Fall Brings to Mind School Days

Robwood Mountain SchoolEven if you don’t have school age kids, chances are you are well aware that the new school year is either set to begin or just underway.  A property under conservation easement with the Northcentral Pennsylvania Conservancy is the site of a former one room school house.  It seemed like the perfect time (and season) to share that story.

The Robwood Mountain conservation easement is almost all woodland now, but 100 years ago almost every acre that could have been farmed or pastured was without trees. Stone walls and old foundations speak to the agricultural community on the mountaintop. But life was hard; it is said that the only crops that could be regularly grown were potatoes and buckwheat and much of the land was devoted to pasture. And so the families gradually moved away to make new lives elsewhere, their farms allowed to revert to forest and the transition helped in places by the current landowner and his father who planted trees in some of the old fields. The photo above, taken in 1914, is of the students at the Robwood Mountain school – the school stood on the protected property along the road that the families traveled as they abandoned their farms.

Don’t you wonder what happened to those kids?