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The Bonanza School District was formed in 1930. Board members included David Nickel, chairman, Mrs. E.S. Iverson, secretary/treasurer and Paul Radke (later replaced by Eric Hingley). Construction of a school was begun in 1931. Miss Hilda Bland (sixty years old) was offered a teaching contract for 1932 at a wage of $700 and a mill rate of 25 mills on the dollar was assessed.

Miss Bland preferred to live in a teacherage so Elmer Iverson built one in his yard. In 1933 permission was requested from the Department of Education to hire a teacher for $50 a month. A barn was also built and an ice house was built in 1934. In 1934, Mr, and Mrs. Jack Remenyk plastered the inside of the school using a straw and clay mixture. Whitewash was then applied giving the walls a clean fresh appearance

In 1943 the original building was replaced by a two-room frame structure, and then replaced again in 1955-56 and sold in 1959. By the 1956-57 term, the school included high school including 6 grade 11 students. Students from Clark and Many Creeks were bussed to Bonanza, and Bay Tree students came in the fall of 1957. By 1959-60 the school had expanded to 4 classrooms. A staff room, principal’s office, two washrooms and a mud entrance were added in 1962 and the heating changed from coal to propane.

By 1963 the school was overcrowded with 110 students, so in 1964 two more classrooms were added: a library and a portable building brought in to act as a gymnasium. By 1965, high school students were being bussed to Dawson Creek.


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With thanks to the South Peace Regional Archives

South Peace Regional Archives began operating in January 2000 as a project of the Grande Prairie Museum and a member of the Archives Society of Alberta. On July 30, 2007 the South Peace Regional Archives Society was formed.

All persons interested in having a voice in the preservation of archival records in the South Peace Country of Alberta are encouraged to become members.




Preserving Our History – Telling Our Stories

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Contact Us

Saddle Hills
Junction of Hwy 49 & Secondary Hwy 725
RR1, Spirit River AB
T0H 3G0
T. 780-864-3760
Fax 780-864-3904
Toll-free 1-888-864-3760

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