Places to go and things to see by Gypsy Bev

Posts tagged ‘One room school’

Algonquin Mill Fall Festival Features Crafts, Food and Entertainment

Algonquin Mill 2

This old mill is the reason for the Algonquin Mill Fall Festival.

Take nine tons of cabbage and ferment it into sauerkraut. Grind buckwheat and wheat into flour. Saw boards at an old fashioned sawmill. Embroidery a quilt. These activities from days gone by are just a sampling of what happens at the Algonquin Mill Festival near Carrollton on October 13-15.

The festival began in 1971 to pay off the loan the historical society took to purchase Algonquin Mill on 3.8 acres. They wanted this historic spot to be preserved to help people understand life in the 1800s. It’s been a popular annual event ever since with 16,000 – 20,000 people attending the three day event.

Algonquin 1853 Bridge

This 1853 bridge built by Wrought Iron Bridge Co. of Canton was still in use in the 1960s.

The original old mill built in the early 1800s is their reason for being. The first two mills on this spot were driven by water from nearby McGuire Creek. Today’s mill, built in 1826, was originally operated by water. In 1890 it was converted to steam power. At its peak, the mill produced 25 barrels a day, grinding corn, oats, wheat and buckwheat.

Algonquin Mill

John Miday, miller, and Bill Baughman make sure the corn mill is working properly.

The mill was closed in 1939 and the steam engine went off to fight in WWII. Today they use a one hundred year old steam engine to power the gristmill and grind cornmeal and flour.

Algonquin School 2

This one-room school is the oldest building on the property with typical pot-bellied stove.

The complex contains many other buildings as well and many of them are original. The log buildings have all been brought on site from nearby locations. The one-room school happens to be the oldest of those buildings. During the festival a schoolmarm will be teaching class.

Algonquin Volunteers

Volunteers from all over the area enjoy a tasty pot-luck lunch every Thursday.

They make enough money at the three day festival to support the Algonquin Mill Complex for the entire year. Their volunteers are amazing and very active as they arrive every Thursday all year long to work on projects at the complex. Many said they planned their work schedule so they could have Thursday off.

Whole families get involved in helping here. Volunteers come from all around and even though there is a large number, David McMahon, president of the Carroll County Historical Society, said they could use twice as many.

Algonquin Cookie House

One of the original buildings is now the Cookie House with the Cheese House close by.

Old fashioned foods are a highlight of the festival. Pancakes, sauerkraut, apple butter, homemade jams, cider, and maple syrup are made and served. Or you can buy some to take home and enjoy. The mill also grounds fresh cornmeal along with buckwheat, spelt and wheat flour.

Algonquin Sauerkraut

Dave George takes his job seriously as the man in charge of the sauerkraut operation.

Dave happens to be in charge of the sauerkraut and that’s no small task. When you start out with nine tons of cabbage, it takes a careful eye to make certain it ferments properly in large containers. Then it will be put in jars to be sold at the festival. Word has it that they are usually sold out of sauerkraut by noon on Sunday!

Algonquin Art

This is just a small sampling of the art on display in the past.

The barn at Whispering Winds Farm held square dances in years gone by, but today that’s where you’ll find an Art & Photography Show. This juried show displays original pieces created between 2014 and 2017 with no previous entries allowed. Every year it’s a whole new show, sharing one-of-a-kind items.

Algonquin Crafters 2

Women embroidery a quilt and work on many crafts in the Civil War era Gothic farmhouse.

You’ll discover time honored crafts such as rugweaving, spinning and quilting in the Civil War era farmhouse. The walls are covered with aprons, quilts, scarves and rugs they have made to sell. These ladies begin working on next year’s crafts the Thursday after the festival ends to refill the walls.

Algonquin Threshing Machine

Dave McMahon, president of Carroll County Historical Society, explains the antique Case threshing machine in their Farm Museum.

Throughout the grounds demonstrations exist for chair caning, wood carving, candle dipping, broom making and blacksmith trades. An old sawmill attracts people of all ages and is one of the most popular demonstrations.

