The Balsam Bay School District No. 859 was formed on May 7, 1895 by bylaw No. 128 of the Council of the Rural Municipality of St. Clements to consist of the following lands: Sections, 9, 10, 15, 16, 21,22,23,26,27, 28, 32, 33, 34, 35, whole or fractional in tp. 17-78. Sections 4, 5,’1,8,9, ll, 17, 18, whole or fractional in Tp. l8-7E.
Councillor Phillip Monk man had been agitating for a school to be formed at Balsam Bay since early in 1890. He served notice that a by law would be introduced several times but to no avail. The school existed, but petitions were being presented from residents of Balsam Bay for assistance in support of a provisional school which was ahead established. Ratepayers were urging Council to write to the Dept. of Educ. to see if they would aid the school. Council decided to take no action on the petition at the time it was presented and it was laid over until the spring of 1895. Then in March and April Phillip Monkman introduced the bylaw (No. 128) to form the Balsam Bay S.D. which was read three times and duly passed. However, it is to be noted that in June of 1895 Balsam Bay received no monies when the other schools were paid. In Nov. 1895 Councillor
Monkman inquired whether anything was being done to get Balsam Bay school in working order. The clerk of the munc. stated the bylaw had been assented to by the Dept. of Educ. but that the several letters written to the ratepayers of newly formed school district were not replied to and that under the Act the first meeting to be called must have posted notices in advance of meeting. Nothing had been done in the way of organization. The
Clerk was instructed to arrange for a meeting as soon as possible.
The first school was located on the lakeshore where the cemetery is located.
The meeting was conducted and Mr. Patrick Bruce was one of the first teachers recorded. Mr. Bruce taught prior to formation as well, but was not paid via tax levy or any formalized legal district boundary.
The boundaries were readjusted April 4, 1916 by bylaw No. 121 of R.M. of St. Clements adding Secs. 2 and 3 tp. l8-7E and by-law No. 120 detaching Sacs. 7, 8, 9, 1l fractional 17, all of 18 in tp. l8-7E.
Aug. 7, l9l7 another bylaw No. 149 of St. Clements further detached Sec. 9-17-7E and added Sec. I in tp. l8- TE and Secs. ll,12, 13, 14,24,25,36in11-7E.
By June 7, 1921 bylaws No. 205 of St. Clements transferred Secs. l0-16-68 to Stoney Point No. 2077.
Balsam Bay S.D. was readjusted Jan. 19, 1927 by detaching further sections; 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, the Sl l2 of 21, Sl l2 of 22, St t2 of 23, St t2 of 24, into. t’t- 7E in the formation of the S.D. of Beaconia No. 2162.
Jan. 8, 1928 saw another adjustment by J.E.S. Dunlop under the provisions of Sec. 123, Sub. Sec. ,.J” of the PSA transferring the NEI /4 of Sec. l-18-7E to the S.D. ofDunlopNo.2l50.
In the spring of 1931 another chunk of Balsam Bay went to the Dunlop S.D. when they transferred the NWI /4 of I and the NEI /4 of 2 in tp. l8-78.
Therefore, by Sept. 1934 the Balsam Bay S.D. consisted of: S1/2 of Sec. 1, S1/2 and NWt /4 ofSec. 2, Sec. 3, 4, and 5 in tp. 18-7EandtheNl/2,sofSec.21,22,23, 24, 25,26,27,28. 32.33, 34, 35. and 36 in rp. l7-7E.
Some of the Sec.-Treas. for the Balsam Bay School were: Mr. Thomas, Mr. John Orvis, Dan Anderson, H. Newman, Reuben Thomas, Marge Monkman, and Wlm. Frazer.
Teachers listed as having taught at Balsam Bay are as follows with no record for 1907, although it was probably Ada Peebles. The second half of 1913 is not listed but all indications point to Felix Sauer as being in charge.
The year 1923, second half, could have been taught by either Gustave Pfaff or Jas. E. Plewes.
The Dept. of Educ. records, no staff are mentioned during 1901 to 1904. In the Selkirk Weekly Record there is a mention of a Mr. A.K. Black teaching at Balsam Bay during the year of 1904, however, he had fairly lengthy
holidays as it was reported that in Jan. 1905 he was taking another month’s leave before starting to teach again. Ada Peebles took over from him in 1905 it would appear.
The second school was burned down in early lg40 and according to some sources il was as a result other young people poking matches into the holes in the walls. Material was very hard to get during the war, as was labour, and it took about one year to rebuild.
During the time the new school was being erected, classes were held at Peter Paulson’s house which was vacant at the time.
The new school was built about I I /2 miles NE from the burned down structure. When the 4-room Walter Whyte Collegiate was built in 1960 to house Crate 9 to ll, the scholars received their high schooling there. When this Collegiate was enlarged in 1970, Balsam Bay fed into this school and was discontinued-1 Alex Orvis family lived in the school during the time his own home burned down. The Balsam Bay School was finally turned over to the Ladies Auxiliary of St. Lukes Church where it was used as a Parish and Community
The whole area came under the Lord Selkirk School Division No. 11, by order-in-council 224l67 effective April 1, 1967.
St. Lukes still use the school to this day as a Community Hall, and it serves for many social needs, just as it did in the past, for the area residents.
Here for your information is a list of the teachers who taught at Balsam Bay:
Parrick Bruce 1896-1900
Ada Peebles 1905-1910
Felix Sauer 1912-1915
Felix Sauer 1916-1918
Wm. M. Pecover l9l8
W.H. Jones l918
Minnie Porre l9l8-1919
K.C. Aseltine 1920
Harry Emerson Oakes 1920-1921
Frederick Robinson Blatey 1921-1922
Guslave Pfaff 1922 1923
Jas. E. Plewes 1924 1925
Henry Joseph Walford 1925
John Charles Cosgrove 1926
Thomas W. McBurney 1926- 1928
David Alexander W. Brown 1928-1929
Helen Martha MacTavish 1919-1930
Clarence Osborne Motherall 1930-1932
Thomas Wilmor McBurney 1932-1935
Lorne W. Locke 1935-1936
Thomas MacDonald Wallace 1936 1938
Wilbur David Finlay 1938-1939
Peter Jacob Willms I939-l940
Harold Herbert King 1940 l94l
Harry Herbert Galan I941 1942
Erdman Falk 1942- 1943
Anne Boldr 1943-1944
Lartha Kauss 1944-1945
John Wiebe Kroeker 1945-1946
Mildred BerniceSellgren 1947,1948
Louise Helene Epp 1948-1949
Mrs. Innis Wallace l95l-1952
Mr. A.R. Gislaun 1952
John Les Ryan 1953
Clive Searle Waggoner 1953,1955
Lawrence Giesbriecht 1955 1962
John A. Muller 1962-1963
Mrs. Lorna Fleury 1963-1965
Mrs. Josephine Peebles 1965-1966
Mrs. lna Smith 1966
and then consolidation.