The story of Montana's one-room schoolhouses, as recollected and recounted by those most intimately connected to those places, is the story of the American frontier and the high value placed on education by those who came to homestead, mine, or work the railroads. It is a story of the Western spirit and of a culture marked by tenacity and endurance. These stories - told by students and teachers, many of whom are now in their eighties or nineties - tell of adventures traveling to and from school, the school day, recess games, family life, daily chores, and above all, the sense of community, as defined by these iconic humble schoolhouses. Their voices share memories and perspectives about a way of life, gone for the most part, and breathe life into these visions of rural heritage.
The preservation of one-room schoolhouses is important, as they are among Montana's first frontier structures. These treasures inform us about ourselves our history and our culture through the people who learned and taught in them.
One hundred percent of the net proceeds of this book will be donated to the Preserve Montana Fund, a campaign of collaboration between the Montana Preservation Alliance, the Montana History Foundation, and the National Trust for Historic Preservation. This donation will serve to create a challenge grant, earmarked for Montana's endangered one-room schoolhouses.