Bend’s first modern school building, Reid School opened September 1914 to 241 pupils. The school’s name honored Ruth Reid, who arrived in Bend in 1904 as a teacher. Miss Reid later served as a principal for the school district and married H.J. Overturf.
The building is constructed of locally quarried pink volcanic “tuff”. Designed by Spokane architects Sweatt, Levesque and Co., the general contractors were Ed and George Brosterhous. The building featured ten classrooms, an auditorium, indoor toilets and a central heating system.
In 1977, the building was decommisioned by the Bend La Pine School District. Through a land exchange with Deschutes County, Reid School became a county property. The Deschutes County Commissioners entered into a lease with the Deschutes County Historical Society for the purpose of establishing a museum.
Reid School is now the home to the Des Chutes Historical Museum, dedicated by Governor Victor Atiyeh on July 4, 1980. The Museum houses exhibits, a resource library, and Society’s collections. Between 2000-2002, a major rennovation campaign for Reid School upgraded the buildings windows, installed an elevator system and modern heating and cooling system. The building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is a cornerstone for the City of Bend’s proposed Heritage Square.
Are you a Reid School alumnus? We’d love to hear from you! Click here to join our Reid School alumnus blog at http://www.deschuteshistory.blogspot.com/.