The One-Room Schoolhouse & An Evolution of Education
In Alto, Michigan lies at first glance just another leaning barn scattered across the country side. This structure’s sophisticated timber framing and overall size raises curiosity.
The first time commuting through this side of Alto’s local highway I had barley spotted the wooden structure hidden in a patch of overgrowth. This sparked an unknown of what to expect, and a potentially exciting explore. I managed to make my way to visit this odd find and upon further investigation I discovered a one-room schoolhouse dating back to the 19th century.
In today’s world, children are accompanied by the luxuries of cafeterias, gyms to computers and even playgrounds. For a period of time in America, generations of youth and much of America received their education within a one-room school house.
Small towns and villages similar to Alto were divided into school districts, they built the schools and hired teachers just like today but back then school houses were originally established by the church.
This particular school house dates back to the late 1800s and early 1900s. Which was just around the corner of the original Freeport school house, named the Fish School. Built in 1854 the Fish School stood on a nearby 400 acre land originally owned by William Yule which is now known as Freeport.
Freeport was established by families commuting the Indian trail that went from Battle Creek to Freeport. This timeline of travel created a strong growth not only in population but within the wealthy agricultural areas surrounding it. Therefor the beginnings of Freeport were established by 1874 and included a few businesses, along with a drug store and general store.
Reference: Heartford Courant – http://www.courant.com/community/south-windsor/rnw-sw-south-windsor-one-room-schoolhouse-0625-20150616-story.html