Posted by: Cornwall Community Museum | February 3, 2015

Artifact of the Week. Hand made rolling pin, 1938. St. Andrew’s West, Ont.

scan0004This hand made one piece rolling pin was made as a Christmas present by appreciative parents for rural one room school teacher Rita McDonell in 1938.

Rita graduated from St. Andrew’s West grade school in 1936 at age 16.  She then attended Normal School in Ottawa a year later.  As the law required that you  had to be 18 to teach, she now waited a year and was then hired to teach in a one room rural school in Cornwall Township in 1938.  Here she taught students from grade 1 through  grade 8, and as was often the case, some of the students were older than her.

Many years later Rita gave the pin to a friend Sheila MacDonald who donated it to the Cornwall Community Museum in 2012.

Rita passed away in Windsor on January 1, 2010.


A postcard showing the Convent and school Rita McDonell would have attended.  The Convent served as a boarding and day school and was built between 1905 and 1908.  The building is still standing and houses the the Cornwall Township Historical Society’s historic collection.

Diary of A.J. McGillis, Glen Walter, original spelling and grammar maintained.

January 28th, 1910 – George Deruchie moved to Casgrain’s farm.

March 1st – George Deruchie wife died this evening.

2nd – drawing out manure from east barn.

3rd – A & W & M went to Cornwall bought oil cloth for kitchen stairs paid 30 cents a yard for it snow nearly all gone thawing every day.  Allie Munroe and Clark’s family went out west.

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