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Setting up a schoolroom

Neponset Historical Society works toward scholastic dream

Published: Friday, July 18, 2014 1:16 p.m. CDT • Updated: Friday, July 18, 2014 1:19 p.m. CDT

NEPONSET – Memorabilia from the Neponset schools has found a new home at the Neponset Historical Society.

The Neponset Historical Society Board is in the process of developing a “schoolroom” area for the town’s museum, located in the former Bertelsen’s Manufacturing Co. building in downtown Neponset. Earlier this year, the board mailed 175 letters to Neponset School alumni and friends, seeking monetary support for the schoolroom project. The response has been great, board spokesperson Verna Cinnamon said Thursday.

Building a 28-foot-by-28-foot structure to enclose the school room area at the museum was the first step of the project and is now completed, Cinnamon said. The structure itself with its side walls and ceiling was done by a contractor, but volunteers have done the rest of the work, like the dry-walling and painting.

The second step of the project, making an inventory of things to be placed in the school room, is now underway. The board has given alumni members and friends the opportunity to donate items they feel would be appropriate for the schoolroom, and several alumni members have already indicated they have items which could be used in the room. Hopefully, the board will get those items to the museum as soon as possible, she said.

Items already received are some desks, pictures from the English and agriculture classrooms, glass cases and some shelving. Hopefully, someone will give the museum a good chalk board, a large United States or North America map that fits on a roller device, and also a schoolroom clock, to name a few ideas, Cinnamon said. Also, items are wanted from the area country schools as well as the Neponset Grade School and Neponset High School.

The third step in the process is to decide just where to place the inventory within the schoolroom. The board is open for good suggestions and input. Final placement of items will not be done until the board sees what it receives.

The goal is to have the schoolroom done and ready for the public within a month. The historical society board is grateful to those who participated in the plea for financial aid for the project and to those who have helped in other ways to create the Neponset schoolroom display, she said.

The schoolroom is an important part of the town’s history, and graduates have already come to view the new collection and to explain to their children what went on years ago, Cinnamon said.

“So, this is not just for today … it is for the future generations to see and remind them of important things of the past, the kinds of books and artifacts that we learned from,” she said.

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