International Selkirk Loop - North Side School B&B - Bonners Ferry, ID
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member BK-Hunters
N 48° 42.155 W 116° 18.932
11U E 550360 N 5394620
Quick Description: Opening on January 24, 1914, this was the first substantial school built in the Bonners Ferry area, replacing a two room wood frame building and alleviating overcrowded conditions for pupils and teachers alike.
Location: Idaho, United States
Date Posted: 1/22/2015 6:39:23 PM
Waymark Code: WMN95Z
Published By: Groundspeak Charter Member BruceS
Views: 0

Long Description:
Crossing the Canada-U.S. border twice, the International Selkirk Loop is a 280 mile long route which encircles the Selkirk Mountains, following rivers, lakes and other waterways for much of its length. It is designated one of only 32 All-American Road National Scenic Byways in the U.S. Following the loop takes one through spectacular mountain scenery and many historic towns in eastern Washington, northern Idaho and southeastern British Columbia. The loop follows many historic waterways which were historically travelled by natives and explorers such as David Thompson, as well as gold seekers in the mid to late nineteenth century.

At the International Selkirk Loop website can be found a great Interactive Map which allows one to drill down to each area and community through which the loop passes for further information. For example, clicking on Bonners Ferry takes one to the Bonners Ferry Travel Guide.

Unless one is RVing or camping they will find that, while on the road, they will need to find accommodation on the average of once a day. We found this B&B in Bonners Ferry, ID, which is right beside the International Selkirk Loop, overlooking it, as it passes through the centre of town. Operated by a very friendly and accommodating couple, this B&B is highly recommended for several reasons, not the least of which is its status as a National Historic Place.

In 1992 the school closed and has since been turned into a B & B. Much of the original decor has remained through the renovation. It is a large and spacious B & B, with stairwell landing sitting rooms, a large dining room, spacious bedrooms and the overall atmosphere of an early twentieth century school. They have created nine bedrooms, each decorated in a different style, a hot tub and a heated pool which is open through the summer.

It isn't every day that one has the opportunity to overnight in a school, much less in a National Historic Place. The school was designated a National Historic Place in 1992. Its outside appearance has changed little since 1914, with the original school signs still in place on the front of the building.


North Side School

Located on a steep slope overlooking the town, the North Side School replaced an earlier two-room school on the same site, and was to serve the most rapidly growing neighborhood of Bonners Ferry. After bids were accepted at the end of September, the contract was awarded to J.G. Cox of Spokane. The architectural firm of Keith and Whitehouse, also of Spokane, drew up the plans. Although a bond issue for $10,000 had been previously passed, the Bonners Ferry Herald reported that the school's final cost totaled $15,000. The school opened on January 24, 1914, serving northside residents until 1990. The next year, Jim and Ruth Burkholder purchased the building, and at this writing are renovating the school for use as their home.

Architecturally, the North Side School is associated with the town's role as a center of the northern panhandle. The parapet over the entrance bay, the oversized brackets under the porch roof, the terra cotta trim and the rusticated brickwork of the basement level give the building a degree of formality not seen in schools of the surrounding communities. It typifies the "third wave" of school construction, in which officials could employ more mainstream design, approve the use of substantial materials, and in this case, hire architects to provide the plans. The school was designed so that another wing could be added that would be compatible with the existing building; however, this was never undertaken, and the school has an asymmetrical appearance, making it rare among Idaho schools.

The North Side School is historically significant for its representation of the stability and maturation of the public education system in Bonners Ferry, which in turn is associated with the development of this community. Constructed in 1914, the school was built during a period of economic and political consolidation in Idaho, and Bonners Ferry was not immune to the growth and prosper- ity that was experienced throughout the state. Architecturally, the building is an example of the more advanced phase of school design seen in Idaho schools from 1890 to 1930. It has a multiple-room plan, is constructed of brick and exhibits architectural details, representing a progression from the frame, one- or two-room schools of vernacular design that are associated with a more tenuous phase of a community's development.
From the Idaho Historical Society

Program: America's Byways

Website: [Web Link]

Official Name: International Selkirk Loop

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