Algonquin Mill Barn

This is the last original work of Mail Pouch Barn painter, Harley Warrick. There are two other Mail Pouch Barns Warrick painted at the complex.

Don’t forget, all day long old-time entertainment takes place. There’ll be cloggers, banjo and fiddle players and gospel groups performing. Local high school bands and choirs also enjoy participating. If you want, you could sit there all day and be entertained.

Algonquin Stagecoach Inn

On the hillside behind this old stagecoach inn, Perry J. Vasbinder Arboretum has been established with over 400 different plantings.

If you should happen to want to visit Algonquin Mill at a time other than the festival, Thursdays are the perfect time as volunteers are always there to answer questions. Of course, you can walk around the grounds 365 days a year and learn about the complex from literature available on the wall of their information center, but buildings will be locked.

This festival is the perfect place to step back in time and enjoy all those old fashioned tastes, crafts, and entertainment. Entry per vehicle is $8.00 so load up the van and have a day of fun and learning. You’ll be glad you stopped by.

The Algonquin Mill Complex is located south of Carrollton along OH 322, which is east of I-77. There are several bends to make on this scenic adventure no matter what direction you are coming from, so it’s best to place their address in your GPS system. Find them at 4296 Scio Road SW. 





Discover Local History at Guernsey County Historical Museum

Guernsey County Historical Museum

Guernsey County Historical Museum

Located in the oldest frame house in Cambridge, the Guernsey County Historical Museum, expanding since 1963, presents a vast array of memorabilia from by-gone years. The new curator, Judy Clay, gave a very knowledgeable tour of the museum from top to bottom, and is constantly reorganizing displays.

Built in 1823, what is known as the McCracken – McFarland House sat on the corner of Steubenville Avenue and 8th Street.  Then in 1915, the house was moved down the block and turned on its foundation. The red stained glass in the front door is original, having been moved without damage.  Outside the house the yard has some interesting features. There is a 4′ tall National Trail mileage marker, and the original steps from the 1823 house. Since the house is so old, you might think there would be spirits wandering its halls, but not so say those who work there. It is the quietest old house imaginable and nothing unusual happens there…at least not yet!

Bridge crossing Wills Creek

Bridge crossing Wills Creek – today replaced by the viaduct.

An interesting sidenote is that this house was actually part of the Underground Railroad and the McCracken family was active in helping the slaves move to safety. Today you will find a replica of the wooden, covered, two-lane bridge that crossed Wills Creek stored in the basement, where most likely slaves were hidden years ago.

At that time, homes had two sitting rooms.  One was for family use, while the other was a formal parlor used only when special guests arrived. A beautiful marbletop table that had belonged to the McFarland family has a place of honor in the formal parlor. Pieces of Cambridge Glass and Universal Pottery are scattered throughout the house, as these were two important means of earning a living during those early years in Guernsey County..

Guernsey County Hall of Fame Wall

Guernsey County Hall of Fame.

Ice Bicycle

Ice Bicycle

The beautiful family sitting room felt cozy in its time, as this was the first house in Cambridge to be heated with gas; however, candle light was still used for reading. The walls in the hallway are covered with pictures of people who have made a difference in the area…the Guernsey County Hall of Fame.

The Tool Room contained an old mail cart and an ice bike. The mail cart was actually used by the Cambridge Post Office to pick up mail from the Cambridge Train Station. Among other items was a cigar press from the Quaker City Company that made cigars.

Every room upstairs had a special theme. The Military Room contained items from Civil War days to WWII. A small sewing room held a spinning wheel and a weasel, which when it got filled with thread – went pop! That was the basis of the song, “Pop Goes the Weasel”. A dentist’s office, Dickens’ room, and rooms packed with antique ladies clothes finished off the top floor.

Old One-room school

Old One-room school

The One-Room School display contained traditional desks, teacher’s desk, blackboard, and some of those old books that were used long ago. On special occassions, retired teachers will describe basic lessons and activities in a one room school.

Bountiful treasures reside inside this old frame house. Perhaps you would like to roam the halls and revive some old memories. If you have any pieces of history you would care to share, please contact the museum. Every small town should take pride in having a special place to keep the history of their area alive for future generations.

