Dillon Schoolhouse

When you think of movable schools, you probably think of modular classrooms. Well, think bigger—much bigger. In 1962, workers separated this L-shaped schoolhouse into two pieces, loaded them onto flatbed trucks and moved both from Dillon #3, now at the bottom of Lake Dillon, to LaBonte Street in Dillon.

Built in 1883, this frame schoolhouse, with original belfry and bell, underwent several changes in use—first becoming a church in 1910 and then a museum in 1972. The railroad, which arrived in Dillon #3 prior to the school’s construction, brought “modern” materials such as four-by-four casement windows and pressed tin for the ceiling. A platform in front with curtain enhanced recitations and presentations given by the students.

The schoolroom looks as it might have in 1892. Artifacts include McGuffy desks, Heath readers with hand-crocheted bookmarks, slates and chalk, individual learning stations, 1892 flag, Centennial flag, black celestial globe, kerosene slide projector with glass slides, and sand table. Many other items of historical interest fill the country store room adjacent to the schoolroom, such as blacksmith tools, assay scales, cigar mold and tobacco cutter, and coffee grinder.

The annex to the Schoolhouse Museum houses the Rutledge archives, one of two archive facilities supported by the Historical Society.

Directions: You will find the Schoolhouse Museum and Rutledge Archive Room at 403 LaBonte Street in Dillon.