Monday, October 11, 2010

Dad's one-room school

Do you have a file of your all-time favorite photos? 
I do. And this is the only photo in that file.
I love this image.
Near the farm in Wisconsin... my favorite time of year... full of texture and nostalgia.
It was taken 25 years ago on our Canon AE1 Program.
It's the one-room school that my Dad attended in the 30's.

My Dad and his 4 brothers went through 8th grade in this one-room school,
while his 4 sisters went on to graduate from high school.
My Dad passed away last December at 83 years old,
and would tell us that the demands of farming kept the boys from continuing their education.
We still drive by the Holen School every time we're back home and it's barely standing now.
Randy & I would always dream of buying it, restoring it and making it our summer home.

This classroom photo was taken in the 30's of Holen School. My Dad's siblings are among the children sitting at their desks.

And this is one of the desks that came out of that school,
that my Dad and his siblings spent hours learning to read, write and do arithmetic!
After they closed Holen School in 1955, the desks were most likely made available
to the one-room York School down the road or put in storage.
I attended York School my first grade year in 1963.
They closed that school the following year and made the desks available to the community.
My Mom told me they bought two of the desks for a dollar or two.
Oh the hours I spent pretending on those desks.
In the 60's we were given permission to paint the desks however we wanted.
So us kids haphazardly splattered paint everywhere.
Sorta that hippie, psychedelic look, with groovy pink flowers. Wish I had photos.
Well, little did we know, we were preserving the poor desks.
Had we not piled on the oil-base paint, the desks would not have survived all those years
in our damp, musty basement.

Many years later I hauled this treasure back to Phoenix after one of our visits to the farm.
I had it dipped and restored so my kids could make memories on Grandpa's desk.
And today I dug it out of storage again...
so my granddaughters can start making memories on great-grandpa's school desk.

I'm linking to-


Kathy Grayczyk said...

Beautiful Linda, just beautiful. I have an afghan my mother had made over 30 years ago and it still looks new. I'm not really sentimental but I find myself getting upset with Josh when he just tosses it on the ground. My mother passed away in 98'and this is all I have that was a part of her. It was given to me from a friend who is getting up there, and she chose to give it to me instead of passing it along in the family and I think that's why it means so much to me.

Sharon Larson said...

That's a great picture, Linda. I don't think I've ever seen that one before. Past memories are so important to pass on to following generations. You are a wonderful memory keeper! Thanks for sharing!

Cindy (Applestone Cottage) said...

Hi Linda,
Oh yes, familiar territory!
Dan used to mow the lawn every summer at the York school growing up!
How neat that you have one of the old desks to cherish!

Wendy said...

That is an awesome photo! And it's really great that you have the desks!

Anonymous said...

Linda, I am from West Salem Wisconsin near LaCrosse. Could you tell me the road that the Holen School could be found? I would like to see it and take some photos. thanks