Where in the Valley: Mystery Schoolhouse

History is a tough subject at this former school



Where in the Hudson Valley...?

As most loyal readers know, our popular “Where in the Valley” feature is a combination of a history lesson and a game-show quiz. Each month, we publish a photograph of an interesting scene that’s located somewhere in the Valley; along with the photo, we include the back-story behind the site — what it is, and how it came to be — but not the exact location. We challenge our readers to tell us “Where in the Valley” the photo was snapped; the first person to write in with the correct answer wins a prize.

This month, however, is a little different.

Our editors spotted this 86-year-old school building — with its stately bell surrounded by a brick arch — while driving near one of the Valley’s biggest (and most historic) cities. As the plaque on the front clearly states, the edifice was built in 1924 and housed the Emma Wygant School. With its four classrooms, gymnasium, and lunch room, the school was erected to replace two other rural schools — one of which had just a single room. Ms. Wygant, our research indicates, was a popular teacher at both of these smaller halls of academia prior to her death in 1911; the “new” school was named in her honor. Sometime around 1960, the 46 kindergarten-through-fifth-grade students at Emma Wygant were transferred to a newer, larger school; the building is now home to a printing company.

And that, dear reader, is all we could discover about the Emma Wygant School. After several weeks of Internet Googling, combing through architectural guidebooks, consulting local historians — as well as the building’s current tenants — we were unable to learn much more than what is stated on the plaque. So we’re hoping you can help us fill in the blanks. If you know where this old-time academy is located, send us your answer as a comment in the box below. The first reader with the correct response takes home our prize. And if you attended Emma Wygant, please drop us a line and tell us about it. (We’d especially like to know if the bell still rings.) Good luck — and thanks!

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