30 October 2019

Blawenburg School

On May 8, 1961, with the addition to the Hillsborough Consolidated School less than 5 years old, Sunnymead School less than two years old, and two new buildings - Triangle and Woodfern - under construction, the Hillsborough Township Board of Education was still so short of space that they voted to ask the County Superintendent of Schools permission to use substandard classrooms in older buildings around the district - and elsewhere.

The 1925 Blawenburg School, photographed in 2019

One of the school buildings Hillsborough students were transported to in September of 1961 was Blawenburg School in Montgomery Township. This two-room school on Route 518 near the intersection of Great Road was built in 1925 to replace an earlier two-room school a couple of lots to the east. It was built in a similar style to other Hillsborough and Montgomery schools of the period and served its function until 1966 when it was taken over for school board offices. The building was later sold and is currently being used as a warehouse for the home furniture and gifts retailer Homestead Princeton.

The original 1853 Blawenburg School. postcard circa 1906

The school it replaced was a little two-room village schoolhouse on a two-tenths on an acre lot next to the Blawenburg Dutch Reformed Church. It was built in 1853 as a replacement for an earlier school on Burnt Hill Road. The school is actually two stories, with the upper floor being reserved in the 19th-century as a community lecture hall.

1860 map of the village of Blawenburg

The main part of the school is of brick construction which was later covered by stucco, and eventually other types of siding. There is also a one-story front entryway clad in board and batten. After 1925 the church reacquired the lot and the school and added the addition on the west side in the next year. In 1950 another addition was constructed at the rear of the school. They used the school for church and community activities up until 1960.

the 1853 Blawenburg School, photographed in 1984

Between 1974 and 1998 the 1853 Blawenburg School was home to Rock Brook School - a private school for children with special needs. In 1999, the Blawenburg Reformed Church rechristened the building as Blawenburg Village School and have been running a pre-school for children ages 2 1/2 to 6.

The 1853 Blawenburg School photographed in 2019

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