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Residents Invited to Ella E. Flemings School Book Launch

Author Bill Pavao will share history of the little red Tewksbury schoolhouse

The Ella E. Flemings School is an historic schoolhouse located in North Tewksbury. The original one-room school was constructed ca. 1859. Through its long history, the Ella E. Flemings School was moved and twice enlarged to continue meeting the changing needs of a once-rural community. The school was a pioneer in the field of education as it was among the first, if not the first, training school for student teachers in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

After almost 150 years of service to the children of the Town of Tewksbury, the last students left this historic schoolhouse in 2004.

Note that at May Town Meeting, voters allocated $80,000 to assess and remediate hazardous materials, such as flooring and paint, at the historic schoolhouse. Town Manager Richard Montuori said the town has not finalized how the building will be used, but removing hazardous materials will be the first step. The goal is to have a direction decided for the school by May 2024.

On Tuesday, Nov, 28 at 7 p.m., those interested in learning about the history of the schoolhouse can join author William “Bill” Pavao in a discussion about his newly published book, The Ella E. Flemings School: Tewksbury’s Little Red Schoolhouse. The discussion will be hosted by the Tewksbury Public Library and is sponsored by the Tewksbury Historical Society.

Pavao will share the history of this beloved schoolhouse along with stories of some of the people who dedicated their lives to educating the children of Tewksbury for almost a century and a half.

While Pavao never attended the Ella E. Flemings School, he was educated in the Tewksbury Public Schools until he was in the ninth grade. He graduated from Fitchburg State University with a Bachelor of Science in history and a teaching certification and received his Master’s in Middle School Education from Eastern Nazarene College in Quincy, Mass. He has been a public-school teacher of American history and government since 1998.

For many years, Pavao was the curator of the Lizzie Borden Bed & Breakfast/Museum in Fall River, Massachusetts as well as the curator of Lizzie Borden’s Maplecroft. He has been featured on several television programs about the Borden case on The Learning Channel, The History Channel, and the Travel Channel. 

Registration is required for this program.

Interested residents may also pre-order a copy of the 400-page book for $20. Thanks to the author, the Tewksbury Historical Society will receive profits on books that are sold related to this presentation. Pre-order by emailing the Society at

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These posts are from the great organizations around Tewksbury that provide updates to the Carnation.

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