The first school was a one-room school located where Clarence MCCONNELL’S business now stands. The first teacher was Ira S. COLE and the first two pupils were W.S. GORDON and Lorell COLE. The school was in this location because the saloon was still across the track and the distance between the two was within the law, but after the saloon was moved up town, the school had to be located farther south. The first school building is the front part of the MCCONNELL Implement building.
The second school was built in 1898, just about where the newest portion of our present building stands. This school had four rooms although not all the rooms were used immediately. The large upstairs was used as an auditorium. Later the faculty was increased to four. In 1905 the school had its first piano purchased by F.R. GEYERMAN to be paid for by various entertainments at the school. In 1908 the school had what was called “Patrons Day” similar to our Parent-Teachers Conferences where work was exhibited, problems discussed, after which doughnuts and coffee were served. Principal Chas. J. ANDERSON was instrumental in making this day possible. When the school was built the doors were made to swing in which caused many accidental bumps, swing out. A fire escape was put on the back side of the building in 1908. The grading at this time was interesting. The grade ‘A’ meant perfectly acceptable to teachers; ‘B’ passable; ‘C’ and below not acceptable to teachers and should not be to parents!
In 1911 one hundred twenty-six feet of Hyloplate blackboard and a new 18-inch globe were added. The cost of the globe alone was $30.
In 1914 petitions were circulated to call a meeting to look into the building of a new school. A vote was taken which gave the school board power to bond the district for 15-per-cent of the assessed valuation about $25,000. H. Edward WALKER of Minneapolis was the architect and bids were received by Mr. L.E. JOHNSON, Clerk. When the new school was completed it had a new auditorium which would seat three hundred people. Four sets of scenery and curtains were purchased also two hundred fifty chairs. This auditorium is our present band and lunchroom combined. In 1916 Edward MANUEL was the first four-year high school graduate. High school and grade students gave a banquet honoring him at the auditorium. A table was set for thirty-one guests with a center-piece of white roses. Games were played until eleven o’clock when a two-course supper was served.
After much publicity and discussion for consolidation with rural districts those in opposition won by a majority of thirty votes. Later on consolidation carried. In 1916 the old school building was torn down. The houses owned by Mr. George WAKEMAN and Fred KOSTER contain its lumber.
In 1917 a large flag, ten by fifteen feet, was made by the Brewster ladies for the school. A prize given for the best garden display that year was won by Christine LIEN.
During these many years, highlights of entertainment were the plays put on by the faculty members, all proceeds used for the betterment of the school’s facilities. In this year a Home Ec and Ag Department were added. An extra plot of land used for the Ag class was purchased which is now our present ball diamond.
In 1921 Prof. MORRIS wrote a minstrel show put on by the pupils depicting all local men famous for their good, bad or home brew qualities.
In 1917 the graduating class consisted of three – Otis WICKLUND, Felix BEECHAM and Dan MCCAB.
In 1923, the Brewster B.B. boys were third in the state tournament. In 1924 second in the tournament, Alfred NELSON and Jack MESSMAN were picked for the first all-state team and Roy NELSON for second.
In 1926 both Brewster boys and girls teams won the county tournament. The Minneapolis Journal carried a picture of our girl’s team. The boys won the first state tournament in Brewster’s history. The team was SORENSON, GRIER, NELSON, MESSMAN, KOSTOR, O. WAKEMAN, Vernon WAKEMAN and Sherman HARTMAN. Hans NELSON was high point man of the state and SORENSON was picked as all-state guard.
In 1925 a P.T.A. was organized with L.E. JOHNSON, president; Mrs. James GARDNER, vice president; Claudine DALEY, secretary. A membership fee of fifty cents was collected.
In 1926 high school students purchased all textbooks. A tuition was also charged to grade pupils outside the district at $3.00 per month. The district had applied for a place on the state high school list.
In 1937 a school patrol was organized.
In 1938 bonds were voted for the new auditorium and in February of 1939 the new $40,000 auditorium gymnasium was dedicated. The bleachers hold about three hundred fifty people; five hundred new folding chairs were purchased with storage room under the bleachers. The main stage is well equipped with curtains, colored lights both overhead and below and burgundy velour curtains with gold centers.
The first school annual was published in 1939.
In 1941 were the first football games played under lights.
In 1938 the alumni association was formed. After plans were made a banquet and homecoming were held. The following were the first elected officers: Janet KRUKEMEYER, president; Mrs. John EBERT, secretary; Leone KNUTH, treasurer.
In 1947 the school board purchased a house to be occupied by the school superintendent. Until the house was ready, TRUDEL’S lived in the largest house in town – the school!
In 1951 after two years of trying to complete consolidation, a bond was voted to build the present new addition of two grade rooms, office and storage, agriculture and science laboratory and a modern Home Economics Department. The present school, with all its facilities is in a crowded condition at present. We also have a kindergarten in spring session. This was begun in 1955. This year there are thirty-seven enrolled in it and one instructor. In the grade school two hundred six pupils with seven teachers. In the high school one hundred seventy-two pupils and ten teachers. The school secretary at the present time is Mrs. Donald BERREAU who is completing her sixth consecutive year. P.J. TRUDEL has been superintendent since 1947. The present high school principal is Ingvald ROSSING and grade principal Beth TRUNK. The school board members are: Harry MCCUEN, chairman; William HOGAN, clerk; and members Vince COTTER, Joe SMITH, Bernard HARTMAN and Wilber MALENKE.