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Historic Sites of Manitoba: Utopia School No. 348 (RM of Roland)

This small parcel of land in the Rural Municipality of Roland was the site of Utopia School. Established formally in July 1884, a one-room frame schoolhouse was situated here until the early 1950s. It closed and remaining students went to Roland Consolidated School No. 2348. The district was dissolved in January 1954. The school building was moved to NE35-4-5W (about N49.35233, W98.02529) where it was used as a workshop. A metal commemorative sign was installed in the 2000s.

The teachers at Utopia School between 1883 and 1954 included the following: Mr. Turner, Mr. Moyer, Miss McDonald, S. Louis, William Philips, H. E. Gordon, Evelina Bell, Leonard Wilson, Jeanie Campbell, Maggie Doherty, Archie Fraser, Ed Walker, Mary Bradshaw, Andrew Anderson, Jennie Mitchell, Tillie McDulloch, Ella Harrison, Edith Martin, Ruth Whitely, Beatrice Hobbs, Addie Henry, Myril Van Wyck, H. M. Parkinson, Gertrude Higgins, Jenny Wilton (1915), Elizabeth Stewart, H. Patricia Adamson, Mildred Loree, Myra E. Parrott, Margerie Lovering, Elizabeth Dougall, Ruth Wilson, Mabel Kellington, Isabella S. Robertson, C. Beswitherick, Bertha Shields, Hattie I. Webster, Norma Murray, Laura Baker, Lyra McQuarrie, Jean Abercrombie, Lillian McKenzie, Jennie King, Nayda Stechkewich, Ruth McInnis, Evangeline S. Martin, and Nora Nesbitt.

Utopia School

Utopia School (circa 1909)
Source: “Roland’s Centennial History 1890 to 1990”

The former Utopia School

The former Utopia School (circa 1986)
Source: Historic Resources Branch, Public School Buildings Inventory, slide 1148.

The former Utopia School

The former Utopia School building (June 2013)
Source: Gordon Goldsborough

Utopia School commemorative sign

Utopia School commemorative sign (May 2020)
Source: Art Peers

Site Coordinates (lat/long): N49.40056, W97.93460
denoted by symbol on the map above

Sources:

Trails of the Pioneers, George H. Hambly, 1956.

One Hundred Years in the History of the Rural Schools of Manitoba: Their Formation, Reorganization and Dissolution (1871-1971) by Mary B. Perfect, MEd thesis, University of Manitoba, April 1978.

A Study of Public School Buildings in Manitoba by David Butterfield, Historic Resources Branch, Manitoba Department of Culture, Heritage and Tourism, 1994, 230 pages.

We thank Art Peers for providing additional information used here.

This page was prepared by Derryl Hall and Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 12 May 2020

Historic Sites of Manitoba

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