18499 Beech Daly Rd, Redford, MI
Other names: Beech Road School, Redford Union District No. 1
Built: Between 1920
Michigan State Historic Site: March 17, 1994
National Register of Historic Places: 1997
Three Redford Township District No.5 schools have stood on this property.
A log structure served students from around 1842 until the 1870s, when a wooden-frame school was constructed. The present structure, built sometime between 1916 and 1921, was erected according to stock plans provided free by the State Superintendent of Public Instruction who noted, “The modern rural building is planned to observe both hygienic needs and the conveniences of schoolroom administration.”
Renamed Redford Union School District No.1 in 1923 and known popularly as the Beech Road School, this is a rare surviving example of a school that exhibits every detail of the State Superintendent’s design, including the belfry and the simple decorative brickwork.
(2014 Photo from The Redford Observer before volunteers touched up the paint)
Redford Union School District’s oldest standing school is the most recent of our 3 properties to be designated as a historic site. A dedication ceremony was held on September 25, 1994 where the double-sided marker was unveiled. There would be more cause for celebration when the school was placed on the National Register of Historic Places three years later. This is the only building in Redford Twp to be listed on the national register. A special plaque has been affixed to the building. Classes were held here until 1961. It was also used as the Board of Education headquarters.
The interior of the school consists of two classrooms on the main floor and a two-room basement. Check out the exterior sketch and building plan HERE – as featured in the 1916 Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction. This was “Design No. 9”, of 10 one and two-room stock plans offered by the state.
An article published by the Redford Observer on November 30, 1997, titled That rings a bell, featured 2 photos that take you back in time. View the full article HERE.
The bell, that still resides in the belfry, was purchased in 1920 from the Sears Roebuck catalog for about $20.