt
P.O. Box 61
Catharine, KS 67627
Phone: 785.628.2910
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