A Hop into History

Will the Real Gramp Please Stand Up
When we chose the name  “Gramp’s Old School” it was to recognize that my grandfather attended the school and that my father (my son’s grandfather) is saving the school. I also liked it because I think a lot of people had a Gramp or Gram that attended the school, so it’s kind of universal. I realize who’s who has gotten a bit muddled. Hopefully this helps:

Richard Tefft Sr. – also referred to as “Original Gramp” and “Great Grandpa Tefft,” attended the school house in the late 1930’s/early 1940’s

Richard Tefft Jr. – also referred to as “Gramp,” my father and Philip’s grandfather, restoring the school house

A Hop into History
We found a lot of original documents like worksheets, tests, student records, and drawings in the school house. We think they’re super cool and wanted to share them here. We’re still not sure when the school actually closed but we haven’t found anything dated later than around 1944. If you remember this was our first look at Gramp’s Old School.

IMG_2898Opening the door to history

There were tons of old papers left just scattered and piled on the floor. The condition of these documents was terrible (torn, faded, illegible, and covered in dirt and pxxp).  We saved as much as we could. I literally combed through wheelbarrows full of debris to pull out whatever caught my eye.  Luke Tefft then took over this part of the project and organized a lot of the papers and cleaned them up. Check it out! We even found a few school papers from the Original Gramp!

IMG_3448yep they had those standardized tests even back then

img_3453-e1512090869504.jpgStudents from 1940

IMG_3449We even found health records

IMG_3423Yep, there were dental records

IMG_3455Good job Gramp!

Fate was Calling Our Name
The one thing we found that is absolutely priceless and that almost stopped our hearts is a piece of artwork signed by the Original Gramp. It survived on the floor of the school house since the 1940’s! We found very little student artwork and I just happened to pull this out of a pile of debris because I saw the bright colors. The subject matter is open to interpretation, but we love it!

IMG_3065Artwork by the Original Gramp, Richard Tefft Sr.

Next Week
Gramp will guest blog next week! He’ll be sharing some original architectural elements of the school house and a bit of research. For now, I can’t resist sharing this pic of Gramp as a baby with his momma Alberta Metcalfe Tefft.

IMG_3409Gramp circa 1960


8 thoughts on “A Hop into History

  1. Shirley L. Dewey December 1, 2017 — 2:27 am

    Loved it keep the post coming Ron and I enjoy all that you write. It is just something the things that have survived the years of despair the school has endured. I’m as I have posted before so glad to see something old come alive again. Love it, Love it, Love it.


  2. Wow, how exciting to find papers and artwork after all these years! Love reading your adventure! To think that the construction of that little schoolhouse outlasted all the weather extremes and storms and protected valuable treasures for your family.


    1. My parents live just down the road from the school house. It’s crazy to think all that history was just sitting in there less than half a mile away!


  3. I don’t think finding Gramps treasures was a coincidence… he is speaking to you from up above and letting you know how proud he is of all of you!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Since Greenwich voted on June 24, 1944 to centralize (vote outcome 337:84) and you found nothing dated later than that year, I’m thinking that school house was one of the first to close. Not all of the little school houses in the district closed immediately. They expected everyone to be brought to Greenwich for schooling within two years as there were 29 district school houses to be centralized and when complete, Greenwich would be the largest established in this section of the state.


    1. Thanks for the info! That’s a lot of school houses!


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