Submitted by Nute Chapman
From Onaway Outlook February 22, 2013
CAPTION #1: STUDENTS AND TEACHERS at the Belding School. Back from left: Harold Varcoe, Dick Dunham,
Buel Varcoe, Herman Nash, David Belding, Jewell Varcoe, Monroe Dunham, Charles Cross, teacher Bud Stout,
Maybell Nash and Hilda Bowles. Front from left: Elwood Nash, Jim Stover, Oak Belding, Jack Moss, Helen
Dunham, Helen Cross, Ethel Varcoe, Kathleen Smith, Hazel Bowles, Helen Nash and Francis Stover.
CAPTION #2: BELDING SCHOOL before it became the Grange Hall. It is now a residence.
The Belding School, which is still standing today, is located on the southeast corner of Belding Road and Gibbons Highway. We do not know when this school was built, but the land was donated by George W. Belding.
George Belding was the first teacher at this school. Emma Porter was listed as the second teacher. Some other teachers at this school were Leslie Burgess, Lester (Bud) Stout and Frank Weir.
Some of the students who attended the Belding School over the years were Dave and Oak Belding; Hazel, Hilda and Robert Bowles; Charles and Helen Cross; Dick, Helen and Monroe Dunham; Lawrence and Pat McDonald; Jack Moss; Elwood, Helen, Herman and Maybelle Nash; Margaret, Glen, Jack, Wallie and Joyce Newsted; Bill Robinson; Kathleen Smith; Francis, Hattie, Jim and John Stover; Roy Trombley; Buel, Harold, Jewell and Ethel Varcoe; and Thea Whaley.
Joyce (Newsted) Van Zant, my mother-in-law, told me that the school had a big flat top stove with no jacket on it. Before noon the teacher would put a pan of water on the stove to heat. The children who brought soup for lunch could heat their jars of soup in the water.
The original school bell from the Belding School was given to Ruth (Preston) Newsted by her good friend Ann Gibbons. Grandma Ruth passed this bell on to her granddaughter Pat (Van Zant) Chapman. After having the bell displayed in our front yard here on School Street for many years, Pat donated the bell to the Onaway Courthouse Museum, in memory of her Grandma Ruth Newsted. We hope to see it back on display again some day.
Roda Chowen went to Belding School for one day and the school closed the next day, as the students would then be going to the Onaway School.
-From The Onaway Outlook, February 22, 2013, p. 3. Retyped by J. Anderson.