One-room school­house in Pan­dora gets his­tor­i­cal marker

Dayton Daily News - - DAILY LAW JOURNAL - By Jennifer Peryam

Bri­den­baugh PAN­DORA —

One-Room School House in Pan­dora re­ceived a his­tor­i­cal marker plaque from Ohio His­tory Con­nec­tion dur­ing a cer­e­mony Fri­day.

One-room schools were com­monly named for peo­ple who fur­nished land for the build­ing. Michael Bri­den­baugh, who set­tled in Ri­ley Twp. in 1835, do­nated a hal­facre of land to the Ri­ley Town­ship school board in 1873. He was a Put­nam County Com­mis­sioner, a town­ship trustee and school board mem­ber for the one­room school­house that is at 14022 Road 6 north of Pan­dora at the in­ter­sec­tion of Roads 6 and M-6.

The first school in District 3 Ri­ley Twp. on the site was a wooden struc­ture built-in 1878. It was re­placed by the brick build­ing in 1889. The school op­er­ated un­til 1927, af­ter which the district was con­sol­i­dated and stu­dents at­tended classes in nearby Pan­dora. In 1927, the school closed and con­sol­i­dated to Pan­dora.

Dale Bri­den­baugh owns the one-room school­house and is re­spon­si­ble for the school’s restora­tion. He said his great-grand­fa­ther’s son John bought back the school­house af­ter it closed and in 1995 restora­tion on the school­house be­gan that took two years to com­plete. Dale’s fa­ther War­ren and his four un­cles all at­tended the one­room school.

“We live in a chang­ing world, and it is good for peo­ple to be able to go back and see what a one-room school was like,” Dale Bri­den­baugh said. The school­house has a chalk­board, old base­ball mitts, lunch pails, a pump or­gan, school bell and 40 wooden school desks that Dale pur­chased from Amish schools.

“It is an honor to be rec­og­nized. There were win­dows broke out that were re­placed and we kept the orig­i­nal floor,” Dale Bri­den­baugh said.

On Aug. 5, 1997, the school re-opened for a reunion with 11 for­mer stu­dents at­tend­ing as well as the last teacher, Mil­dred Ge­orge. In 2000 the school re­ceived the Ohio His­toric Preser­va­tion Merit Award from the Ohio His­tor­i­cal So­ci­ety. In 2004 it was nom­i­nated by the Ohio His­tor­i­cal So­ci­ety to the Na­tional Reg­istry and in 2005 was placed on the Na­tional Reg­istry.

A fire oc­curred at the school­house in 2014 that was started by a wood-burn­ing stove in the school.

An­drew Ver­hoff, for­mer Ot­tawa res­i­dent and team lead for Lo­cal His­tory Ser­vices, Ohio His­tory Con­nec­tion, at­tended Fri­day’s cer­e­mony to help un­veil the his­tor­i­cal marker plaque. Ohio His­tory Con­nec­tion is a non­profit or­ga­ni­za­tion char­tered in 1885 with a mis­sion to pre­serve and share the state’s his­tory.

Rose Ver­hoff, An­drew’s mother and Put­nam County his­to­rian, filled out the ap­pli­ca­tion for the school­house to re­ceive the his­tor­i­cal plaque.

Dale Bri­den­baugh ap­plied for the marker in 2018 and there were 64 marker ap­pli­ca­tions that year.

“This ap­pli­ca­tion stood out be­cause Ohio His­tory Con­nec­tion wanted to honor the restora­tion of this school be­cause a lot of th­ese build­ings don’t ex­ist any­more,” An­drew Ver­hoff said. He said the his­tor­i­cal marker is the fifth in Put­nam County with mark­ers also lo­cated at Our Lord’s Park in Ot­tawa, Columbus Grove Pool, Ot­tawa Water­works Park and a marker in Kal­ida for painter Emer­son Burkhart. There are over 1,750 his­tor­i­cal mark­ers in Ohio, ac­cord­ing to An­drew Ver­hoff.

Dur­ing the cer­e­mony, Dale Bri­den­baugh’s great-grand­chil­dren wore school dresses from the 1800s and led at­ten­dees in the Pledge of Al­le­giance as Su­san Short, Dale’s daugh­ter, held a flag. Gary Bri­den­baugh, Dale’s son, read a reading called “Do You Have a Lit­tle Red School­house Safe In Your Mem­ory?”


The great-grand­chil­dren of Dale Bri­den­baugh, owner of the one-room school in Pan­dora: Piper Kosch, Alexis and Hailey Core, Paisely and Khloe Kosch and Connor Core.

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