Bruno, an isolated community fifteen miles from the nearest railroad, is significant for its school’s impressive program and advancement in agricultural education, an outcome of the federal Smith-Hughes National Vocational Education Act of 1917. In 1921, J. B. Ewart, a graduate of Arkansas State University, came to this isolated community to teach vocational agriculture in the local school. Two years later, the school’s students organized the Lincoln Aggie Club, an embryo of what led to the organization in 1927 of the national association of the Future Farmers of America. In 1926, twenty-six of the school’s students constructed a wooden gymnasium and clad it with rubble stone. Known as Aggie Hall, the large rectangular building has a hipped roof with a hipped-roof monitor along the ridge line and operable clerestory windows to provide light and air to the interior. The Smith-Hughes Act and later New Deal programs enabled the Bruno School complex to expand into one of the largest agricultural programs in the state. By 1935, the Aggie Workshop, a larger and more complex facility, was added. The school closed in the 1970s, and although Aggie Hall has been repurposed, the building remains a notable example of the use of the plentiful indigenous fieldstone of the Ozark Mountains.
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Aggie Hall, Bruno School
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