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The Snowden School Survives Almost Forty Years

The Snowden School District was established in 1898 along the Montague-Ager Road, 5 ½ miles north of Montague, Calif., in Siskiyou County. The school’s name derived from the nearby Snowden Southern Pacific Railroad Station.

The school usually offered classes six months of the year to an average of 12 to 16 pupils. The first teacher was Lena Rose Barbour. Other teachers included Ethel Cooper, Mrs. Walter Lichens, Rosie Rose, and Mrs. Helmuth, whose husband operated the Denny Bar general store in Yreka.
Students who attended the school in 1906 under Miss Ethel Cooper, included Mildred Dexter, Andy Dexter, Elsie Dexter, Ernest Dexter, John Jones, Arthur Cooley, Ben Richardson, Carl Clark, Henry Clark, Maggie Kouts, and Herman Hagedorn. The Cooley family was one of the most successful at ranching in the area.
The Snowden schoolhouse burned in April 1918, and, as reported by the Yreka Journal, “All the furniture, except the teacher’s desk, was saved. School continues in the woodhouse. During the summer a new schoolhouse will be put up.” 
In 1937, the district was annexed to the Willow Creek School District, and the Cooley family moved the schoolhouse to Yreka, where it was converted into a home.

Source: Fiock, May. Siskiyou Pioneer. Vol. V. Yreka: Siskiyou County Historical Society, 1985. 44. 

Gail Fiorini-Jenner is a writer and teacher. Her first novel "Across the Sweet Grass Hills", won the 2002 WILLA Literary Award. She co-authored four histories with Arcadia Publishing: Western Siskiyou County: Gold & Dreams, Images of the State of Jefferson, The State of Jefferson: Then & Now, which placed in the 2008 Next Generation Awards for Nonfiction and Postcards from the State of Jefferson.