A well-worn trail through thick woods in northern Montgomery County leads to an old schoolhouse.
Kingsley Schoolhouse was built in 1893 to educate students living on local farms of Little Bennett Creek Valley.
The school served approximately more than a dozen children. As was the custom in most schoolhouses around that time, students were summoned to school using a bell.
The classroom was heated using a wood-burning stove, and students were taught standard subjects such as arithmetic, reading, and writing.
A playground with swings and seesaws once stood behind the building but is no longer present. Schoolchildren not only played games such as dodgeball and softball, but also learned to fish in the nearby creek. During winter, kids would go sledding or ice skating for physical education.
The school was segregated and shut down in 1935 as students were diverted to a new, larger school in Clarksburg.
The schoolhouse was rehabilitated by the Montgomery County Department of Parks between 2007 and 2012 and opened for educational events and viewings by the public. The inside still maintains a 1920s decor.
Know Before You Go
Kingsley Schoolhouse can be reached by parking in the Little Bennett Regional Park Foggy Hollow Trailhead parking lot and following the Kingsley Schoolhouse path through the woods for approximately 3/4 of a mile until the path ends at the school.
The hike is not particularly challenging, but there is a decent stretch that is downhill on the way there and uphill on the way back. Hiking shoes are recommended, especially if the ground is wet.
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