Nettie Depp

Historical Marker #2397 in Glasgow notes the work of Nettie B. C. Depp , a pioneer in education. Having taught for several years, she ran on the Democratic ticket for county school superintendent in 1913 and became the first female public official in Barren County - seven years before women were allowed to vote.

Born on November 21, 1874, Depp taught at several schools before serving as Barren County Schools Superintendent from 1914-1917. During her time as superintendent, Depp was instrumental in unifying local schools to create the county's first four-year high school, which was housed in the former Liberty College in Glasgow. The merger of United Glasgow Graded and the Barren County High schools increased the number of enrolled students from twenty to more than seventy.

Managing a rural district presented challenges, including impassable roads and frequently flooded areas, which made it difficult to unite other schools in the county. Despite these obstacles, Depp improved and repaired local one-room schools by constructing seven schoolhouses to serve broad geographic areas.

Her term as superintendent was focused on working toward the future. Depp introduced and implemented a uniform curriculum for all schools in the county. Several schools added libraries and others utilized a traveling library service. She also strived to enforce the compulsory school law. By the end of her four years, she had actually fined several families for not sending their children to school and observed a reduced number of notices about parents who failed to send their children to school.

After serving as superintendent, she became principal at Cave City School until 1923. That same year, the Republican Party asked Depp to run for re-election as superintendent, but she declined, stating that she would only run in the name of education, not a political party. She completed her career as a teacher in Scottsville from 1923-31.

Images

Liberty College

Liberty College

A photo of Liberty College, site of the unified Barren County High School in Glasgow. Courtesy of the Kentucky Historical Society. View File Details Page

Nettie Depp

Nettie Depp

Portrait of Nettie Depp. Courtesy for the Kentucky Museum at WKU. View File Details Page

Cite this Page:

Kate Sowada, “Nettie Depp,” ExploreKYHistory, accessed March 24, 2017, http://explorekyhistory.ky.gov/items/show/451.

Subjects

Share this Story