Heath Claiborne Gallery
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  Although depicting a building in disrepair, this painting still intends to convey a strong spiritual message of hope because the structure still stands. Several aspects of the painting were designed to convey that hope. First, to exaggerate the structure's resilience, its axis is slightly tilted to the left. Directing the sun's rays to the most damaged side of the building also sheds light on its character. Finally, an unusually vivid blue sky and spring blooms were intended to support an atmosphere of hope. In reflection, despite moral decay or individual trials, hope in our Lord and Savior is always present. Located in the foothills near the Great Smoky Mountains, little information has been recorded about The Midway School . Most information lives on in the memories of those students and teachers who found knowledge and understanding within its walls. The Midway School, in Sevier County's seventh district, was erected in 1913 to offer shelter to the young people of the sparsely settled community. The name "Midway" was inherited because the school was built midway between the two other closest schools, Powder Springs and Catlettsburg. Over the next half-century, the building would not only serve as a schoolhouse, but also for community gatherings, elections, and as a chapel for a traveling preacher. The first teachers of record (1922) were Sam Huffaker and Nora Atchley. 38 boys and 33 girls sat behind 44 double desks. According to timeworn pages in the Sevier County Board of Education offices, the teachers were paid $60 a month. Sometimes they were paid with county warrants and they had to discount them to obtain cash. In 1937, Nelle Elder and Daisy Trotter were the teachers. They began the school day with chapel. Then they taught reading, English, arithmetic, civics, Tennessee history, writing, and drawing. A year-end report shows that the teachers placed a value of $1,150 on the building and surrounding land. Other assets were 4 books, valued at $3.50. In 1963, teacher Robert Fain closed the doors of the school for the last time. The students were reassigned to Sevierville Elementary School, along with students from Millican Grove. The property reverted back to the M.B. Kyker family.