Monday, July 26, 2010

West Elementary School Goes Down

From the Northwood Anchor June 23, 1999


The three-story, brown brick building that served up reading, writing, arithmetic and a host of other subjects to five generations of Northwood and Kensett children came tumbling down last week.

Shortly after 7 a.m. last Wednesday morning, a giant yellow backhoe owned by Metro Wrecking, Inc., of Des Moines tore into the southwest corner of the building which was known in successive eras as Northwood High School, Northwood-Kensett High School, N-K West Middle School and N-K West Elementary School.

By 5 p.m. that afternoon, the giant black claw on the working end of the machine's jointed yellow arm had pulled down all but the northern wall off the 1915 building, leaving four south-facing, second-floor blackboards visible above the jagged line of bricks that topped the west wall's ruins.


  1. The newspaper story says southwest corner - and I can't place this view at all. Makes me wonder if it's the corner building, which served me for grades 1, 2, and 3.

  2. As the man said, "After further review . . ." Now I see the building and we're looking at what is left of the first floor typing room. And I don't remember what was directly upstairs although the biology room was on the east side.

    I recall standing on the steps that disappeared on the date pictured here, on a day when a girlfriend decided she had had enough. Of me. Joe Olson, the janitor, was sitting on the steps with his trusty mop-broom in hand, waiting to get after the classrooms at the end of the day, and he gave me the ultimate wisdom: "There are many more fish in the deep blue sea."

    Don't kid yourself, janitors knows everything.


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