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Old schoolhouse sat abandoned. Couple turns it into dream home

The 19th-century one-room schoolhouse in Weare, New Hampshire, sat vacant for 15 years before Kreg and Danielle Jones wandered down the road searching for a fixer-upper project to tackle with their 18-year-old son.

It was zoned commercial and had been on the market for 7 years, but once the owner had it rezoned as residential, the couple bought it and quickly began planning to turn the hollowed-out former classroom into a home for themselves and their two children.

Unlike some of its wooden counterparts, the brick-and-granite building was structurally sound but had been hollowed out over the years to an empty shell. The family got to work turning the main classroom space into an open-plan home, patching the tin-and-horsehair ceiling, adding insulation, improving the leaky windows, and installing a pellet stove to heat a space with 14-foot ceilings.

The original school had separate stairs on both sides of the building so girls and boys could climb to the lunchroom separately”: “Girls wore dresses back then.”, explains Kreg. “That’s what we’ve been told was the reason. The girls went up the really steep stairs and they didn’t want the boys co-mingling at that point.”

The family has maintained the old reminders of the children who passed through here: graffiti carved into cladding, names etched into wall panels and even the old pulley from the school bell. The home also houses their home office (Inscription Architects).