Guernsey County Museum is located in Cambridge, Ohio near the crossroads of I-70 and I-77. The easiest route is from I-70, Exit 178, which is State Route 209 West. Follow 209 straight to the Court House. Make a left hand turn and a quick right turn on 8th Street right beside the Court House. After one block, make a right hand turn and a quick left turn on 8th Street again. The Museum is located just a few doors down on the right hand side at 218 N. 8th Street. 

School Is In The Air

Hopewell One-Room School at Indian Camp

Hopewell One-Room School at Indian Camp

The cool morning air whispers Time for school. Memories flood back of days at a one-room school in Indian Camp. All eight grades were in one room so students helped each other climb the ladder of learning. Perhaps today is the perfect time to take a road trip leading back many years ago to Hopewell School. Chances are someone you know, or even you, yourself, have attended a similar school.

After driving the winding roller-coaster road of State Route 658 northwest of Cambridge, Ohio, the old school brings a smile. Those sturdy sandstone foundation blocks remain intact where so many students received building blocks for their lives from 1905-1955. Today the school is kept in repair while being used by the Indian Camp Grange, 4-H club, Hopewell Homemakers and once a year, the Hopewell One-Room-School Reunion.

Favorite Recess Tree

Favorite Recess Tree

The trees have grown noticeably larger in front of the school.  Their branches provided the perfect places to sit while watching others play on the large surrounding field, or sharing secrets with your friends. In the absence of playground equipment, students played hopscotch at the top of the drive, baseball behind the school, or Annie Annie Over across the roof.

Children from miles around arrived at Hopewell School by bus, horseback, bicycle or walking. On the first day of school they proudly carried their yellow Big Chief tablet and a pencil or two. If they were lucky, they might have a box of eight new Crayola Crayons and Elmer’s School Paste.  Those scents still stir up memories.

Teacher, Mrs. Mary Clark, uses the globe to explain geography.

Teacher, Mrs. Mary Clark, uses the globe to explain geography  during the 1950’s.

Inside the building, the pot bellied stove and the old desks are gone. The teacher or a student who lived close by came early in the morning to get the room warm for students. During the day, the boys took turns filling the coal bucket at the coal shed behind the school. Many boys volunteered for this chore and took their time, some even sneaking a smoke in the coal shed. But other things are still the same. An original blackboard still has initials carved in it, and the closets where coats and lunches were kept are exactly as they were years ago.

Lunches were brought in either a paper bag or a metal lunch box, which might last for several years. A personal favorite had a picture of Roy Rogers riding Trigger, and it even had a thermos. Lunch might include a bologna sandwich, boiled potato, dill pickle, and on special days, a thermos of homemade soup.

Since there was no water on the grounds, the boys carried water from a near-by house. After it was poured into a large keg at the back of the room, students would use a dipper to get a drink – everyone using the same dipper and no one getting sick!  No water also meant outdoor toilets with a rather unpleasant smell, flies, and even an occassional varmint.

Original Bell at Hopewell School

Original Bell at Hopewell School with picture of school “Whoso Desireth Education, Desireth Knowledge”.

In 1994, former students constructed a brick base with a picture of old Hopewell School engraved on a plague and words that expressed the aim of the school: “Whoso Desireth Education, Desireth Knowledge”.  At the top of the base sets the school bell that called students to school in the morning, and reminded them that it was time to return to the classroom after recess. Students didn’t always stay on the grounds during recess as some went to Gerty’s Store just down the road, or in winter time might be sledding on the neighboring hills of the Cowden family farm. This bell is a beautiful heritage to the people that have received their education here, and also to their children for generations to come.

In spite of all the old-fashioned ways, lessons were learned and life-long friendships were developed. The one-room school was the perfect place to be taught the 4 R’s – Reading, ‘Riting, “Rithmetic…and Respect.

