Totem Pole Tales-The Rowe School, Carmel (Faircloth) Dunham, May 6, 1989
Submitted by Nute Chapman
From Onaway Outlook June 22, 2012

Caption#1: THE ROWE SCHOOL 1935-36 with students and teacher. Front row from left, are Earl Brady, Virginia Dunbar, Hilda Brady,
Gertrude Madden, Calvin Madden, Bob Gray, Jim Barber and Eugene Buck.  Second row from left, Dale Barber, Ethel Brady, 
Lorena Madden, Irene Brady, Junior Dunbar, Jean Robinson, June Brady, Ruth Brady and Billy Rowe.  Third row from left, Lester 
Berends, teacher Carmel Faircloth, Glee Wheeler, Junior Madden and Raymond Rowe.
width="600" Caption#2: The Rowe School in the mid 70s.
width="600" The Rowe School was located in North Allis Township, Sec 29. T35N. R.2E. on Twin School Road about one-half mile east off M-211.
When the Rowe School closed the school and land went back to the Vermilya family who had bought the land. They put grain bins in the buildings and used it for many years.
My memory of this school is finding a Walking Liberty Silver fifty-cent piece while working the school grounds with my new metal detector. I found it near the flagpole. I often wondered who the owner was.
I talked to some of the Rowe family several years ago ands showed them where the school was located.
The following is a letter from a former teacher at the Rowe School, Carmel Dunham.
Dear Nute Chapman,
You were asking for information about country schools. I taught the Rowe School from the fall of 1933 through 1936. We had all eight grades. The school was located on the Twin School Highway about a quarter of a mile east of M-211. It was torn down about 1983 or 1984, and is now part of the Vermilya farm.
I had eight grades. I built the fire in the morning, pumped a pail of water for drinking, put the flag on the flagpole and rang the bell. I also cleaned the schoolroom after the children left. The seventh-and eighth-graders had to pass a test at the end of the year at Rogers City in order to go on to high school. The county commissioner (Miss Caldwell) visited our school a couple times a year.
There were three schools in the district under the supervision of five board members, the Mike Rowe School, the 4-Mile School at the corner of M-211 and North Allis Road and the Gilbert School, which is farther east of M-211 on the North Allis Road. Berneita (Rowe) Wheeler taught the Gilbert School and Marvel Lefler taught the 4-Mile School. Marvel bought a horse and rode it to school, so I rode my riding horse (Basil) with her. Basil always found a way to get out before school was out and I had to walk home.
Clyde Smith was teaching the Twin School which is in Waverly Township, Cheboygan County at the corner of Twin School Highway and Black River Road. He is deceased now but I wanted to mention him.
For one of our field trips each year, we walked behind the school a short ways. The children would agree on "the" tree and the eighth grade boys would cut it down. We would take it back to the school and decorate for our Christmas tree. We always had a program at Christmas time, and every parent came. We also had a program of some kind at Halloween and a box social to raise money dishes for hot lunches. The eighth-grade girls would start the soup, cocoa or whatever while I was finishing the class I was teaching.
Hope this gives you some idea of how the country schools were operating back in the 1930s. After my four children were attending school, I went back to teaching. I took night classes, summer school, and correspondence courses. I got my degree and my master's and retired with 30 years of teaching. I will be at my home on Twin School Highway quite a bit this summer if you wish to ask any questions. (The Old Faircloth place across from Edith Johnston)
Yours Truly,
Carmel (Faircloth) Dunham
-Onaway Outlook, June 22, 2012, p.3. Retyped by J. Anderson.

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