One room schoolhouses were once an integral part of life in rural Ontario. These schools provided a space for public gatherings and events. In some cases, they even served as a place of worship. Construction of these schools was a community project, and when completed, they made a much-celebrated addition to any district.
This schoolhouse replicates as closely as possible S.S. (School Section) #1 Derby, the 1880s brick schoolhouse built by John Middlebro' and Sons. Moreston's version, however, has a few modern amenities such as in-floor heating and a full basement.
The schoolhouse was a joint project of the Retired Teachers of Ontario and the Grey County Retired Women Teacher's Association who held many fundraising activities toward the project. Construction, led by staff and volunteers, began in 2007. Construction technology students from Saugeen District Secondary School, supervised by teacher Bud Halpin, framed, and clad the building. One of the final steps was the installation of the school’s bell tower, as shown in this video. The schoolhouse officially opened on Canada Day 2010.
The building is now used for educational programming, special events, performances, and meetings. It is furnished with vintage school-related artefacts to recreate the appearance of a 1920s rural schoolroom.