Built 1880, Rebuilt 1916
This is the 30th in a series of articles sponsored by the Oconto County Teachers Association to promote better public relations in the schools of our county.
The first school house in District One was erected some years before the Chicago and North-Western Railroad was built through the village in 1871. The exact date is not known. The first school was located directly across the road from the present depot on property now owned by Frank Schultz.
The second school, a brick structure, was built on the site of the present two room graded school about 1880. At one time more than 100 pupils were enrolled at the old brick school. The schoolmaster at that time was Jim Monihan.
During that time Little Suamico was a bustling mill town. One of the. entertainment highlights of the village was provided by the Society on Friday nights at the school. The Society was really a Community Club in which the millworkers cooperated with the teacher in putting on these programs for the entertainment of the people. Some of the mill men were quite talented as shown by their singing, harmonica playing, acting plays, and various other numbers on the programs. Community singing was also popular.
In 1916 the old brick school was replaced by the present two room graded school. Some of the bricks of the old school were used in the chimney of the present structure. The hardwood flooring in the North room also was salvaged from the old school. The school board at that time consisted of R. O. Wedgwvod, clerk; Hans Bergh, director; and Ben Kussow, treasurer. The first teachers in the new school were Belle Krause, principal, and Mae Anderson, primary teacher.
In 1942 the enrollment became so small that only one teacher was hired. It continued operating as a one-room school till the fall of 1953 when the Primary Room was reopened with Miss Rose Deprey of Brookside as teacher.
In recent years many improvements have been made. The front yard has been filled in, playground equipment, bicycle rack, and steel flagpole has been provided. Other improvements include a new oil furnace, new well and water system, thirty new desks, and two steel filing cabinets. A contract for installing new indoor toilets this summer has been let. The purchase of another acre of ground east of the school provides ample play space for the pupils. The school has a new record player and records.
The Mothers club of the school is very active. The club has provided the school with a Movie Projector, card tables, folding chairs, dishes, and coffee maker. It also furnished material for fixing the south room in the basement. It purchases holiday treats for the children and ice cream for the annual School Picnic.
Several excursions were planned and carried out during the past year. The upper grades participated in the Dewey Tour to Madison. A November outing to Oconto included visits to places of industrial and civic interest. Places visited were the Fire Department. the Post Office, the Bank, the Shoe Factory and the Florists.
In March the Primary department had a very interesting trip to Green Bay. They went on the Greyhound Bus and returned on the 400 Train. In Green Bay they appeared on the WBAY-TV program. Other highlights were eating at a cafeteria, riding a city bus, a trip up an escalator and a movie.
During the month of April the pupils participated in the Professor Gordon music festival at Shawano and a Conservation Tour.
The present school board is Willard Allen: clerk Harold Marks, director; and Giles Grosse, treasurer. Mrs Walter Zaddack is the principal.