A Pacific Northwest Photography Blog

Meadow School Distgrict #3 - 1888 - Skagit Valley WA

Old one and two-room school houses are a passion of mine.

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Finding and photographing old school houses has been and is a passion of mine.

For many years I have spent time researching, driving and shooting as many of these old one

and two-room school houses as I am able to find around the Pacific Northwest.

They are elusive.

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Rural one and two-room schools were each a ‘district’ unto their own.

Depending upon the area, there might be three or four that would or could be found per township.

Most of these little schools were destroyed literally

and figuratively by the sweep of school district consolidation that occurred during the mid 1940s to 50s.

Which means that nowadays, most of these school houses have long abandoned for six-five to seventy-five years.

That’s a long time for a wood-frame, unattended to structure to stand.

Some were torn down immediately, some moved to a nearby ranch or farm and used for outbuildings or left to decay in place.

Some I have found were partially burnt out or destroyed by livestock or wild infestation.

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I may have mentioned my search methods before, but in case you missed it, here is my work path.

First of course decide the area you want to look for school houses.

Second, go to Metsker Maps in downtown Seattle (you can order maps on line too) and buy a map of the county you choose.

Using the map legend I create a hollow square template (using a piece of manila file folder) cut

to the size of the townships shown on the map (not every map is the same size, even from the same manufacturer).

Next, I spread out the map and start in one corner of the county,

moving my hollow square township template one township/range at a time,

pouring over the roads, looking for markings of old school districts.

Sometimes, I make note of old towns (ghost) and cemeteries too,

they often indicated where pioneer settlements were at one time.

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After all my research comes the fun part, on my travels, I systematically try to locate these schools and places where I might find one.

Sometimes, I score, but most of the time you come up on the spot and there is nothing at all,

but memories floating in the wind

and dust of school days

gone by.

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Here is one school house found by that method in the Skagit Valley west of Mount Vernon.

It is being used as a gift shop at the Christensen Nursery on Best Road.

I loved that it is still useful, full of the sounds of voices

and aging gracefully.

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It’s time for you to enter your photos in ‘Rurality Blog Hop – #9.’ ‘Rurality Blog Hop’ is open to everyone who would like to share something about rural life. The linky will open every Wednesday morning around 09:00 Pacific Time and will close Thursday at midnight.


  1. Consider following me, ‘The View From Right Here‘, in most cases I’ll follow you back.
  2. Consider subscribing to posts from ‘The View From Right Here’ via RSS, via eMail), in most cases I’ll subscribe back.
  3. Please just ONE family friendly post about rural themes per week please.
  • Rural photography, rural life, thrift, pets and livestock, recipes, crafts, etc.
  1. Submit the url of your ‘Rurality Blog Hop,’ blog post, not your main blog url, using the LinkyTools prompt below.
  2. Google+ users – submit the url of your posted photo on G+.
  3. Include the ‘Rurality Blog Hop’ badge (or a text link) in your blog post.
  4. Visit some of other entries, meet some new people and leave encouraging comments.

(I reserve the right to remove any post that is inappropriate and multiple entries from the same blog.)

(Permalink to create your own text link back to this post: http://www.theviewfromrighthere.com/blog/?p=10042)

Rurality Blog Hop #9

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I've been publishing 'The View From Right Here' in one form or another since 2007. I hope you find images you enjoy from my travels around Seattle, Puget Sound and the greater Pacific Northwest, giving you a glimpse of the beautiful region of the United States of America, where I have always lived.
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Madge Bloom
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