Were you a teacher or a student in a country school in Traill County? Do you have a memory or memorabilia to share? If so, Nannette Bagstad would love to hear from you!

A committee of Mayville State alumni Nannette Bagstad, Kelly Morrison, and Wayne Nelson is working to provide a country school experience in the Leila Ewen Traill County Township Schools Room at the Edson and Margaret Larson Alumni and Leadership Center at Mayville State University. Historical information, photos, furnishings, personal memoires, and memorabilia are wanted.

During the summer of 2010, an article published in the Traill County Tribune alerted readers of Nannette Bagstad’s desire to hear from individuals who had either taught or been educated in one of the 25 country schools in Traill County.

“The response was encouraging,” said Nannette. “I was given opportunities to examine memorabilia, scrapbooks, and school materials. I received textbooks, cardboard cutouts of Washington and Lincoln, a U.S. Flag with 48 stars, educational magazines from 1947, and pictures. I was not able to pursue my research project at the time, due to health issues. I am pleased to tell you that ‘all is now well.’ I am cancer-free, retired, and ready to begin compiling the memories of your country school experience!”

Nannette is asking folks to simply share the country schools memories they recall. Memories can relate to the school building itself; particular teachers or classmates; the educational activities; particular Christmas programs, carnivals, or specific events; special friendships; or outdoor activities during recess or noon hour.

Your handwritten or typed memories can be sent to Nannette by mail or email. (See contact information below.) Please include your name, school name, and the township in which it was located. If you wish to participate in an oral interview, that can be arranged.

Nannette will compile the information collected and place it into binders. The materials will be housed in the Leila Ewen Room in the Edson and Margaret Larson Alumni and Leadership Center. Formerly known as Northwest Hall, the historic building has been renovated and houses the offices of the MSU Foundation, as well as spaces for holding meetings and other gatherings. Everyone is encouraged to visit, read documents, view oral interviews, and/or examine memorabilia that has been collected.

While space is limited, Nannette says there are a few items the committee would like to add to the country school room: a school clock, a bell for the teacher’s desk, and a lawyer’s bookcase with glass doors. If you have items to donate, please contact Nannette directly.

“We would also appreciate receiving pictures of the 25 schools in the county,” said Nannette. “Please write your name, the school’s name, and the township on the back of the picture, and send to me.

Contact Nannette Bagstad at: 417 3rd Street SE, Mayville, ND 58257-1416; 701-786-2362; bagstad@gra.midco.net.