|From the Dec. 5, 1895, San Francisco Call (Library of Congress/Chronicling America)
Illustration of the Whittier public school, drawn by a Call artist from a photograph.
Although the original reads, “Examination Graduation Questions of Saline County, Kansas,” there has been some debate about the exam’s authenticity and whom it was intended for — either eighth graders or potential teachers. The recent discovery of handwritten notes for the grammar section of the exam, found by a Saline County school superintendent’s grandchildren, support the legitimacy of the test.
The Salina Journal obtained a scan of the original and has a PDF version available on its website: Examination Graduation Questions.
The exam has six sections: grammar, arithmetic, U.S. history, orthography, geography and physiology. The last of which isn't consistently included on copies of the test floating around the Internet. Give it a try — then check your answers!
Grammar (Time, 1 hour)
Arithmetic (Time, 1 hour 15 minutes)
U.S. History (Time, 45 minutes)
Orthography (Time, 1 hour)
Geography (Time, 1 hour)
Physiology (Time, 45 minutes)
Done? Check yourself at one of these two websites I found that claim to have the answers: www.the-reality-check.com/1895_test_answers.html and www.critesclan.com/lee/editorials/eighth-grade-exam.html.