Ranburne is the oldest settlement in Cleburne County. Cleburne County was named for General Patrick R. Cleburne of Texas, a Confederate General who was killed during the Battle of Franklin, Tennessee, on November 20, 1864. Ranburne was settled in 1814 and was called "Lost Creek" after a little boy was lost in the swamps of the nearby creek. It was given its present name, Ranburne, in 1894 by Judge TJ Thomason of Randolph County and JE Thomason. The name was derived by taking the first three letters of Randolph and the last five letters of Cleburne.
The first school building, a one-room log house, was constructed in 1860. When the log house became too small for the growing school, the Baptist church was used as a school. Some of the teachers who taught there were Mr. George Pirkle, Annie Bass, Sam Wiggins, Joe Walker, and John Ballard.A new school was built where the Methodist church stands today. It was a two-story, three room building which was later destroyed by fire. A two-story building with four classrooms on the first floor, two classrooms on the second floor, and an auditorium was built near the present site of the bus garage. In 1933, this building was sold to Isaac Truitt, the highest bidder, who used the wood to build homes in the local area. A rock building was built on the site of our present school. In 1936, this schoolhouse was also destroyed by fire.
Our present day school was built around 1940 with the aid of the NYA and the PWA. Ranburne's present enrollment is approximately 750 in grades K-12. The land for the school campus was donated by Daniel Alewine of South Carolina who was born on February 10, 1793. He moved to Lost Creek with his family before 1850. His family's burial plot is on school property near the band building.
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