"We encourage you to check this site often. New information will be added monthly"

Current News

Welcome to our website!

news The Friends of the Schoolhouse web site will keep you informed about The Old Britannia Schoolhouse and the activities and events planned by the Friends' organization. We encourage you to check this site often. New information will be added monthly.

Latest Newsletter

Our Summer/Early Fall newsletter has something about the start of the school year in the early days of Britannia and the differences for today's children. Late August is peach season and Ruth has given us another of her recipes, this one for peach pie. There is also worrisome news for the schoolhouse and the program. Click here to find it.

As always it's a pleasure to keep in touch with our members with the newsletter and website even if we can't have on site evens right now. We appreciate your comments and feedback.

September Song

This time of year I have a familiar tune playing in my head. Here are some of the words.

Oh, it's a long, long while from May to December
But the days grow short when you reach September
When the autumn weather turns the leaves to flame
One hasn't got time for the waiting game

Oh, the days dwindle down to a precious few
September, November
And these few precious days I'll spend with you
These precious days I'll spend with you

The song was written for a Broadway musical, Knickerbocker Holiday, in 1938. Kurt Weill composed the music and Max Anderson wrote the lyrics. The play was about the apparently corrupt governor of New Amsterdam (New York), Peter Stuyvesant, in 1647. In reality, it was an allegory designed to oppose Roosevelt's unpopular "New Deal".

The musical has infrequently been revived. A production was staged in 2009 in Toronto at the Jane Mallet Theatre. The song, though, has continued to remain popular through the years.

September seems to be a month of beginnings and endings. The long, lazy days of summer come to an end for children and school begins. Of course, there were some chores like cutting the lawn and, in the days of the Britannia Schoolhouse, helping on the farm. After a long summer of tending the crops, the harvest begins and Fall Fairs are eagerly anticipated. It is the end of some summer sports and the beginning of football season.

For many people since early times, September is the beginning of food storage activities for the winter. Today we don't use a root cellar. Instead we have a freezer to preserve fruit, vegetables and meat for the winter. Canning is another activity that has remained popular as a Fall activity, though it's no longer viewed as the necessary chore it once was. Here is an easy recipe for pickling vegetables. It uses cucumber to make Bread and Butter pickles, but you can use almost any vegetable.

Bread and Butter Pickles

What you Need:

  • A clean jar like a preserving jar or recycled jam or pickle jar.

  • A pot to boil the vinegar and water

  • A large funnel to use when pouring the liquid into the jar (unless you have a steady hand)

  • White vinegar

  • Water

  • Cucumbers

  • Salt

  • Sugar

How to Make the Pickles

  1. Fill the jar two thirds full of white vinegar and one third of water

  2. Pour the vinegar and water into the saucepan and add about a tablespoon of salt and two tablespoons of sugar. The measurements don't need to be exact.

  3. Bring the mixture to a boil. Let cool slightly.

  4. Meanwhile, slice the cucumber into thin slices and pack into the jar. The slices can be as thick or thin as you would like the pickles to be.

  5. Carefully pour the vinegar mixture into the jar. There will be more than you need since the jar is now filled with cucumber slices.

  6. Put the lid on the jar. Let cool. Store in refrigerator. Enjoy.

Coming Events

No events are planned during the COVID 19 pandemic.

Time to Renew Your Membership

Our membership year runs from January to December. Membership forms for renewal or new membership are on this website. Click here to get the form. Please note that because of the COVID19 pandemic, we are suspending the payment of membership fees for 2021. Our newsletters and website will continue to be available to members. Donations to support the schoolhouse and its programs are always welcome and appreciated.

Echoes of the Past

This book, written and published by Friends of the Schoolhouse, documents the history of all of the rural one room schools that existed in Peel County.
Full colour, 208 pages, $30
It is available at all our events or from any member of the Friends of the Schoolhouse Executive.
There is a $10 charge for mailing.

Book Talks

Since the book, Echoes of The Past, was published in May 2016, the writers have been giving illustrated talks to historical societies and other interested groups. We talk about the book and tailor each presentation to suit the audience and the one room schools that were in their local area.
If your group would be interested in having a presentation, please contact Jean (905 826 3475) jkrob@rogers.com for further information.

Come and Join Us

If you have a couple of hours a month or only a few hours once or twice a year you could help us support the schoolhouse and its programs. The executive committee meets on the second Tuesday of the month from September to June to conduct the business of the Friends of the Schoolhouse and to plan programs and events. Our meetings are from 4 to 6 in the afternoon at the schoolhouse. Volunteers help on an occasional basis with our events and in the gardens. Not only do we support a worthwhile cause, we have a lot of fun doing it. Email our Executive Director Shirley Hoad at shoad@bell.net, if you have a few hours to spare and an interest in helping preserve a community treasure for future generations of children.

Mark Your Calendar

To see a list of our year's events go to the Events page.

Researching our Roots

There is still much more to discover about the Old Britannia Schoolhouse and other early one room schools. Read below for a wish list of "Wanted" items that will help us learn more about our historic schoolhouse.


For use in a book on one-room schools in Peel County:
  • Minute Books
  • Cash Books
  • Class Photos
  • Report Cards
  • Prize Ribbons
  • Medals
  • Certificates
  • Shields
  • Contracts
  • Trustee Memorabilia
  • Teacher Memorabilia
  • Newspaper Clippings
  • School Registers

Your contribution will be acknowledged. Materials supplied will either be returned to you or donated to the Peel County Archives on your behalf.


SLATE stands for So Let's All Talk Education (in a one room school), or as one witty person suggested, being truly Canadian, So Let's All Talk Eh! Each year for a day in the spring people involved in working or volunteering in living history one room schoolhouses get together to exchange ideas and learn from each other. We meet at a different schoolhouse location each year which gives everyone the opportunity to experience how living history is presented in a setting different from their own.

If you are a staff member or volunteer in a living history one room schoolhouse and would like more information about SLATE, contact:

Christine Chapel
The Old Britannia Schoolhouse
5576 Hurontario Street
Mississauga, ON
L5R 1B3
905-890-1010 ext 2911