Little Red School House Museum/Lyndhurst Historical Society
400 Riverside Avenue
Lyndhurst, NJ 07071
Open: Last Sunday of the month from 2:00pm-4:00pm
The Lyndhurst Historical Society is an interesting look into the early history of both the town of Lyndhurst, NJ and Bergen County. The museum shows how we moved from the agricultural era to the modern era in just one generation. The growth of the county really accelerated after the Civil War into the 1920’s. The building itself is built on the original 1804 school house that was torn down for the newer one built in 1893. The unique part of the museum’s history is that the building was used as a school house for third graders in the town until 1980.
The Old Schoolhouse is the museum
The museum is a treasure trove of memorabilia from the town’s past. One part of the museum is set up as an early school room with desks, blackboards and a whole teacher’s work area while the other side of the display is a nurses office for the kids. What is unique about the museum is that the original bell to call the children for school is still located on the top of the building and the bell can be accessed by the string in the coat room. They even let you ring the original school bell that has been in place all this time. The original built in chalk boards exist with artwork that had been left on them from the 20’s that have now been preserved.
The Little Red Schoolhouse Garden
The other side of the floor plan is items from the 100th Anniversary of Lyndhurst that happened last year. The displays are related to the celebration with displays on businesses that have been in town for many years, Indian relics that were found in the town and memorabilia. Even the basement bathrooms are from the 1920’s and still work!
Lyndhurst Historical Society:
The Lyndhurst Historical Society is a private, non-profit organization dedicated to the preservation of local historic sites and the promotion of community pride in our history and traditions.
In 1984, a group of local citizens formed the Lyndhurst Historical Society. One of the Society’s early projects was to restore the “Little Red Schoolhouse” on Riverside Avenue and establish a museum in the schoolhouse for the exhibition of local history memorabilia.
With community support as well as county and state grants, the Society’s goal to open the Schoolhouse Museum to the public was achieved in 1993.
The Society meets regularly on the third Wednesday of each month (except July and August) to…
*plan and present educational programs and workshops of historical interest.
*raise funds to meet the goals of the organization.
Active members and supporters are vital to the success and growth of the Lyndhurst Historical Society. We welcome:
*those interested in membership.
*anyone wishing to volunteer time.
*offers of financial support (all memberships and donations are tax deductible in accordance with IRS regulations).
Little Red Schoolhouse:
A one room schoolhouse crowned by a bell, symbolizes a simpler time, 19th and early 20th century America.
In 1804, Jacob Van Winkle presented a strip of land to the school trustees for the construction of River Road School (“The Little Red Schoolhouse”). The yearly rent was one peppercorn if demanded. Thus was born the first known public school system of southern Bergen County. A subsequent building was erected in 1849. In 1893, the present school was built and used for classes until 1980.
The Township purchased the school in 1984. It was leased to the Lyndhurst Historical Society in order to preserve this landmark, now more than a century old, for future generations to appreciate and to use as a local museum.
Lyndhurst Historical Sites:
The Little Red Schoolhouse is one of three historic sites in Lyndhurst.
Just south of the Schoolhouse is the Jeremiah Yearance House, circa 1841. Years ago, teachers assigned to the School often boarded at the Yearance House during the week because the commute by train to their permanent homes would be too long.
One block north of the Schoolhouse is the Jacob Van Winkle House, built in 1797. Van Winkle presented the property for the Schoolhouse in 1804. River Road School is joined by the Van Winkle and Yearance Houses on both the National and New Jersey registries of historic places.
Historical Events & Trivia:
Did you know…
*Lyndhurst was once called Achter Kol?
*The town has three sites on both the New Jersey and National Historic Sites Registry?
*January 9, 2004 marked the 200th anniversary of the deeding of the land to the school house?
*Lewandowski Commons is named for the brothers killed in World War II?
*Palazzo Corner, built in 1905 and located at 262 Ridge Road, was used as the town’s first police state and court clerk’s office?
*The Jacob Van Winkle House, now the Masonic Club is the oldest building in Lyndhurst?
Events sponsored by the Lyndhurst Historical Society include:
*re-enactments & historical portrayals
*cultural, artistic and musical presentations
*bus and walking tours of Lyndhurst
Schoolhouse Museum Information:
The museum is located on the corner of Fern and Riverside Avenue, is open to the general public on the fourth Sundays of each month from 2:00pm to 4:00pm.
Group tours can be arranged at any time by reservation for schools, organizations and individuals. A visit includes a tour of the Schoolhouse, its exhibits and a presentation of local history by one of the Society’s docents. Call (201) 804-2513 for further information on museum tours and special events.
Disclaimer: The second part of the this information was taken directly from the Lyndhurst Historical Society’s pamphlet. The Little Red Schoolhouse is open from 2:00pm-4:00pm on the last Sunday of each month or by appointment only. Please plan accordingly.