Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Recollections: OSA excerpts from Newell's Hart's Cache Valley Newsletter

Thanks to Newell Hart's granddaughter, Sorel Frew, who provided the Oneida Stake Academy Foundation with a collection of comments regarding the Oneida Stake Academy, which originally appeared in Hart's Cache Vally Newsletter (CVN) from 1969 to 1982, we present Recollections.

Daines Famiy gathers  at OSA to film for visual history of Newel Daines
From March 1978 CVN

“Attorney Daines, of Preston/Logan, died in 1959 at the age of 64. Arrangements were made with me [Hart] by  Preston family member, Lois D. Griffeth. In charge of tech filming and sound was a son, Atty. S. R. Daines, of Logan, assisted by his sister, Beulah Daines Burgoyne of Salt Lake City. Present as spectators and participants were Lydia Daines Smith, wife of Harold Smith of Logan, and Newel's widow, Verna Rainey Daines, formerly of Star Valley, Wyoming.

            “Various family members posed at specific places where things pertaining to Newel’s life occurred, or where Academy or other memories could be recalled … Lois on he front steps, beneath the great carved stone corbel, reciting her first memories of her older brother, how he came home from World War I and how he gave her a warm hug; Lydia, against the double doors of the heavy auditorium entrance, recalling stories of Newel doing this over here and something else in another area of the room, and later, elsewhere, discussing some of the songs popular in her brother’s era and which were danced to at the Academy; Verna, recalling Newel’s story where he and Charley Cutler plotted to steal some of Dr. Cutler’s chickens for a gala fast.

And since I have been working on the restoration, and since I was named after Newel Daines, I was also drafted into the action… reposed near the podium I built from Central School doors, saying a few things about the closeness of the Daines/Hart families, and also a little about the Story of the Academy.

            “Later the troupe went to other places in town to do more segments, including one at the front porch of the classic old Joseph S. Geddes place on Second East and Oneida – now the Lois D. Griffith home. [In 2012, this is where Kathy Kunz's home has been built.]

            “Otherwise at the Academy: We are again doing window work, replacing cracked panes on the main floor. We have completed the old Faculty Room, and adjacent office of the principal. A key has been turned over to the county DUP captain, Anne Clements, so that she and her group can transform the space into their first-ever, very own County Camp headquarters. Publicity shots will soon show the ladies hard at work.

            “Window replacement has now shifted to the room across the hall, to the east, to take care of the last stages of this big job. This old classroom, which Madison Merrill told me last summer was once the Academy Library, will eventually become the memorabilia Room of the Oneida Academy and its successor, the Preston High School.”

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Update - OSA building's new gable parts to be assembled

The building's name carved in stone.
The frame which will hold the newly carved rock or the academy.
New end-piece and date stone. The OSA was assembled between 1890 and 1894. It was dedicated in 1895.
Pieces of the new gable for the Oneida Stake Academy building are coming together in the shops of Kepco and State Stone in Salt Lake City. Most of the stones inscribed with words have been completed, as well as end pieces, the star and date stone. These stones, as well as hand-carved face stones will be fitted into the frame, which is now being galvanized.

Once the newly carved stones are attached to the frame, it will be transported to Preston, and lifted into place.
The Oneida Stake Academy Foundation appreciates the public's support of the restoration of the Oneida Stake Academy building as a cultural center and museum of local history, said Oneida Stake Academy Foundation chairman, Nathan Hale. Once completed, the building's top floor ballroom will be available to the public for use as a setting for weddings, receptions, reunions and other community events.

Events committee formed

A recently organized events committee has begun planning events that will be sponsored through the Oneida Stake Academy Foundation upon completion of the building's restoration. The OSAF board intends to be able to open the building for use in honor of the 100th birthday of Franklin County next year.

To learn more about this historic restoration one can go to or contact any member of the foundation: Nathan and Sydney Hale, Elliott Larsen, Larry Bradford, Lyle Fuller, Ed Moser, James Brown, Kim Wilson, Joseph Linton, Paul Judd and Necia Seamons, and Paul and Sharon Norton who serve as volunteer consultants.

Online donations now possible

Furthermore, donations to the OSA restoration can now be made online through PayPal at the above website address. To make a donation in the name of someone else, please note your intent in the special instructions box on the donation site. Donations can also be sent to the Oneida Stake Academy Foundation, P.O. Box 555, Preston, Idaho 83263. All contributions are tax-deductible.