The Story of Dana Elementary School
Education in the Dana community began after the Civil War in 1866, when J.J. Blythe began teaching in this area. The first school was known as “Old Blue House” and “Blue House Academy”. Captain W.G.B. Morris, a former Confederate soldier, was the first professor at this school. During his nine years of service, Blue Ridge Academy served as the educational hub of this area. The influence of Dana School extended beyond the county by attracting students from Rutherford, Transylvania, Polk, and Buncombe counties. Many of these students became professional and civic leaders.
In 1907, a larger building was constructed. F.G. Anders, Henderson County Superintendent, attained great strides for the improvement of education here. He began a county-wide program of school consolidation and transportation of pupils to school by bus. He also instigated improved professional training and standardized testing in the county. In 1928, the eight or more schools in the Dana area were combined. A new modern school was built near the center of Dana.
In 1960, the high schools in Henderson County were consolidated, and Dana contained grades one through eight. In 1974, a new facility was constructed after Dana School was destroyed by fire. The present facility contains grades K-5 and is named Dana Elementary School.
Our Home in Dana
The Dana Community is a rural area located in the eastern section of Henderson County. It stretches seven miles along the “Ridge,” as the Eastern Continental Divide is locally known.
Some years before the schools of the Dana community were consolidated, a few progressive farmers of the area began planting apple orchards. Through practical experience of trial and error, and later through soil analysis, it was discovered that the soil of Dana was ideal for apple production. Soon vegetable crops were also grown to supply the markets of the deep South. The progress of the community and economy of the area began to grow and expand by leaps and bounds.
The Dana area is a thriving community of prosperous farms and vegetable-producing businesses. In addition, the Dana area includes resorts, recreational vehicle parks, packing houses, businesses, mobile home parks, a fire department, and numerous churches. The growth and prosperity of the community has carried over to Dana Elementary School. The cooperative effort is shown between home and school.