Here are some glimpses from inside the Collins Schoolhouse on SR 120 in northeastern Indiana. After being used from 1877 to 1943, it stood vacant for 20 years. Then June Collins began its restoration.
More desks fill the room now than when it was operating, to accomodate the number of students who come on tours. Miss Collins’s nieces and nephews say there used to be an open space between the two sides, where activities and games took place.
“It’s not the books that are on the shelves, but what the teachers are, themselves,” according to an old poem. Visitors here see an array of vintage books.
The original Google: a large dictionary sat on a stand for students to reference.
Hornbooks, which preceded textbooks, displayed the alphabet and the Lord’s Prayer. They were covered with a thin layer of cow horn to protect the surface.
The school’s weathervane now overlooks its interior.
The daily schedule was all about reading!
You could get a drink of water from the stoneware cooler, or lunch from your tin pail. For the other kind of break, the privy was out back and remains there, still fully functional.
Photo of students in first through eighth grades in the school’s heyday.
A complete record of teachers of the school is posted on a wall.
Miss Collins hit the nail on the head. Thank a teacher for where you are today!
The Collins School is open to the public on Sundays 2 to 5 p.m. during the summer beginning June 5. A traditional ice cream social will take place there on July 31.