Epsom One Room Schools

Schools in Epsom, N.H. written by George H. Yeaton circa 1963

"The division of the town into districts for school purposes was by common consent or an occasional vote of the town until May 19, 1808, when the selectmen were instructed to make such division, “and affix meter and bounds to the same, and make a return thereof to the clerk to be by him recorded,” and was substantially as follows:
District Number 1, contained all that is now comprised within its limits: also that portion of diestrict No. 7 on the turnpike, below Warren Yeaton’s and from Yeaton’ s to Deerfield line. District Number 2 contained all on the turnpike from from the east side of the New Orchard road to Chichester line all north of the turnpike; also from the shoe factory to”Cyder Brook” (so called) just south of the house of John Spurlin. District Number 3 was composed of what is now Districts Number 3 and 9 (New Rye and the Mountain) and extended to the corner at Short Falls.
District Number 4 contained all on the west side of the Suncook River lying southerly of the turnpike and from Short Falls bridge to the Mountain District near the Short Falls post office. District Number 5 contained that portion of the “North Road” District northerly from the turnpike, and on the turnpike from the Northwood road to the mile-post near Henry Knowles’ house, and also what is now united with Pittsfield in forming No. 6.
District Number 6 was the New Orchard District very nearly as it now exists.

Sometime later the Districts were re-numbered about the year 1830-1841. In January of 1833 the school house in District Number 3 was burned, and the following season the district was divided forming the New Rye and Mountain Districts, the former taking Number 9, the “Fowler District” having been taken off of Number 4 a few years before and numbered 8. In 1851 District No. 10 “Marden’s” was taken from Number 2, and there are two union districts - one with Pittsfield, Number 6 and one with Chichester, known as the Union District. In the year 1885 there were nine school houses in Epsom. This made eleven school districts including the two union districts.
In January of 1833 the school house in District No. 3 (Mountain District) was burned and the following season the district was divided, forming the New Rye District (Number 9). The New Rye school house was built in 1833 or 1834. This was the first school house built at New Rye. It was built at a cost of $220.00 and paid Bickford Lang $4.00 for the land. The present building was built in 1879 at a cost of $669.87. Paid Eben S. Dutton for land $25.00. Closed June 1942 and later sold to the New Rye Union Congregational Church.

From old Epsom Records: March 17, 1784. it was “Voted to raise forty-five pounds for the support of a school,” In March, 1782 it was “Voted to raise one hundred silver dollars for the support of schools.”

PHOTOS: First in each series from Epsom Historical Association Archives; middle smaller photo taken by George Yeaton in 1963. The color photos are as they appear May 2000.


The first school house in Epsom, N.H. was at Center Hill. It was later replaced by the present building, which was closed in June 1955.

District No. 2 GOSSVILLE SCHOOL (former Cilley District)

In the year 1840 the original school building at Gossville was located on the Goborough Road near where the Huckins Oil Company is now. It was then known as the Cilley District.
After a time a new building was erected at the present site. This later building was sold to Benjamin M. Towle in the year 1894. He moved it to his home on the Black Hall Road for use as a stable.
The present building was built the same year (1894). In 1923 it was enlarged and made a two-room school and was used until the new Central School was completed in 1955.

District No. 3 MOUNTAIN (Red School House) SCHOOL

The Mountain District School was closed in 1911. The building was sold in the year 1920 or 1921 to the Mountain School Club for $15.00. It was opened for one year of school in 1926 and 1927.


The Short Falls School closed in 1955 when the new Central School was opened. It now belongs to the Elwdood O. Wells Post, American Legion.


The New Orchard School House was built in 1884. It replaced the old building that was one-fourth of a mile north. This school was closed permanently in the year 1930. It was later sold to George H. Yeaton.

District No. 6 UNION DISCTRICT (Pittsfield)

Union with Pittsfield. In 1841 a Pittsfield School District and Epsom School District number 6 were united to form “Republican School District.”(taken from N.H. Manual for the General Court)


The North Road School closed in June 1935. Later the building was sold to John P. Yeaton.


The school house in the Fowler District is gone. It is understood that it was moved from there and later destroyed in a fire. The last time school was kept in the building was the year of 1888. At that time or during the school year of 1889 the Fowler District united with Short Falls District.

District No. 9 NEW RYE SCHOOL

The school house at New Rye closed in June 1942 and later sold to the New Rye Congregational Church. The orginal building burned in 1998 and was rebuilt identical to the orginal. It is the home of Epsom Scout Troop 80.


The Marden District school house was located on “Brimstone Hill” where Russell Johnson has built his house. The building was sold to George H. Burnham about the year 1893 and moved to his mill yard for use as a blacksmith shop. At present it is owned by George E. Huckins and used by him as a shop.
The Marden District was united with the Gossville School in 1886.

District No. 11
Union with Chichester

District at Jug City
At one time there was a school house on the Jug City Road at the top of the long hill on the west side of the road near some ledges. This was about the year 1830. Sometime after that date it was taken to the Short Falls District and used to enlarge that school building.
In the year 1853 a school house was built to replace the one at Short Falls District No. 4. It is assumed that was when the Jug City Road school house was used at Short Falls.