Thanks to Wally Stubgen for his e-mail inquiry, information and photographs.

The year 1965 brought to a close an era in West Nissouri Township. The last remaining one-room schools in the township were closed permanently. Five years earlier, in 1960, one-room schools in the southern part of the township had closed with the opening of Leesboro Central School. In October 1965, the remaining schools closed as Plover Mills Central School opened in the north.

One-room schools date back to the early history of the township. As all schools records were destroyed by fire in 1859, few details are known. But, by the year 1847, there were 17 schools. The closest school to Friendly Corners was S.S. Number 7, located 3 kilometers to the south. The original school was built on Thorndale Sideroad between the 4th and 5th concession roads. In 1872, the building was abandoned and sold. It was decided to move to a new location, and property was purchased from James Vanderburgh on the south-west corner of Thorndale Sideroad and the 4th.

The new S.S. No. 7 was built of the buff-coloured brick favoured in the township at that time. The gabled ends were finished with gingerbread wood trim and a bell tower added to the roof. The school was of typical one-room school dimensions, with 3 windows down each side. The school was built for approximately seven hundred dollars.

The school bell called students to class from 1872 to 1960, a total of 88 years. Edward Fitzsimmons, the grandson of Henry Fitzsimmons, bought S.S. No. 7 and used it for storage for a number of years. Today, the 126 year old building is in the process of being restored / renovated by Henry Fitzsimmon's great-granddaughter Joan Stubgen and family.

A History of S.S. No. 7 by Susan Muir, teacher at S.S. No. 7 from 1936 to 1942
Graphic of the Attendance Sheet for January 1912

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