Outhouses Need to Be Cleaned– Conditions of Our Rural School– 1897



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Screenshot from the Report of the Minister of Education 1889–F. L. M i c h e l l , P. S. Inspector

May 28, 1897 Almonte Gazette


S.S. No. 12, Lanark (James).—A good building on an excellent site. The room needs cleaning and the outhouses, especially the woodshed, need repairing. School work greatly improved, but still inferior in some subjects. Order and discipline good.

S.S. No. 3, Ramsay (Union Hall).— One of the neatest and prettiest school properties in the county. The trustees and teacher seem determined to keep the school in a front rank. The school Walls have been neatly papered (the only school in the district thus finished). This together with a full supply of good pictures presented by the parents gives the room a comfortable home-like appearance. Contact with neatness and beauty must exercise a beneficial influence on the formation of character. Thanks to trustees and teacher for their pioneer effort towards a more cheerful state of things in the school room. The teacher is energetic and enthusiastic, and his school ranks among the best in the inspectorate.

S.S No. 1, Pakenham (Cedar Hill).— An excellent building on an ample site. School dirty and yard overgrown in places with weeds. Outhouses need repairs and cleaning. Some of the desks are broken. This state of things is not usual in this section. The teacher, though without previous experience, is doing very fair work and will doubtless have better results at next visit.


S.S No. 2, Pakenham (Sadler’s).— Accommodation excellent except floor. The blackboards need renewing. Excellent yard, but outbuilding dirty. The school is in charge of a teacher of wide and successful experience, and the standing is good in all classes. A first-class school.

S.S No. 3, Pakenham (Ellis)—Excellent school house and site. The floor is worn out and the fence very unsubstantial. Outhouses must be cleaned. Here also, an experienced and energetic teacher is in charge, and though the full programme is taught, the work is well done. The grading excellent in standing, order and discipline.

S.S. No. 5, Pakenham (Scott’s)—A commodious building, but dirty and out of repair. Blackboards bad and new window blinds needed. The fences are in a disgraceful condition ; no pump and general neglect apparent. As this is one of the wealthiest sections in the county, such a condition of things is inexcusable. No grant can be paid unless the necessary improvements are attended to. The school work is exceedingly well done and the standing very satisfactory. Though the attendance is large the order is excellent.

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Screenshot from the Report of the Minister of Education 1889–F. L. M i c h e l l , P. S. Inspector


S.S No. 6, Pakenham (Doyle’s).— An excellent new school on a well chosen site. Out-house needs repairing and cleaning. School work, except in grammar, is good, The attendance in some cases has been irregular.

S. S. No. 7, Pakenham (Bellamy’s Road).—Building greatly improved, but it needs sheeting within. The yard is not fenced as the law requires. The school work is below the average and the classification is very unsatisfactory. A regular certificated teacher must be engaged in future. The increase in attendance is phenomenal.

S. S. No. 8, Pakenham (Lowe’s). A good building, but in need of cleaning and painting. The yard should be levelled and large stones removed. The standing is fair—writing, arithmetic metic and literature below the average, owing in many cases to irregularity.

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Screenshot from the Report of the Minister of Education 1889–F. L. M i c h e l l , P. S. Inspector

S. S. No. 11, Ramsay (Appleton) An excellent brick schoolhouse of two divisions, but getting out of repair through continued neglect. Floor will soon need renewing. Desks cumbersome and uncomfortable. School should be reseated with modern desks. Outhouses need cleaning. The attendance is increasing and the school work well done in the senior division and fairly done in the junior. The order is generally satisfactory. Good work should be done here this year.

S. S. No. 12, Ramsay (Simpsons). A very comfortable brick school on a good site. The walls must be repaired and interior repaired and cleaned. Floor, bad in places. Gates, need attention and outhouses must be cleaned. The school attendance increasing and the work exceptionally well done. The teacher is earnest and competent. Trustees act wisely in securing tried, successful teachers, since loss of time and opportunity must often result when the opposite course is pursued.

F. L. M i c h e l l , P. S. Inspector




S.S. No. 1 Pakenham-The One Room Schoolhouse

Rural Schools: Ramsay Township etc, Pages of the Past, County of Lanark, Ontario Canada”.  To purchase this book and others, go to www.archiveslanark.ca .



Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read.

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in Hometown News and now in The Townships Sun

About lindaseccaspina

Linda Knight Seccaspina was born in Cowansville, Quebec about the same time as the wheel was invented and the first time she realized she could tell a tale was when she got caught passing her smutty stories around in Grade 7 at CHS by Mrs. Blinn. When Derek "Wheels" Wheeler from Degrassi Jr. High died in 2010, Linda wrote her own obituary. Some people said she should think about a career in writing obituaries. Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa from 1976-1996. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off she finally found her calling. Is it sex drugs and rock n' roll you might ask? No, it is history. Seeing that her very first boyfriend in Grade 5 (who she won a Twist contest with in the 60s) is the head of the Brome Misissiquoi Historical Society and also specializes in local history back in Quebec, she finds that quite funny. She writes every single day and is also a columnist for Hometown News and Screamin's Mamas. She is a volunteer for the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum, an admin for the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page, and a local guest speaker. She has been now labelled an historian by the locals which in her mind is wrong. You see she will never be like the iconic local Lanark County historian Howard Morton Brown, nor like famed local writer Mary Cook. She proudly calls herself The National Enquirer Historical writer of Lanark County, and that she can live with. Linda has been called the most stubborn woman in Lanark County, and has requested her ashes to be distributed in any Casino parking lot as close to any Wheel of Fortune machine as you can get. But since she wrote her obituary, most people assume she's already dead. Linda has published six books, "Menopausal Woman From the Corn," "Cowansville High Misremembered," "Naked Yoga, Twinkies and Celebrities," "Cancer Calls Collect," "The Tilted Kilt-Vintage Whispers of Carleton Place," and "Flashbacks of Little Miss Flash Cadilac." All are available at Amazon in paperback and Kindle. Linda's books are for sale on Amazon or at Wisteria · 62 Bridge Street · Carleton Place, Ottawa, Canada, and at the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum · 267 Edmund Street · Carleton Place, Ottawa, Canada--Appleton Museum-Mississippi Textile Mill and Mill Street Books and Heritage House Museum and The Artists Loft in Smith Falls.

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