If you would enjoy a trip to the country to see Hopewell School, follow State Route 209 west from Cambridge, Ohio through Browns Heights. After a couple of miles, turn right on State Route 658 and continue until you reach the town of Indian Camp. At the north end of Indian Camp make another right hand turn on Mt. Herman Road. You are there!  

Memories of a One Room School

Long ago in 1906, Hopewell School was built in Indian Camp, Ohio.  Education there continued for nearly fifty years with the last class graduating eighth grade in 1955. One teacher taught eight grades for most of those years and needed lots of patience and planning, as they had to make do with whatever was available.

Most of the one room schools of that time were set on large, hand-hewn, rectangular sandstone blocks with the building being constructed of weather boarding painted white. There were windows on each side, but none in the front or back, and one door in the front.  Behind the school there was a coal house, which kept the supply of coal needed to heat the pot-bellied stove. Of course, there were never any modern conveniences at Hopewell School.  Out back of the school were two outdoor privies, and both two holers.  Could be a very cold trip and seat in the middle of winter.

If they lived within a mile of the school, students walked with their lunch boxes tightly gripped, and that was part of the fun. Older students usually watched out for the safety of the younger ones, and often even helped scare a barking dog away. If the teacher lived in the area, they might pick up a few students on a rainy day.

Every day of school opened with the pledge to the flag and a morning devotion. All subjects were taught to all grades by one teacher.  How busy they must have been! The teacher was very excited when she obtained this special copy machine, a hectograph. After placing the master copy in a pan of gelatin-like substance, several copies could be made quite easily by picking up the ink the master copy left behind.  Now she could make twenty copies of something in five minutes from one original writing.  They would be so amazed at the technology available today! This was a time of learning to help your fellow students also, as students helping students was a big part of the day. Double desks made it easy for one student to sit with another, who might need a little help. With all eight grades in one room, it was also a great opportunity to learn from older students while listening to them recite their schoolwork.

Getting water was a great excuse to get to leave the school ground, and students were seldom in a hurry as they enjoyed talking to neighbors along the way. There was always someone who was kind enough to let children get water from their wells and carry a bucket of it to school.  There it would be placed in a large container at the back of the room that had a spout at the bottom.  Everyone drank from the same dipper, unless they were lucky enough to have their own folding metal cup.

Keeping warm was sometimes a problem as the pot bellied stove seemed to be extra warm on one side and rather cool on the other.  One of the students would go back to the coal house and fill up the bucket to set beside the stove. The boys usually did this and didn’t really mind, as sometimes they would sneak a smoke while they were back there.

Recess was spent playing baseball, hopscotch, Annie Annie Over, Red Rover, and climbing the trees to sit and talk with a friend or watch the games being played. Teachers were usually outside keeping an eye on everyone. The only time recess was inside was during a heavy rain.  In the winter sledding was a popular recess activity on the nearby hills. Once in a while, the teacher would permit some students to go to the General Store in Indian Camp for a little candy or soda treat.

Special programs were a big part of the school and community life.  The Farmers Institute was one special time when students sang and performed skits for the entire community.  Every holiday was an occasion for a school activity. Halloween might involve a costume contest, and Christmas guaranteed a packed house for the program.

After spending eight years at the one room school, the transition to high school was often difficult. The ride on a school bus to Cambridge High School was an adventure in itself.  The early bus was a small one compared to today’s standards, and only held a dozen students. Days were long for many, who would get on the bus at 7:00 after chores were finished, and get home at 5:00 in the evening, just in time to help with evening farm chores.

Memories of the Hopewell One Room School are still fresh in the minds of the students who attended there over the years.  The school still stands today and is now used for Grange, 4-H, homemakers, and church services.  Students still meet once a year to relive old memories and get reacquainted with each other. Ties to classmates remain strong over the years as experiences there helped shape their lives. When the day is over, former students depart with the thought: “God be with you till we meet again.”

The old Hopewell School is located in Guernsey County near Cambridge, Ohio right near the outskirts of Indian Camp.  Take Route 209 West out of Cambridge, then turn right on 658 North.  After about five miles, you should come to the town of Indian Camp.  At the far side of the town, you will find a church and the old one-room school.

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