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Alberni Indian Residential School

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Alberni Indian Residential School

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Dates of existence

1891-1973?

History

The Alberni Indian Residential School was opened as a Day School by the Presbyterian Rev. J.A. MacDonald in 1891. MacDonald's sister was able to interest the Presbyterian Woman's Missionary Society in the need for a larger school, and the new school soon became a boarding school with 50 pupils under the Presbyterian W.M.S., with Miss Elizabeth Lister as its first matron and a Mr. McKee as the teacher. H.B. Currie was Principal when the school burned down in 1917, and continued in that post when the new building, paid for by the government, was opened in 1920. Management of the school was passed to the United Church Woman's Missionary Society with church union in 1925. F.E. Pitts was appointed Principal in 1927, and remained with the school until after R.C. Scott was appointed Principal of the school in late 1939, succeeded by A.F. Caldwell in 1944. Also in 1944, two new classroom blocks and the senior residence, later Peake Hall, were built on the site, and responsibility for hiring teachers was passed to the federal government. Caldwell was succeeded by John Dennys in 1958, and J.A. Andrews in 1962. In 1969, the federal government took over full responsibility for the management of the school.

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