Arthur A. Hughart. The life work of Arthur A. Hughart has been in the educational field. In his native state of Indiana he gained more than a local reputation as an able schoolman, not only as an individual teacher but as a school executive, and it was from that field he was called to the superintendency of the city school of Coffeyville in 1912. Here his influence has been of the greatest value. He has thoroughly reorganized and systematized the work of the city school system, has introduced some new departments and methods, and has made the local schools an object of pride to all citizens.
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Born on a farm in Center Township, Porter County, Indiana, August 12, 1864, Arthur Abram Hughart is a son of William A. and Mary (Fulton) Hughart and a grandson of David Hughart. David Hughart, who was of German lineage, and of an old colonial family in Virginia, was born in that state and in 1835 came west and located as a pioneer in Porter County, Indiana. He secured government land in Liberty Township, and in the course of many years of toil and industry made it a fine farm. In 1860 he moved from the farm to Valparaiso, where he was engaged in the buying and shipping of grain. He was a successful business man and a public spirited citizen. He died in Porter County, Indiana, at the venerable age of eighty-nine years.
William A. Hughart, father of Professor Hughart, was born in Westmoreland County, Virginia, June 28, 1830, and was five years of age when brought to Porter County, Indiana. He grew up in that section of Northwest Indiana, attended some of the pioneer schools, and gave his active career to agriculture. He died September 4, 1912. His wife, Miss Fulton, was born in Pennsylvania, a daughter of Abram and Jane (Turner) Fulton. The Fulton family moved to Indiana about 1840, establishing a home in La-Porte County, where Mary Fulton grew to womanhood. She was a woman of fine character, and had a great influence over her children during their youth. She died in 1907 at the age of eighty-three. Of her four children only two reached maturity, the daughter being Ruth, wife of Samuel E. Collins, a building contractor at Valparaiso, Indiana.
The early life of Arthur A. Hughart was spent on a farm. With growing stature and increasing strength he found ample employment in farm duties, and in the meantime attended the district schools. In 1889 he graduated from the Valparaiso High School, and at the age of twenty did his first work as a teacher in one of the district schools of his native county. At an early age he learned to depend upon himself, and he gained his higher education largely through his earnings as a teacher and farm worker. After a thorough four years’ course he was graduated in 1893 A. B. from Wabash College at Crawfordsville, Indiana.
On leaving college Mr. Hughart became principal of the public school at Hebron in Porter County, Indiana, and remained there two years. It was his reputation as a successful principal and able schoolman that brought about in 1895 his election as county superintendent of Porter County. For seven years Mr. Hughart filled that position, and in that connection showed the ability for systematic and efficient organization as the management of schools to the best interests of all concerned that have since been his chief characteristics in educational work.
On leaving the office of county superintendent in 1902 he was elected superintendent of the public school system of Valparaiso, Indiana. There he had a large force of teachers and many schools under his direction, and the ten years of his superintendency are still bearing fruit in that progressive Northern Indiana city.
In August, 1912, Professor Hughart came to Coffeyville to accept the superintendency of the city schools, and he now has under his supervision nine schoolhouses, a faculty of ninety-six teachers and an enrollment of 3,500 scholars. Professor Hughart has the faculty of imparting his enthusiasm to all his subordinates, and during the past four years has worked constantly to the ideal of making the city school system an efficient factor in the training of an army of children for their life service. Under his administration have been established departments for kindergarten and applied arts work in the grades, and at the same time he has gradually broadened and raised the general standards of the city schools. He has secured effective cooperation among his staff of teachers, and has done much to inspire them with the necessity of continued application to the best ideals of the teaching profession. As a result an increasing number of local teachers have been attending the State Normal Schools of Kansas during the summer vacations and working for life certificates in the profession.
Politically Professor Hughart is a republican. He is affiliated with Keystone Lodge No. 102, Ancient Free and Accepted Masons, Coffeyville Chapter No. 89, Royal Arch Masons; Lochinvar Commandery No. 52, Knights Templar, with the council degrees of Masonry at Valparaiso, and with Valparaiso Order of the Eastern Star. During his residence in Valparaiso, Indiana, he served as a trustee of the public library, and has been a member of the Carnegie Library Board at Coffeyville. He is active in the Southeastern Kansas Teachers’ Association, which he served in 1914 as president, and in 1915 as chairman of the executive committee. He is a member of the Schoolmasters’ Club of the State of Kansas. A working member and elder of the Presbyterian Church, he has charge of the Business Men’s Sunday School Class, and his wife is also closely associated with him in his church interests.
August 16, 1893, Mr. Hughart married Miss Ruth Talbortt. Mrs. Hughart died in 1897, leaving one daughter, Lyal, who is now living in the home of her grandparents at Valparaiso. September 26, 1901, Mr. Hughart married Miss Grace Louderback, daughter of John S. Louderback, of Porter County, Indiana. Mr. and Mrs. Hughart have two children: Esther, a freshman in the Coffeyville High School; and Jane.