A Fun Quiz!

Quizzes are a great way to feed the history bug. No, not the ones that drove us crazy in high school. OUR quizzes are meant to entice -- even the wrong answers may point you to something in history that makes you smile.

Of course, there are no grades, and wrong answers are supposed to be fun too.

Let us know what you think. This could be the first of many...!

1.    During the 2015-2016 school year, District 191 included 9,506 students. What were the numbers in 1955?
A.   569

Try again.
But in 1955 you could get a Robert the Robot toy for $5.69 from a mail order catalog.

B.   1955

Try Again.

(We thought the coincidence of year and student population might lead you astray.)

C.   4,061


But this was the total number of ISD191 students in 1965. An amazing change in 10 years!

D.   113


And consolidation of schools that year soon rocketed the total all the way to 413.

2.     Who was Burnsville’s first Superintendent of Schools?

A.   John Metcalf


When he was hired in 1955, the system operated four one-room schools (one of them in a private home in the Vista View area). Metcalf oversaw phenomenal growth and served until 1970.

B.   Joe Gothard

Try again.

If the name seems familar, Joe is the present ISD191 superintendent.

C.   Norma Mortenson

Fooled you.

Norma Jeanne Mortenson (Marilyn Monroe) did figure prominently in 1955 education, beginning to study with Lee Strasberg at the Actors Studio.

D.   Anastasia McNamara

Try again.

Miss McNamara taught for District 94 in 1901, after growing up on a farm located where Burnsville High is today!

3.     Until 1956 Burnsville District 15 had a one-room schoolhouse.
Where exactly was it located?
A.   Along highway 13 where the BHS athletic facilities are today.

That's correct! Its proper name is the Bob Pates Athletic Stadium and Dick Hanson Field.

B.   On the south side of highway 13, in the spot occupied today by the Dairy Queen.

Naw, I think one of our writers was just hungry.

C.   Very near the corner of County 42 and County 11.

Try again.

Actually this is the location of another one-room school, for District 94, which merged with Rosemount in 1950.

D.   On the North side of County 42 across from today’s Burnsville Center.

No maam.

Although we should take historical note of Jack’s Restaurant, which was once the place to go in Burnsville for a good steak.

4.     Back in the days of horses and one-room schools, which of these
was not among a teacher's responsibilities?
A.   Whittling nibs for the children’s pens

That was indeed a teacher's duty.

I wonder how many of us have ever whittled a nib into a goose feather.

B.   Filling lamps, cleaning and trimming wicks.
Incorrect guess.

In fact, until electric lighting became generally used, everybody in Burnsville enjoyed this regular task. If your wicks weren't properly trimmed, you'd get a smokey lamp.

C.   Carrying water and coal (or firewood) for classroom use.


She may have gotten a student or two to help, but it was a teacher's responsibility to keep the classroom warm and lit.

D.   Making her way home in time to prepare the evening meal for her husband.  


For decades (for a woman) even becoming engaged could be cause for dismissal.

5.     Back in 1900 which of these languages was least likely to be spoken or heard by Burnsville school children when they went home?
A.   Hungarian.


Are you surprised? According to the 1900 census record, Burnsville’s 358 residents included a family of eight from Hungaria.   So it’s quite possible to have heard the occasional “Jó napot!” (hello)

B.   Gaelic.  


Reading the 1900 Census is like reading a roster from Auld Erin. Truly, early Burnsville was an Irish town!

C.   German.

After the Irish, Germans were most numerous here. They too were early farming immigrants.

D.   Norwegian

Ja ja.  

Burnsville residents included only a couple of Norsk speakers, outnumbered barely by Swedes. Today we speak more than 100 different languages at home, with Spanish, Hmong and Cushite leading after English.)

You've finished this quiz!