CLASS PHOTO IN FRONT OF RURAL SCHOOLHOUSE IN PRAGUE, NEBRASKA

This cabinet card offers a glimpse back into historical times of the American education system. This image dates back before “teaching for the test” was standard policy for many school districts. Sixteen children are posed in front of their schoolhouse. Their young teacher stands behind his class. The children seem to have dressed nicely for “picture day”,  but at least a couple of the boys are barefoot. F. H.Svoboda was the photographer of this image and his studio was located in Prague, Nebraska. At one time, Svoboda published the first, and only,  Czech juvenile magazine in Nebraska. He was a school teacher and later engaged in photography. In 1909, he began to publish the Schuyler Messenger, which existed until 1920. The Messenger was a weekly newspaper in Schuyler, Nebraska. The town of Prague has an interesting history. Its early inhabitants included many Czech settlers who arrived in America seeking prosperity during the 1880’s. In 1887, the town was built to support a newly established railroad station. The town was built by the Lincoln Land Company and became a thriving community catering to the agricultural economy of the area. The largest business in the town was a lumberyard. The town’s name, Prague, is named after the capital city of Czechoslovakia.