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Douglas Union School (Old School House)

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Old School House
1866–1867; 1963 rehabilitation; 2006–2010 restoration. 138 W. Center St.
  • (Photograph by Roger Funk)

The school is one of the first union schools in the Douglas area. It resulted from the consolidation of several nearby schools into a centralized school where all grades were taught. The large, two-story, post-and-beam wood-frame building has classical proportions with Italianate decorative features. A bracketed bell tower rises from the large, bracketed cross-gable roof, as if to announce its educational purpose. Until the 1920s, when the high school students began to go to Saugatuck, all grades were taught here in the four classrooms until the school closed in 1957. The school's architect is unknown but it was built under the direction of local lumberman and farmer Jonas Crouse. In 2006 the Saugatuck-Douglas Historical Society launched a project to restore the school as a new mixed-use space that will include the interpretation of area history. The 1892 Columbian anniversary bell was returned to the building's tower in 2009.

Writing Credits

Kathryn Bishop Eckert


What's Nearby


Kathryn Bishop Eckert, "Douglas Union School (Old School House)", [Douglas, Michigan], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Michigan

Buildings of Michigan, Kathryn Bishop Eckert. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2012, 271-272.

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