Osceola County Historical Society Blog

Shake Rag School

Posted by Anza Bast on Aug 14, 2018 8:00:00 AM

It was slightly different in design but dating to the same 1890s time period as the replica schoolhouse at the Pioneer Village and two stories have emerged regarding how the school got its name.  Miss Emma Yowell, one of the early teachers refers to it as “Shaker Rag” and stated in a 1940 newspaper interview that it was later known as “Pine Grove” in a 1940 newspaper.

 Shake Rag School, KG 23 Apr  1958


One origin of the name claims that the teacher would stand outside and wave or “shake” a rag in the air to let the children know it was time to go into the schoolhouse for classes.  The other comes from students who attended the school and related this version in a 1958 news article – “The school got its unusual name because of the numerous square dances held at the school and in those days the Be Bop language for cutting a rug was Shaking the Rag.”


In 1958 the school made a very comfortable home for Charles Tyson and his dog on the small farm and 20 acres of grove.  How much longer it remained standing is unknown but it is believed to have been there through the early 1960s.  Located near Rose Hill Cemetery in Kissimmee, Shakerag Road was named after the school located there.


Sources:  “The Kissimmee Gazette” May 24, 1940, April 23, 1958

Photo source:  “The Kissimmee Gazette” April 23, 1958

Topics: Osceola History, Around Osceola, History, Educational, Osceola County History, City of Kissimmee, Osceola County, Oscoela County Historical Society, Kissimmee

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The Osceola County Historical Society is focused on preserving Osceola County’s rich, cultural history while sharing it with others. This blog is perfect for just that. 

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