Almost all Americans went to school at some point, but few attended school regularly. Even fewer went beyond elementary education. By the 1830s, most states provided some free education for the poor, but the idea of free public education for everyone had not yet gained wide support. Teachers were generally underpaid and undertrained, and depended heavily on rote memorization and stern discipline. In 1839, however, the first school for teachers in the United States was established, in Lexington, Massachusetts. While it was far from a brilliant success, it was a step toward the reformation of the American educational system.