This school section served children from the community of Greenwood in the northwest corner of Westmeath Township. In her 1984 book “The History of the Corporation of Westmeath Township” Evelyn Moore Price draws heavily on the “Greenwood Scrapbook” in her summarizing of this school:
This school building is now a private home on Greenwood Road #40. The Greenwood School’s early days are well documented in The Greenwood Scrapbook 1937, compiled and developed by the school children under the supervision of their then teacher Violet Montgomery. All the school-related material is presented here. Some of the old photographs had deteriorated to some degree. They are presented here with captions as typed on an old typewriter. Other writings have been retyped onto this website to make it easier to read. For more “general interest” items from that scrapbook go to “Greenwood Scrapbook 1937” on the Greenwood webpage.
The pioneer school of Greenwood built in 1855 was situated on the line between the farms now owned by Robert Wilson and James McDonough. It was a small log structure with few of our modern conveniences. The older pupils were supplied with desks but the junior pupils, until able to write, sat on long benches. It even lacked the common convenience of a bell to call the class to order. The first teacher engaged was Miss Jane Horricks, whose daughter Mr. Robert Wilson, to whom we are indebted for most of this history, resides in the section. Some years later this piece of ground, that was very wet, was traded with Mike McDonough for a piece of higher ground where the present school stands. A frame school was erected and in 1885 the council was petitioned to enlarge the section. Lots 22, 23, 24, and 25 then belonging to S.S. No. 1 were added to No. 9.
In 1888 the school was clapboarded and the following year painted red. After the enlargement of the section, it was found necessary to enlarge the school and in 1892 an addition of 12 feet was put on it. Later in 1897 a porch was built to the front of the building and this school remained until 1924 when the present school was built. The old school grounds contained only a quarter of an acre but when the new school was built additional land was obtained from James McDonough to make one acre, in exchange for the old school building. George Thrasher, Robert Wilson, James McDonough and S.S. Robinson were appointed a building committee to assist the school board, made up of Water Thrasher, John Fletcher and Robert Carnegie to look after the building of the new school.
Miss Charlotte Follis was the first teacher engaged in the new school of 1924. Following her was Miss Janet Ferguson, Miss Mabel Gillie and Miss Violet A. Montgomery. In the year 1927 Miss Mabel Gillie began Household Science. Mr. Walter Thrasher loaned his oil stove and hot luncheon was served at the noon hour. The children provided their own dishes. In the year 1919 a concert was put on at the school and precedes used to purchase a coal-oil stove. In the same year the basement was divided and a kitchen partitioned off. The following year chemical closets were installed in the hall of the school. In 1929 a fence was built along the front of the school grounds.
In the year 1931 the improvements on the school grounds began. One hundred Norway Spruce trees were gotten from a Toronto Nursery and planted along the north, north-east and north-west sides of the school ground to make a windbreak. The ground was prepared by Carl Fletcher and the pupils planted the tees. In 1931 William Wilson, John Fletcher and Tom Graham built up a flower bed on the upper rocky knoll on the grounds. This remained for two years and in 1934 a terraced rockery was built in its place. The building of the rockery cost $7.98 and the care of the garden during the summer $3.20. A grant of $9.00 was received from the government. The first year money was not available to purchase flowers for the new rockery, but many people came to our assistance with liberal donations. Those who liberally donated were Miss Nellie Beatty and Mrs. R.C. Coxworth of Pembroke, Mrs. John Fletcher and Mrs. Ernest Wilson of Greenwood and Miss V. Montgomery. In the same year the posts along the front were painted green and white and the grass around the school kept out with a borrowed lawnmower. Birdhouses were made by the pupils and put up on the grounds. In 1937 a prize of shrubs given by Mr. Norman Campbell the Public School Inspector for the most improvements and best kept grounds was won. In Coronation Year -1937- the pupils planted trees and named them after members of the Royal Family. A cedar hedge was planted along the front of the school by Lyle Graham, Lyle Lamke, Ivan Lebeau and Alvin Carnegie and named it Windsor Hedge. The students in third and fourth classes made a bed around the flagpole and planted geraniums and coleus. The school purchased a lawn mower and provision was made for the care of the grounds for the summer months. In 1937 the School Board redecorated the inside of the school and painted the roof. In 1939 a new fence was built along the side of the school grounds and posts painted. In 1952 the school was redecorated in shades of green and electricity was installed. In 1953 an electric clock was purchased. This same year curtains for the stage were bought. In 1955 book shelves and a cupboard were built into the back wall. In 1959 an oil furnace was installed in the school. In the same year two swings were put up on the playground and in 1960 three more swings were added.
In 1959 Carl Fletcher served as secretary. Elmer Whitmore served as chairman and the trustees were Wallace Carnegie and Neil Thrasher. In 1960 Alex Bathgate served as secretary. The chairman was Wallace Carnegie and the trustees were Neil Thrasher and Garwin Wright.
NOTE: Many of the captions with these class pictures, as typed on an old typewriter, don’t say where the listing of names begins – a good guess would be Back Row L to R, then working towards front by rows, always L to R. If someone has a more correct idea of the correct sequencing, please contact on Submissions Page.
No listing of 1921 class names was included in the Greenwood Scrapbook.
These 1938 pictures were taken by A. J. Hamilton who was once a pupil and then a teacher at the Greenwood School.
King George VI and Queen Elizabeth were the first reigning sovereigns to visit the Dominion of Canada, they left England on May 6th, 1939. The ocean trip was delayed by icebergs and fog. They were expected to arrive in Quebec on May 15th but the foggy weather delayed them to May 16th. They were at Quebec for a few days and then came on to Ottawa.
The Kiwanis Club from Pembroke organized a special train to take the people from Pembroke and the district lying around to Ottawa. There were about seventeen pupils from our school. We got on at Meath about 6:17 a.m. There were abut sixty people got on there. We had to wear a badge with our name, the school and the teacher’s name on it to get on the train. We arrived in Ottawa about 10 a.m. We got off at the Prince of Wales Crossing and had to march about a mile to the place where we were to stand.
When we reached our place we had to wait about fifteen minutes. The procession came around a bend and came unto us very suddenly. First came guards mounted on horses of a chocolate brown colour and all the same size. The guards wore navy blue suits trimmed with gold. Next came the King and Queen in the royal coach drawn by two teams of horses the same colour as those the guards had. The Queen was dressed in mauve and the King wore a morning suit of striped trousers and black coat with a high silk hat, The Queen smailed and waved while the King saluted to the cheering crowds. Behind the King and Queen came other government officials in cars. During the procession cadets lined up in front of the people to keep them in place.
After the procession passed we ate lor lunch back of where we stood and then marched back to the Prince of Wales Crossing where we got on the Train.
Written by Eileen Robinson