Santa Manuela School, where Lopez Dam is today.
Today the playground is buried under Lopez Dam. Santa Manuela Schoolhouse was built in 1901 and served the families of the Lopez Canyon region until closed in 1957. When the dam was built in the late 1960s the South County Historical Society rescued the schoolhouse from demolition. It now sits at one end of the swinging bridge in the village of Arroyo Grande.
A teacher in a one room school house had to keep age levels from 4-14 busy and productive. Not an easy task but at least they did not have to contend with the distractions of televison, radio and cell phones. The school house was the community center and might provide the best entertainment for miles around.
For some reason this is the best documented one room school house in the Tribune archives.
These images are part of the Leonard collection of negatives, found in the Tribune archives but apparently a print also exists in the archives of the South County Historical Society. It is included it in the book “Arroyo Grande Images of America by Jean Hubbard and Gary Hoving
South County Historical Society.
The book caption says the photo with the three adults and baby was made in 1921. Only one negative in the Leonard collection is marked with a date, 1908, another is from the Arroyo Grande flood of 1914 and three appear to be from San Francisco at the time of the 1915 Panama-Pacific International Exhibition.
Likely from the Santa Manuela School, the Leonard Collection.
- Santa Manuela School
- High school exercises, the Leonard Collection
- Dunnigan’s Grammar School Baseball Nine, Leonard collection
- Mrs. B in her parlor 1908, the Leonard Collection
- The 1914 flood in Arroyo Grande, the Leonard Collection