Farmington's Normal School -- a teacher-training facility -- opened in 1863 and, over the decades, offered academic programs that included such unique features as domestic and child-care training, and extra-curricular activities from athletics to music and theater.
Public education has been a part of Maine since Euro-American settlement began to stabilize in the early eighteenth century. But not until the end of the nineteenth century was public education really compulsory in Maine.
Many of the one-room schoolhouses in Otisfield, constructed from 1839 through the early twentieth century, are featured here. The photos, most of which also show teachers and children, were taken between 1898 and 1998.
In the 19th century the sole classroom teacher was usually an unmarried young woman, sometimes with students even older than herself.