More than a decade ago, the Halifax Area Historical Society was dreaming big.
Having acquired the former Taylor’s School, the members set about renovating the building into a museum replicating a one-room country schoolhouse.
When the work ground to a halt, much to the members’ disappointment, they could not have known at the time that a local Boy Scout had big dreams of his own.
Dylan Bowman had set two goals – one, to earn Boy Scouting’s highest honor, the Eagle Award; two, to have some kind of hand in seeing Taylor’s School become what the society had wanted it to become.
As summer becomes autumn, the son of Ryan and Traci Bowman is reaching those goals, one at a time. The renovation of the former one-room school into a museum is now complete, due to Dylan choosing it for his required Eagle Award community service project. (He still must formally present the work for Eagle Scout eligibility.) Still under the society’s ownership, the museum will be open to the public, free of charge, from 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 29. It is located at the intersection of Taylor’s School and Matamoras Road, southeast of Halifax Borough. (Many GPS devices list the location as “Powell’s Valley Church’’).
‘Like a dream come true’
Taylor’s is one of several one-room schoolhouses operated by the Halifax-area school system until the late 1950s, when elementary students were relocated to the newly -constructed Enders-Fisherville building or the former Boyer Memorial School in Halifax Borough.
Taylor’s School is a building with many close connections to the Bowman family. ‘‘My grandfather Max (Ryan’s father) was a student here in the 1950s,’’ Dylan noted.
‘‘My great-great-aunt, Kathryn Altland, was the last teacher here. ‘‘Our family attends Word of Life Chapel in Halifax, which originated in this building after the school closed.’’
‘‘I’m a great lover of history. Having the opportunity to do something like this – changing (Taylor’s) into a museum – was like a dream come true for me,’’ he added. It also was a dream come true for the historical society, whose members had labored many years trying to complete a renovation.
‘‘It dragged on, and we didn’t have all the resources we needed to finish it,’’ according
SEE TAYLOR’S SCHOOL • PAGE A10