yesterday's tennessee

Yesterday's Tennessee
People of Action - 1969

From Lillye Younger, People of Action (Brewer Printing Company, Jackson, Tennessee, n.d.).  Special thanks to Constance Collett and the estate of the late Lillye Younger for permission to make this web page.

Joe Quinn


Teaching Career Ended After 33 Years Service

PARSONS, Tenn. — Joe Quinn closed the door to a teaching career of 33 years in January when he walked out of Parsons Junior High school. He was teaching the sixth grade.

"I started teaching school in 1921 at Brodies Landing," Quinn said. The school was nicknamed "Seed Tick." "That was back in the water bucket and dipper days," he says.

"We didn't know what running water or drinking fountains were. I taught all eight grades in the school, built the fires in winter, served as janitor and in all other capacities. Methods of teaching have changed tremendously since that time," he said.

Quinn has taught in practically all the schools in the lower end of the county. Yellow Springs, Cherry, Cub Creek Hall, Cedar Hill, Spence, Rocky Springs, Pleasant Hill and Glenwood are among the ones he remembers.

"With the entrance of the school buses transporting pupils from the country to town schools, these small country schools faded away," he added.

In 1955 Quinn started teaching in Parsons. He first taught civics, world geography, and history at Parsons High School; later he taught the sixth, seventh and eighth grades.

"I enjoyed teaching both boys and girls, however it was easier to discipline girls. My advice to the students of today is to stay in school and prepare for a chosen career. It's the best plan of survival in this modern world of automation," he added.

Asked what he will do since retiring, Quinn says, "I have made no definite plans: I'll just take it easy for awhile."

He attended Union University and received his 13.S. degree at Memphis State University.

He is the son of Mrs. Cora Lee Quinn and the late Lafayette Quinn. He was born at Cedar Hill and moved to Parsons in 1957. He makes his home with his mother at 308 Jennings Street.

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