July 12th–August 20th, 2010
Union Hill School

Union Hill School

Three Miles in the Snow: A Look at Taney County One-Room Schoolhouses, was the first completely in-house exhibit for the WRVHS.

Along with the exhibit, we hosted two noon-time events, a talk by J. D. Nave on his experiences as a student and a teacher and a preview of oral history interviews conducted by Forsyth High School students. The student oral history program began in 2009 with a grant from the Roy Slusher Foundation. That generous donation allowed the White River Valley Historical Society to partner with a group of students from Forsyth High School under the direction of teacher Laura Dees.

For “Three Miles in the Snow,” life in the one-room school was discussed with charm, humor, and heartwarming affection. The students touched on many topics: how they got to school, pranks and punishment, recess games, the challenges of the depression years, boyfriends and girlfriends, pie suppers, outhouses, teachers, grades and graduation.

The original intent of the project was not only to gather historical information, but to encourage conversations between the generations. The funding from the Slusher Foundation enabled the WRVHS to purchase a video camera and other oral history equipment, and we hope that the success of the project will encourage other students in Taney County to continue gathering the stories of their elders.

We showed only about 35 minutes of our favorite “bits” from all six interviews during the program. The complete interviews are available as part of our growing oral history collection. The interviewees had much more to say about their school days, and also covered topics ranging from WWII in the Pacific to a history of the Layton family.

The six complete oral histories recorded by the students & a two-disk set will be available in our gift shop on May 1st. It will include the program by J.D. Nave, a discussion by Board President Ingrid Albers and Managing Director Leslie Wyman about the overall project, the “Three Mile” video clips, audience stories and comments from the event, and photos and commentary from our exhibit.

Click here to see additional photos (Link will open in a new window.)