One-room school open to visitors

Staff Writer
Echo Pilot
The historic Old Brown’s Mill School in Kauffman is open each weekend in July and August. Volunteers welcome visitors from 1 to 4 p.m. each Saturday and Sunday.

The Old Brown's Mill School Museum, a memorial to the one-room schools of Franklin County, is open to the public each Saturday and Sunday in July and August from 1 to 4 p.m. through Sunday, Aug. 29. The museum, where a visitor can gain a perspective into the beginning of public education in Pennsylvania 175 years ago, it is located just off U.S. 11 north of Greencastle in the village of Kauffman.

Admission for tours is free, but donations will be accepted to assist in upkeep of the school. Two volunteers from the Franklin County Chapter of the Pennsylvania Association of School Retirees are in attendance to assist visitors.

The Old Brown's Mill School was constructed in 1836 when 51 subscribers contributed the needed funds for the structure on land donated by Lazarus Brown. It served the community until 1921 when a consolidated building was erected nearby.

The school was restored in 1935 and dedicated in October of the same year as a memorial to the rapidly-vanishing one-room schools of the county. More than 7,000 pupils, teachers and other interested citizens contributed to the cost of restoration by the Old Brown's Mill School Memorial Association.

In 1962 the school property was deeded to the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission.

On Oct. 19, 2002, the school was sold by the Pennsylvania Historic and Museum Commission to the Kittochtinny Historical Society. The transaction was made possible through a gift from Thomas G. and Nancy H. Burkey and family of Chambersburg in memory of the Honorable Enos H. Horst and his wife, Mildred Sheller Horst. He served as state representative from 1955-1967. She once taught in a one room school. The society maintains and operates the museum.

The museum contains pictures, furniture, books, records and relics and other mementos of the early education era.