The Free  Church  School in Hill Road (1851 – 1881) was opened in the year 1851 and was run by the  church congregation until 1880, when it was disposed of under the Free Church of Scotland School Properties Act, 1878, and became private property. 

The 1872 Education (Scotland) Act

This act marked a watershed in Scottish education and had an immediate effect on teacher training.

For the first time elementary education was made compulsory for all children aged between 5 and 13. The existing parish and burgh schools were taken over by the state and managed by locally elected School Boards.

The new system was co-ordinated nationally by the Scotch Education Department with the curriculum emphasising the teaching of reading, writing, and arithmetic (the three ‘Rs’).

The churches made a crucial contribution to the new system by handing over their schools without charge to the School Boards. At this time the Free Church supported 548 schools across Scotland together with 584 teachers.

The empty school building was then leased to the Stonehouse School Board for one year in 1881, under the name of Hill Academy, while Townhead Street Public School was under construction as their lease had expired and they rented the E.U. Church until the new school was erected at Townhead Street in 1881.

Unfortunately Hill Road School was destroyed by fire in November 1936.

The group has a book of autographs in its possession which features signatures  of the pupils who achieved standard grade VI. . This book also detailed the pupils address, age and has additional comments listed although it is not know who made the comments. Listed below is an alphabetical index of the pupils who achieved standard grade V1 between 1877 and 1881 along with comments. 

Please note that the physical autographs can be viewed at our resource room by appointment (contact the group via email or join the group to access all records in the members area for £11.00 per annum.

111881BarrieHugh37 New StreetStonehouse12
41879BarrowmanJeanieHill CottageStonehouse14
91880BorlandSusan26 Angle StreetStonehouse12
41879BrownArchibald6 Queen StreetStonehouse12Bank Clerk. Teller 1889.
11877BrownWilliam25 Camnethan StreetStonehouse12Served his time in the Post Office then died.
71880FroodWilliam4 Queen StreetStonehouse12
81880GilmourGavinKirk StreetStonehouse13
71880GrayGavinCamnethan StreetStonehouse13
41879GrayGeorgeCross 7Stonehouse14Grocer.
111881GrayRobertAvon CottageStonehouse12Died.
61880HamiltonJamesHamilton FarmStonehouse13
71880HamiltonJames7 New StreetStonehouse12
1881HamiltonJanetHamilton FarmStonehouse12
31877LeitchRachel21 New StreetStonehouse1321/2/1894 A dress maker.
81880LethamWilliamEast MainsStonehouse13
11877LoudonJames19 Camnethan StreetStonehouse12
51880McLartyDonald31 New StreetStonehouse1321/2/1894 At present barman with A. Taylor, Strathaven
121881MillarMaggie10 Trongate StreetStonehouse12
111881MillarWilliam3 Boghall StreetStonehouse14Died July 1889.
21877PatersonAdamWest MainsGlassford12
111881PellingAndrew33 Lawrie StreetStonehouse11
81880PellingRichardLawrie StreetStonehouse13
11877ShearerJames28 Townhead StreetStonehouse1321/2/1894 Reporter and Compoutor on Hamilton Advertiser Staff
91880ShearerMaggie14 Trongate StreetStonehouse14
61880StruthersAllanBroomfieldDalserf13Went out to Australia for health and died soon after arriving there 1889
41879ThomsonAnn4 Trongate StreetStonehouse13Served time as a Pupil Teacher. Now ex-Pupil Teacher at Sandford School.
11877ThomsonJames14 Camnethan StreetStonehouse13Served as a Pupil Teacher then went into business in Glasgow.
41879ThomsonJamesHill RoadStonehouse11Served as a Pupil Teacher, went to the normal in the 1st Class and came out 1st. Teaching in etc et
111881ThomsonJames27 Lockhart StreetStonehouse12
111881ThomsonJames4 Trongate StreetStonehouse11
31877ThomsonJane4 Trongate StreetStonehouse1321/2/1894 At present Certificated Mistress in Duke Street Public School, Larkhall
21877ThomsonRobertHill RoadStonehouse12Died
61880TwaddleJohn35 New StreetStonehouse13
31877WallaceMaggie1 Union StreetStonehouse13
11877WattWilliam43 Lockhart StreetStonehouse1121/2/1894 A Teacher in English in SKerry's Civil Service Clause, Edinburgh
51880WilsonWilliamGreenside PlaceStonehouse11Died.