The Little Red Schoolhouse Program

In the early 1970s, Norwalk’s historic 1826 one-room school house known as the “Downtown District School House” was threatened by demolition to make way for the Connecticut Turnpike. The Norwalk Historical Society acted quickly to save and move the School House to Mill Hill Historic Park in 1971, and the rest is history.

For over 40 years, Norwalk’s third grade school children have participated in the “Little Red Schoolhouse” Program at Mill Hill Historic Park. This unique educational program presents the early history of Norwalk in an exciting and engaging format that complements the 3rd grade history curriculum. Hundreds of school children visit Mill Hill each year for this program.

They are greeted by a costumed re-enactor who interprets the life and duties of Colonial Governor Thomas Fitch in the c.1740 Governor’s Law Office. 

A teacher gives a lesson in the Little Red Schoolhouse, 1977 | Ph-6933 | Norwalk Library History Room
Norwalk Hour newspaper article, 1982

Students experience a day in a one-room schoolhouse from 1826 by doing arithmetic on a slate, writing with quill and ink and reading from a hornbook.

The program also includes a visit to the new NHS exhibit, “Norwalk’s Changing Communities: 13,000BC–1835.”

The Norwalk Historical Society continues to strive to develop creative ways to bring history to life for the children of our community.