Thetford Academy, White Building // 1942

Thetford Academy opened in February 1819, after the constitution of Vermont called for free elementary schools in each town, a school in each county for studies above the elementary level, and one university for the state. These schools prepared students in classical languages, mathematics, “natural philosophy,” and the arts for entrance into colleges and universities, and careers in ministry, law, medicine, and teaching. By the time Thetford Academy was founded, girls were being admitted to some academies (usually in the summer term) for studies which were advanced beyond the common schools, but which were not intended to prepare for college. Thetford Academy admitted both boys and girls from its founding. The school thrived beginning on it’s first day of classes, growing almost annually with new buildings constructed to house new classrooms and dormitories.

The first academic building, erected in 1818 by Fitch, was crowned by a bell tower and featured separate entries for boys and girls. It was destroyed by fire on November 14, 1942. Fueled by high winds, the fire also destroyed the girls’ dormitory and the library. Undeterred, the school rebuilt nearby beginning with this Colonial Revival building, known as the White Building. Later buildings were added to create the campus we see today.

Whitney Hill Schoolhouse // 1860

One-room schoolhouses were scattered all around small towns like Tunbridge, VT until the advent and proliferation of the personal automobile to allow students to meet in a single, larger school. The Whitney Hill Schoolhouse was one of such one-room schoolhouses that were located in town and constructed in a Vernacular Greek Revival style. The building features two doors at the gable end with transom windows, and a bank of windows at the end of the side facade, to provide light to the classroom inside. The school was apparently in use until the 1920s and appears to be used as a residence or something of the like today.