Friday, August 22nd, 2014

Choose Our District


The Albert Gallatin Area School District formed July 2, 1951.  Originally it was composed of the Masontown and Point Marion schools.  These schools originally housed their own high schools and junior high schools along with many one room school house buildings throughout the townships served.  The original merger created one high school that was built on land originally owned by Albert Gallatin, U.S. Secretary of Treasury (1801-1814).  The Point Marion and Masontown buildings became junior highs/elementary buildings.  The one room school houses were eliminated.

The Fairchance-Georges and German Township schools officially joined the District on July 1, 1965.  The district was composed of three separate high schools: Fairchance-Georges, German Township and Albert Gallatin.  Four district junior highs and seven elementary schools made up the remainder of the district.  It was not until the 1986-1987 school term that the district consolidated the three high schools into one and the four junior highs into two schools. In addition, the Point Marion Junior High/Elementary School was closed.  There are now six elementary schools within the district. 
 
During this time of change the Albert Gallatin Area School District name remained the same while the schools took on a different identity.  The high school became known as the Tri-Valley High School.  The reign of the Tri-Valley Griffins lasted for six years.  During the 1992-1993 school year, the school board voted to change the name of the schools to reflect the district's name and to honor our historic namesake. 

The District is composed of four contingent townships: German, Georges, Nicholson and Springhill, along with four boroughs: Fairchance, Masontown, Point Marion and Smithfield.  It is located in the southwestern section of Fayette County.  The school district is approximately 144 square miles, bordered by the state of West Virginia to the south, Greene County to the west, and the neighboring school districts of Brownsville Area, Uniontown and Laurel Highlands to the north and east.  The major highways are U.S. Rt. 119, PA Toll-43 and State Rt. 21.


As Secretary of the Treasury, Albert Gallatin found the resources to buy the Louisiana Purchase and for its exploration, and to build the roads and canals to help a young nation survive and thrive. Before and after this, he was intimately involved in such things as the Whiskey Rebellion and the Treaty of Ghent.

Albert Gallatin was an immigrant from Geneva, Switzerland. He lived for a brief time in Boston and Virginia before making his home on the Pennsylvania frontier. During the days of the Whiskey Rebellion, the first great test of the power of the Federal Government, Gallatin played a leading role, though he was much more moderate than many, and advocated against breaking with the government.

Gallatin served briefly as a Senator and a Representative from Pennsylvania, where he showed great insight into the financial problems of the new nation. When elected President, Jefferson appointed him Secretary of the Treasury, where he served for 13 years under Presidents Jefferson and Madison. It was as Secretary of the Treasury that Gallatin arranged for the funding to buy the Louisiana Purchase, and for the exploration of it. When Lewis and Clark explored the new lands, they found where three rivers formed the beginnings of the Missouri River. They named these three rivers after whom they felt were three of the most important Americans alive - Jefferson, Madison, and Gallatin. He also supported and financed many internal improvements, such as roads and canals, so necessary for the transportation of goods from one section of the country to another. An example of such a project would be the Treaty of Ghent, the treaty that ended the War of 1812. He also served as Minister to both England and France.

In 1817, retired from public service, Gallatin moved to New York. Here he became the President of the National Bank of the City of New York and founded New York University. Gallatin died on August 12, 1849 at the age of 88.

 

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